We didn't start this business to build an empire. I mean, who really wants millions from a wildly successful company?! ;) We started by asking"How can we be part of our community?" We started brainstorming what kind of business or store or organization was needed, was different, and might be a unique addition to the community. Supporting local people seemed to be the best fit so we went from there.
From a business perspective, how do you make business decisions and have solid business goals when you plan hinges on "connecting" people? It's been a struggle for me to wrap my head around. We need goals, we need to make some money to staff more so I'm not here 6 days a week, we need to run a viable business.
In December, I was listening to Christy Wright's podcast on perseverance. She talked about defining your business purpose and for some reason it clicked this time. Just because we owned a business didn't mean we needed normal business goals. As long as we could pay our expenses, it doesn't matter what our goals were.
After spending some time with that rolling around in my head, I told my husband I was ready to make some goals for the business. We're been doing this for 2 years and now we have some data to look back on. Coming into this year, it feels like we are more stable than ever before and have some idea what's going on. So we're going to have a big board meeting at the dining room table with some horrible mermaid drama in the background that the girls are into. (Oh my goodness! I have no idea what it is but I can't stand it!!!)
Our mission statement, purpose statement, or big huge goal is to Connect the Community. I'm sure this will change and be word crafted later when we are an empire, you can look back at this post and remember when it was "announced" without the impressive mumbo jumbo. You may think, isn't that what you were doing? Yes, yes it was. The purpose of Penn Pantry has always been to connect the community through farmer to consumer, neighbor to neighbor, and business to individual. Always. But now I'm okay saying it.
Business, just like life, is a process. It's a journey. It's a realization that sometimes even though you knew the answer all along, it doesn't click until it's ready.
And so our journey continues.
Our journey to be part of the community.
Our journey to connect.
Our journey to show people that they matter.