Laxity, Enthusiasm, And Catching Up
When young women start in business their thoughts are all prospective. They look forward to the time when they will attain success. They work hard. They put enthusiasm and long hours into their business. As years pass they attain success and cash in this world’s goods. They buy beautiful homes and surround themselves with luxury. They indulge in high living.
They have country places. They take things easy. They sit back in their chairs and imagine their business will go on forever because they are so well established.
The hard worker is entitled to slacken up a little as success comes to her; but the moment her energies commence to wane, she should see to it that she gets the right sort of young material in the institution to keep up the enthusiasm and hard work which she herself has had.
In the very nature of things it is impossible for a woman to keep up her youthful pace in her mature age, for, as we have frequently observed, you can't go fast far. One of the principal elements in Marshall Field's success was that he got enthusiastic, hard workers around him. The moment he saw signs of laxity in any of these individuals, he let them out and got new material.
Laxity means loss of power, and with loss of power the machine does not do as good work. Laxity in business is a waste.
In these days of keen competition and wonderful activity it is necessary for the business woman to have enthusiasm. If she lacks in this, her business will be at a stand-still, while her enthusiastic competitor goes forward.
Enthusiasm should not be carried to an extreme any more than any other good thing should be carried to an extreme, but at that it is better to be over-enthusiastic than not enthusiastic enough. No one can be truly enthusiastic who does not believe in her business. Enthusiasm is a form of advertising. It shows the people you deal with that there is something going on and that you believe in your own medicine.
Nearly every one in this business world seems to be engaged in the occupation of “catching up”. Nearly everyone is a little behind in the matter of finances.
As soon as one gets across the stream and is on dry land and has her bills all paid, then she takes on new responsibilities and goes deeper in debt.
It is a very hard game, this catching up. The game of existence is very easy to play when you are caught up.
We have tramped through the forests of the great West, and we have invariably found that the pace-makers or leaders are the least tired at night, while the followers or those who are behind trying to catch up, are the ones who are most fatigued.
Some people are habitually behind “with their hauling,” as the Missourians say. No matter how their salaries may increase they are proportionately behind with their hauling all the time.
When an employe gets $50.00 a month she is owing $75.00, she is working hard at the catching-up game all the time. She figures that if she only got $75.00 a month, she could apply the $25 .00 extra and could catch up in three months. The theory is all right but the practice is not, for when this individual gets S75.00 a month, instead of applying that $25.00 extra to catching up, she finds that she wants better cloths, and makes greater expenditures all along the line, so instead of wiping out that $75.00 debt she had when earning $50.00 a month, she finds herself $150.00 in debt on her $75.00 salary.
This catching up has a bad influence. It worries the individual; she does not do her best work.
When you have all your bills paid and a surplus of S500 in the bank, your head is higher, your chest is broader, your backbone stiffer, and you have a confidence that helps you take on greater responsibilities.
To be in debt is to be under obligations to your friends, and it kills off those strong qualities which you naturally possess but which warp when you are catching up. The woman who is catching up cringes instead of standing erect, she is suppliant instead of dominant. She is disturbed by little things, and in the meantime the catching up process is tearing down her nervous system.
Get caught up with your hauling. Whatever your income is, save a percentage of it. Do not mistake us in thinking that we are preaching the old sermon of the savings bank, which is, save your pennies and the dollars will take care of themselves, for our friend Grizzly Pete of Frozen Dog, Idaho, says: "Save your pennies, the dollars will be blown in by your heirs."
Noone gets rich through mere saving, but it is the training the woman gets in saving the pennies that gives her a good idea of values of things and shows her the importance of having a reserve.
If the boss is extravagant in little things, the employs multiplies the extravagance. If you are always catching up while you are an employe you will always be catching up while you are boss. If you are always saving and putting by a reserve while you are an employe, you will be doing the same thing when you are a boss.
The principle is the same. It is merely a question of figures. Do not take on financial responsibilities until you see your way clear to meet the responsibilities, and in addition to meeting them, see to it that you have made an allowance for good measure.
Catching up calls for double effort and double work.
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