I don’t think I understood the meaning of the old saying “When God/Life hands you lemons, make lemonade” until this week. Lemons are the acidic (not so great situation) and the lemonade is the sweetened form of the fruit. It’s a saying that encourages a person who is facing adversity to find the good in a situation.
This weekend we had something handed to us…a busted exhaust fan and motor on our paint booth. The next thing that hit us hard was an influx of boats to be repaired. Then you add limited amount of Papa Del availability, a crying baby at the DelSordo home front and a group of rowers that really want their boat back. So…what do we do? How do we make lemonade? What does that even mean? I suppose it means that you are suppose to make the best of a situation and when someone gives you lemons, the absolute best result is lemonade. Maybe it should be “When God hands you a problem – find a solution.” That to me makes the most sense. There is more than one way to skin a cat – according to Parks N Rec there are actually 4 ways to skin a cat http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUcjn1CuRZI
We got together and were able to think outside the box. The broken exhaust fan allowed us to find a leak in the air hose and filter system (also gave us time to find the dirty filter in the compressor). It allowed us time to look at different ways to repair a boat. It gave us time to take a deep breath and look at our surroundings. We were honest with our customers and told them the truth – we couldn’t deliver their boat because of a problem that was out of our hands. They seem OK.
The more I think about it…maybe its God’s/Life’s way of saying “SLOW DOWN. LOOK. STOP. FIND THE SOLUTION. IT AINT ALL THAT BAD.” I think it is also saying that when you get put in a bad situation, spend less time dwelling on the bad and more time on the good. Instead of crying and worrying about the busted fan motor or the fact that Papa Del was too busy to help, we looked beyond the problem and found a solution. It also gave us time to find ways to improve the process and the shop.
An Entrepreneur will constantly run into a situation like I mentioned above. The successful ones stop and find the solution. I don’t think you will always make lemonade out of lemons…maybe you will just have to make an Arnold Palmer.