No more business as usual
April 1, 2013
Could it be that we in this small Island, that enjoyed unparalleled prosperity for many decades, have to accept the reality that we are now too expensive in just about everything? With all the constant political bickering over many years it is time for some real soul searching. We have previously had full and over employment and a standard of living second to none in the world. We took it for granted and complained about everything. We found race issues under every rock while cruising the world and driving our pimped out rides with 20in rims and 2,000 watt thunder bass car stereo status symbols. This is not to be judgmental but just taking a look at what was taken for granted by a spoiled people in many ways. None of us escaped the lure of more. No finger pointing, as we all succumbed to the proverbial good life and the intoxication of thinking we had a right to it.
Well here we are overpriced and not competitive in the tourism market notwithstanding we still offer an outstanding product. Talk to our visitors and you will hear what they enjoy and not what we don’t offer. What is needed, I believe is, where possible, to lower the cost substantially in the room rate in our hotels which quite simply is killing us. Labour costs need to be contained and lowered along with considerations in electricity and in any and every area where hospitality is concerned. If we can achieve this we could be more attractive to potential visitors. We cannot control air fares but if we are prepared to accept less at the front end, the hope is for a bonanza at the back end. Result, more for all.
The need for real appreciation for our dilemma is vital in a world that does not owe us a living. Everyone of us has a part to play including the banks, landlords and food importers. We must eat less and become frugal with our food dollar. Do more with less is no longer political but our new reality with the national debt approaching life support. The diagnosis is deeply concerning but the prognosis is hopeful if we change our thinking to suit Bermuda’s present reality. It is not business as usual and profits need to be reasonable when considering what is needed is volume and that can only be achieved by what the market is prepared to pay. The reality is that the market does not care about your hardships, all that matters is the best bang for the buck. Get it right and in the end we all survive. Accepting less with all its painful implications may be idealistic one may say. Have a better way forward? Let’s hear it.
WAYNE B SCOTT
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