The tragic story no one wants to hear – your favorite, popular, neighborhood institution, the one that has the only ‘insert-unique-product/service-here’ in town and anchors the area’s history – is going out of business because the owner’s next of kin don’t want to carry it on and they can’t find anyone else.
What to do? What to do?!
There are some city/neighborhood efforts to identify young entrepreneurs who want to continue the business, but that may not be the easiest route, as they’re often more interested in fulfilling their own vision, which helps explain why the owners’ kids are looking elsewhere. What may be a more viable approach is to assist the existing staff in continuing the business, or a former resident ‘retiring’ back to their home town, says Al Jones, Regional Development Officer for South Central Montana, and one very savvy economic development expert.
Al’s detailed synopsis follows: