Jack London wrote an enthralling story about a young man stuck in a winter storm in the Klondike who while surrounded by hungry wolves, attempted to build a fire. You will have to get a copy of his book to find out how it all turned out but I want to make a comparison to the character in “To Build A Fire” and a typical business owner.
Prior to becoming established, a typical small business owner toils to make fire from wet wood, in the wind and cold without ample supplies of kindling. At least that was my observation last night as I attempted to build a small fire in my hearth. My fire was like my business. The kindling as working capital, the newspaper as marketing, the wood as customers and the hearth as my business.
As in business, there are many times when I build fires in my hearth when I am required to tend to them, nurse the small flames along until it reaches a point where the flames are committed to the wood and everything begins to work. Sometimes when the wood is very dry, the paper is aerated and the hearth is still, a fire comes easy. In business this would be called a quick success.
As I sat their staring into the hearth I realized that successful businesses are like well burning fireplaces, their wood is dry, the flames make popping sounds and the hearth glows with warmth.
Excuse me now as I need to build a fire, it is snowing, my firewood is wet and I hear the howls of wolves beyond the trees. I have a few matches left…