I was watching a rerun of the sitcom Reba the other night.
Reba was in the kitchen wearing a denim shirt she used for gardening. Due to her lack of financial resources, she had to patch the shirt over the years instead of tossing it when she'd find a tear.
Her daughter and neighbour commented how hip and cool her shirt was and queried where they too could get one.
Her neighbour encouraged her to start a business together making and selling these denim shirts. They were to turn their adversity into opportunity.
I didn't watch the rest of the show to see if Reba made money or stumbled into a fashion dynasty. However, the lesson is important. During these tough economic times, there is still a demand for unique items, quality and customer service. Individuals still need to purchase products and services no matter how tough times are. The question is, do they absolutely need the product or service that you might offer?
What unique talent do you beholden that could possibly bring in more income for your family and one that you might even have fun doing?
Grab a blank pad of paper and start writing the following.
1. List everything that you "could" do to bring in more cash flow today. Think of everything that you're good at, you enjoy or that you do naturally and never thought to charge for it. Do you drive? Can you write or edit? Are you a whiz with technology? Don't judge any of your ideas. Simply come up with a list of "could do's" even if you're not entirely sure how they might bring in more money.
2. Now, take a good look at your list and come up with the top 3 "would do's". If you've just purchased a new car and the payments and costs are turning out to be a financial burden, that investment could actually turn a profit for you. You might have listed "driving" as a "could do" on your list. You "could" drive a taxi or a bus. But likely, you "wouldn't". However, could you start a seniors driving service where you drop them off to doctors appointments on the weekend, get their prescriptions for them for a price or start a grocery delivery service for your overtaxed friends?
Opportunities abound to create new services or market products to individuals that need what you have to offer independent of any economic environment. Get a few friends together to brainstorm what each of you enjoy and how you might turn that into a lucrative side business or who knows, it might be the next great business in the future.