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All Riches Have Limits; Be Frugal

“There is no dignity quite so impressive, and no independence quite so important, as living within your means.” ― Calvin Coolidge

This habit is an easy one for you, the small business owner, to adopt as soon as you realize that everything related to the business and its expenses is done with your money. And, you must instill this message into the thinking of all employees because there is no question that it is much easier to spend someone else’s money. Frugality needs to be part of your company’s culture, no matter how much money you are making. In small business, you can never anticipate all future economic bumps in the road. You can react much easier to those bumps when you are running as lean as possible.

In the late nineties, my husband was employed at a start-up company that got off to a great start. The owners were able to secure a good source of financing which gave them a great cushion in the event of a “rainy day.” However, those were the days of excess. When a company was doing well, they needed to “flaunt it.” For us, it was nice being part of the ride. The Christmas parties were spectacular! The little German sports car the company gave my husband to drive was also nice. They burned through money all the way to the Initial Public Offering (IPO), which corresponded to the big tech stock crash in 2001. Within six months they went from fully funded to bankrupt. Eventually, a competitor bought the assets for pennies on the dollar.

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