As we look back at 2020, it is easy to see scarcity as a defining feature of personal and business transformations. Lockdowns and re-lockdowns have led to business slowdowns and employee layoffs. Sales are down and unemployment is up. Surviving restaurants are competing for fewer customer visits and leveraging digital platforms once considered more foe than friend. The workers who have been the heart of house are now leaving restaurants for jobs with grocers, delivering for an online platform, or leaving the industry all together. Life is being lived in the margins of “Reopening Phases” dictated more by party, than science. It’s hard, if not dangerous, to see the glass anything other than half-full.
Scarcity is a Perspective
Yet, if we take another look, you can see scarcity as a fear-born perspective rather than a reality. Notwithstanding the setbacks of 2020, many quick service, limited service and even some full service restaurants are thriving. Restaurants across the spectrum have embraced the power & potential of third-party delivery and other new technologies. Competitors have become friends and collaborators. Customers have supported their favorite local restaurants in the face of dine-in restrictions. Businesses on the verge of closing pre-COVID have exited the industry leaving green space for future innovators. And, as much as we miss some employees transitioning to other employers, business owners have never had better clarity on who belongs on their A-Team moving forward.
Grow through Abundance
Think back to the last pumpkin or gourd you carved or cooked in the past few months. How many seeds are in a pumpkin? Big or small, pumpkins have hundreds of seeds. Think of how small but mighty seeds are in nature. Within months a single seed can grow into a large fruit with the potential for hundreds of new seedlings. If you look around, you’ll see so many examples of abundance in nature.
As you think about the abundance of nature, remember the wisdom of Cynthia Ocelli: “For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.”
“For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.”Cynthia Ocelli
Abundance in Life
In spite of the year we’ve had, Americans still live in a world of abundance. The USDA estimates that 30-40 percent of the food supply is wasted. A study in the Journal of Environmental Management found that America’s largest irrigated crop is our lawns and golf courses. Restaurant industry sales will still be in the hundreds of billions of dollars and the US workforce will still employ nearly 150 million Americans.
Highlighting abundance isn’t intended to callously disregard the hundreds of thousands of lives lost, millions of unemployed and thousands of business closed in 2020. Our heart goes out to every single person negatively impacted by COVID-19. Rather, it is important to acknowledge abundance exists… yet fear leads to a greater sense of scarcity leaching into society, businesses and our way of life.
The Consequences of Scarcity
A scarcity mindset can lead to envy about what people have, guilt about what others have and anger about what other people are doing in the world. An abundance mindset can lead to more creativity, more joy, increased happiness, and a focus on gratitude and appreciation.
Martin Luther King famously said “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.” Fear is never going to replace love. Scarcity is never going to create abundance. The biggest consequence of a constant scarcity mindset is creating habits of scarcity that permeate your mind, life and business.
Taking Advantage of Growing through Abundance
Rather than focus on a perspective of scarcity, you can shift your mindset to grow through abundance in life and in business:
- Focusing on what you’re grateful for in 2020.
- Fully leveraging your and your business’ unique strengths.
- Expanding your strengths and offsetting your weaknesses.
- Planting one or two “game changing” seeds for 2021, having a clear vision of the world when those seeds bear fruit, and nurturing them into the new year through actions & mindset.
Don’t live in scarcity waiting for things to happen. Recognize the abundance we live within. Be crystal clear on your vision and the goals (seeds) to know exactly the path you will follow and steps you will take. Always be winning or learning, never losing. Focus on expanding your strengths, not trying to improve your weaknesses. Turn on the light to get rid of the darkness. Be for something rather than against something. Be excited about the endless opportunities to grow through abundance in your future.
About Consult to Grow
Consult to Grow® provides a variety of services to help you grow your restaurant business including grow & scale assessments, quick build 12-month traction plans, and more. You can read through our core service by clicking here. If we can help you grow through abundance in any way, please don’t hesitate to contact us.