Six days in Melbourne. They can keep their traffic jams. They can keep their damp, too-close-together houses with no views and no light. They can keep their parking signs which you need a PhD to decipher. We don’t need any of those things in small town New Zealand.
But…..there was one thing that I LOVED that I think we all need to learn from:
Everything is MOBILE MAD! Every cafe had people working on laptops somewhere. Every shop I went into had a website that I could also buy from (so that I could do more shopping once I got home!). Booking a taxi from an app gave the driver the exact pin-pointed location on a map – so no more spelling out loud, giving directions or waiting half an hour while the driver gets lost! Free Wi-fi all over the place! Google places will suggest good restaurants nearby to eat at. My new laptop even compiled my photos into an album for me from the week!
And, I could still be in touch with my own business, if or when I wanted to!
You might think that this has got NOTHING to do with living in our small towns – we live a slow pace, easy lifestyle where it’s “not what you know but who you know” that keeps our businesses ticking over. All good right?
We don’t need to keep up with this mobile stuff! But hang on, why are we then buying kids school shoes online, using VistaPrint to order business cards online, booking flights online, and keeping up with our Facebook feeds on our cell phones?
Obviously in a big city (like Melbourne) mobile is pivotal to living and working a fast-paced life-style. But less obviously, in a small town I think we need it even more – because we need to make distance irrelevant. We need to be able to sell our goods and services all around NZ and the world. We need to be able to hire specialist staff from all around NZ and the world. We need to attract new people and businesses to our small towns that are also selling and hiring all around NZ and the world. We need to be able to deliver the fast, easy service that mobile connected-ness brings – otherwise all of our businesses will become irrelevant.
How mobile is your business?