Mamas Don’t Let your Babies Grow up to be Grocers….

Most people who haven’t run businesses don’t realize how small profit margins are in most businesses.

Many years ago for just under a year I worked in a convenience store…. in Florida. Oddly, although I worked the night shift for most of that time (11:00 pm to 7:00 am) I was never robbed (you have to know Florida to realize how amazing that is). But that’s not what I want to write about.

One day as I was finishing up my shift I had to handle the morning rush (construction workers buying inedible and sickening combinations of fast food for their lunch breaks) by myself because the manager was doing the books for the month before. Just before I left he showed me the result. The profit for the store, that is after all the salaries and taxes and maintenance and other bills were paid, the grand profit was about …… $ 50 (I forget exactly how much about $ 55).

And this was not a struggling store, there were four stores in the chain (which no longer exists) in town and we were kind of a flagship (the only one open 24 hours).

Being open all night probably hurt our profit margin a little, most nights were fairly slow even though we were on a main highway (we often sold more gas than anything else). But still, the clear profit in a pretty average month was less than I made in a single shift.

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