To the point

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Expert Eye

Lorraine Arnold, owner of Pier Point Bar & Restaurant in Torquay, Devon, doesn’t hold back as she encourages shops to be more positive, to stop procrastinating and to celebrate the little wins

Helen called, out of the blue, and asked if I had a minute. She had a space going in this month’s mag and wondered if I would like to contribute something? So I thought, yes, yes I do!

Lately, all we’ve been hearing is this has gone up, that’s gone up, shortage of this, shortage of that – we’re all doomed! Yes, it’s all challenging, definitely, but we will get through it. Well, those who adapt, operate best practice and think outside the box will.

Look, we got through ‘the Rona’ didn’t we? (If you’re reading this then obviously you did, but my sympathies go out to those whose businesses did not survive) But that isn’t what this is about today. This column, this is about focussing on a positive. Even if it’s just for five minutes!

The awards are back. Yay, very exciting! Well, it is for those who want to participate; for those who don’t, well then don’t. But some of us enjoy the awards, so please stop trying to rain on our parade please. We enjoy the camaraderie surrounding them. We enjoy seeing what we are getting right – or not and looking at ways to improve the business instead of bemoaning the system – it’s a free assessment of how you run your business.  

We enjoy the flutter in our bellies as we wait for that e-mail to see if we’ve been shortlisted! We enjoy getting our glad rags on and clapping each other. We enjoy seeing people who have worked extremely hard get recognition, and, if we don’t get the win this year, there’s always next time! But remember, you have to be in it to win it (apologies for the cliché but it fits).

I challenge all of you to go into your shop and look around you with fresh eyes, right now. Have a look at one thing that can be changed, that you keep putting off – is it that old sauce stand that’s seen better days? Throw it out! Better a clean box than a manky, rusty stand! How about trying a new product like homemade fishcakes? Whatever it is, do it. Today. Don’t say, I’ve been meaning to do that, I’ll do it tomorrow. Just try it! One little win for yourself is a massive boost.

My win this week was finally
getting the fish pie on the menu! I know, right? Couldn’t be simpler and
it is a no-brainer for using up fish scraps. Anyway, it’s on now and doing really well.

Whatever is happening right now, I still believe this is the best industry I have ever been involved with, and I’m prouder than punch to be part of it – and you should be too!

Thanks for listening, I hope I took your mind of things for a minute at least, if I didn’t then, ok, you can’t win ‘em all!

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