December 16, 2009

“It is your birthday…”

I was reminded yesterday… that it was my birthday… again… but this time I knew it… :-)

Quite a number of  years ago on a cold December day at the Munich airport the immigration officer congratulated me as he flipped through the pages of my passport. Having not expected such a statement at  that control point, I harshly asked him about the reason of his congratulation. He answered smiling: “ It is your birthday today.” That’s the reason for the above stated ‘again’.

You may not believe it but that was the reality. My overcrowded business program had swallowed whatever came on its way. I had forgotten that it was my birthday. And I was quite young when the incident took place.  (Don’t panic… this won’t be one of the writings discussing the issue of getting old.  :-) )

It is not rare to see that the business involvement occupies a big chunk of the lives of especially the SME owners.  There are thousand-and-one things to do, which in many cases require special experience or sometimes education.  But one has not the means to delegate them like in a larger sized company or sometimes doesn’t even know how to delegate them.  In many cases I come to know the owner has to deal with many managerial tasks, instead of getting involved in the production of products or services they have created a business with. I hear the same sentence over and over again: “ Sorry I am not available because I have so many things to do. I have even postponed our family holiday this year.” When asked about the ‘so many things to do’, they usually cite all the things they don’t like to do.

For some business owners finding a suitable partner, who would take the ‘unwanted’ duties of the business on his shoulders, could be the right solution. Maybe it would also help some of them to remember their birthdays.

PS. A different view on remembering birthdays:

(Taken from the entry of Mr. Michael Rajiv Shah dated 02.10.2008 on Xing)

On 2 October 1947, a news correspondent asked Gandhi if he wanted to make a birthday statement. Gandhi with a questioning look asked him, “Birthday? Whose birthday?”
“Why, uh, yours sir!”
“Who told you it is my birthday?” Gandhi demanded. “Everyday is my birthday. Everyday is your birthday. You see, we begin a new life everyday, so everyday is our birthday!”

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