We can struggle to ‘get back to what we were doing,’ whether or not that will be viable – because we cannot reliably guess at long term probability for anything right now.
Or we can try something totally new – invent a new business, new service, new technology …
Many years ago, and I cannot recall the sources, someone said, “Find a niche nobody is filling, and fill it.”
What niches were unfilled before all this started – and can we fill them now?
We could easily say selling PPE, or driving for Skip-the-dishes, but it seems those niches are well filled right now by competition between those who were doing those things, and by those flooding in to find employment and profit.
But what about niches everyone is ignoring? No, there isn’t a book or website to look them up …
But they exist inside you – you know what they are, in our line of work, your business, and your profession you know what the unmet needs are, you know where the niches are. AND YES, it’s not that simple. Viability, profitability, those factors still matter – now more than ever, but they exist.
Every kid who ever offered to shovel a snowy sidewalk or mow an unkempt lawn knows – for those who want to work, there is always opportunity. Add a smile, a fair price, a bit of word-of-mouth among happy customers …
Yes, we have grownup problems. Complex problems. Human problems. Economic problems.
What niche can we fill, what need can we meet? And when we do, is it to pay the bills for a while, or to build relationships and business with a future and growth in mind. Any kid can shovel snow till he has enough pocket money, anybody can mow lawns or paint fences till school resumes in the fall.
Look at any lasting, substantial business venture – it wasn’t started with leisure, a ton of easy to find capital, and a whim; it began with someone filling a niche, working hard, taking care of customers, and building something worthy of pride and loyalty.
That was also true of the best buggy-whip manufacturers just before the car came to prominence and dominance.
What’s your niche?
Merriam-Webster has 5 takes on niche:
~ a recess in a wall, especially for a statue
~ something (such as a sheltered or private place) that resembles a recess in a wall
~ a place, employment, status, or activity for which a person or thing is best fitted
~ a habitat supplying the factors necessary for the existence of an organism or species
~ the ecological role of an organism in a community especially in regard to food consumption
~ a specialized market
It seems to me; that what sets us apart is not recognizing a niche so much as defining one and making it our own. I know I’ve done this before, but I need to do it again, and again, and again. Partly to survive, thrive, compete, and support myself – but also to have a platform from which to work most effectively on those things which matter most to me.
A special shout-out thank you, my readers – those who write or call, and to those who never reply, but I know you are there. Knowing you are there, and that you care, that you are interested in these little missives that call out for curiosity and discussion, I hope your niche is ever-growing more exciting and worthwhile, as is mine.
Most folks have their ‘head in the sand’ about covid19. Some folks think it was a conspiracy hoax. Even if one doesn’t believe the media coverage, which does seem to echo one perspective...just the 200% overall increase in death rate globally compared to other years (regardless of cause) tells the covid19 story. But aside from even that, is the long term health disabilities experienced by those rated, ‘cured’. This disease can, and does, have implications on many body functions, life- long damage is predicted due to it’s permanent influence, also not covered much in the media. Herd immunity? The scientific community is not confirming or denying this possibility; it is simply not known yet...and yet the public has taken up this idea as though it is a fact. Mutation? Occurring rapidly...Even the geographical location of source contamination can be determined by these studies. Some covid19 is more aggressive than other covid19 sources. Hence the belief ‘ah it was nothing’. Well, now I have at least done my part to impart some knowledge from the extensive research I do. Stay healthy...as best you can...within what you consider necessary for your quality of life, SF, Lethbridge, AB