Do your own thinking independently. Be the chess player, not the chess piece. – Ralph Charell

Your second step in Outthinking the Outdoors™ is important to creating a successful, energetic 4-season life for your patio and your restaurant.

Step 2: Adjust your Sails

Do you still operate your business the same exact way today as 5 years ago? 10 years ago? 30 years ago?

Of course not! And, if you do, this is an extremely important step for you.

There will always be outside factors that affect your business. These factors are uncontrollable variables.

The oil spill in October of 2012 during Hurricane Sandy caused a shift or change for seafood restaurants. The 2012-13 NHL lockout affected many businesses located near arenas. A nearby business opening or closing or renovating will have an affect on your business. To stay at the top of your market there will be small daily adjustments.

These are risks we all accept, simply by continuing to breathe.

The independent variable is the important part of the equation: the ability to adjust and make changes. These adjustments, manipulatinos, changes determine whether your business grows or fails, wins or loses. You and your choices are the independent variable.

Simply being open to change takes courage, but it is critical. The first step is being open to change – saying YES! – and working from the knowledge that numerous answers and possibilities exist!

It is difficult to work with someone who is “stuck,” unwilling to change plans or strategies to better meet goals and objectives. Some people get fixed on certain ways of doing things and have difficulty being open-minded. Perhaps we’ve found ourselves doing this, at times. The more we are open to suggestions during the “storm” the more likely we will survive it.


Instead of automatically saying “no” today, consider the word “yes” before answering. Are you automatically saying no because of fear of the unknown or the unforeseen? Once you’ve considered your options, then, if it makes sense to deny a request, do so. But do so knowing you aren’t running on autopilot.