Guest Column | January 30, 2020

Are We There Yet?

By Mark Matthews, ATG-IT


Remember when you were a kid and your parents were taking you away to the seaside for a holiday in the family car? After about 30 minutes into the journey, what did you say?

“Are we there yet?”

Why didn't millions of other children and I see the start of the journey as part of the holiday? Living in the middle of the U.K. meant we were always hours away from the seaside. My parents always suggested we play “I-spy with my little eye”, but anything to do with the game will have been forgotten as soon as we could see the sea. The holiday began not when we left our house, but when we had arrived at our destination.

Running a business can be just like this. You can't get from where you are today to where you want to be in the future without having to deal with all the crap that gets slung at you along the way. After 31 years of running a small business I know you can't get from A to B without having ups, and a lot of downs; you have to embrace and experience the whole journey, there are no short cuts.

The good and bad lessons you will learn on your way will help mould you into the person you want to be. There might be some quick wins, but there are no short cuts to having the experience and, to be honest, you shouldn't want them.

At times you might feel like the planets are all aligned and on your side — brilliant you've nailed it! Unfortunately, that feeling doesn't last long as it can soon change to feel more like "why me", along with a hundred other "why's".

You will probably feel like you have had enough, you can't keep doing this. You will (or may) want to give up but stay strong and true to yourself. Ups and downs are all part of your journey, your legacy, your learning, your struggle.

You have to overcome this stage as this is part of where your future greatness comes from. You have to overcome this journey to get back home, just in time for another adventure to begin. It's OK, this time you have more experience that will make this next journey easier.

About The Author

Mark Matthews is a family man, business leader, and visionary (Dad taxi). He has been running a multi-award-winning IT MSP, based in Bromsgrove, England, since 1989. For the last five years he has been a changed man as his philosophy is now “It’s my fault, so I’ll get out of the way and let my team do its job,” which is serving him well after the last 30 years, now enabling him to empower his people to be the best that they can be.