‘There but for the grace’… reflections by a Melbourne printer on losing of his business.
The collapse of your company, something that you have put your heart and soul into, as well as 60 to 70 hours a week for over 20 years, unleashes a myriad of feelings and emotions.
First there is the depression of losing what has been your ‘baby.’ Something that you were so proud of, something that you nurtured from its infancy, something that you watched with pride as it grew employing many new staff,
Then it is gone!
The administrator says thanks but we don’t need anything more from you. You go home and then what? You feel you have let down your staff, some of whom have worked with you for over 20 years; your suppliers, many of whom have become ‘friends’; as well as your family and lastly yourself.
Your dreams are gone!
Once you have got over the initial shock and managed to partially drag yourself out of the very dark place you found yourself in, you start to think ‘what am I going to do now? The only thing I know is the printing industry.’
You are over 60 and it’s too late to start again, and with all the vitriol that has been going around about your failure, nobody in the industry wants to know you. Your ‘friends’ have disappeared completely. Whether they were staff, suppliers, accountants or just acquaintances, the phone is dead. There is nobody who wants to give you a pat on the back and say everything will be OK, no calls to say how about doing some work with us? Not even a quick call to see how you are going.
You sit back worrying where you are going to get money to put food on the table at the same time as the bills and demands pile up. It can take years for the fallout to be finished. Gradually you can see a path ahead, but that path doesn’t include any of your old friends.
So before you all jump into the feeding frenzy of picking over the corpse of one who stood among you for many years, think … ‘There but for the grace of God go I.’