NPR did a story about a week ago on a new ice cream shop in L.A. that uses liquid nitrogen to make ice cream instantly, right in front of your eyes.
Oh, the technology. And that’s only the beginning.
“Most of the tools that they use to run their businesses are on their phones, even the security cam,” says interviewer Sonari Glinton.
They use online payroll, accounting, HR, marketing, and advertising services as well as web-cams to run and monitor their business. They found their legal counsel online too. When it comes to managing their business, they almost never put pen to paper.
“And all these technologies are available to the average kid who wants to start an ice cream stand,” says Glinton. “And it helps to clear up the red tape. Waverly Deutsch teaches entrepreneurship at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business. She says hours, days, even months have been shaved off of getting a small business started.”
But doing business online isn’t all rainbows and candy either.
There is an essential human component to running a successful small business. There’s something really valuable about meeting your service provider and experiencing the kind of interpersonal customer interaction that makes your business memorable. Honestly, I can’t remember the name of the person who designed my wedding invitations online, but I’ll never forget the photographer.
Let’s face it, emoticons are no substitute for handshakes.
Service providers are essential members of their communities. They have names and faces you can trust to help you out when you need it and everything they do makes something a little better, whether it’s fixing plumbing problems or making a sweet Halloween costume.
That’s why Earnest helps providers find and reach out to new clients in their communities, so they can go out and make more human connections with people who need them.
Earnest tries to bring its clients all the benefits of technology without compromising those important things that humanize us and make life good.
We’ll introduce you to your neighbors, you go out and help them out with whatever they need. Handshakes encouraged.