By Dylan J. Stone
In August 2019, Lisa Clarke and her husband Ron, created and launched a new local small business, Effervesanz, in Oxide Street.
Effervesanz is a new age store which specialises in selling crystals and incense, oracle cards, and alternative books.
Despite the challenges of the COVID pandemic, Lisa and Ron will celebrate Effervesanz’s second birthday next month.
Lisa’s customer service skills certainly puts this little business on the map.
Lisa comments that her ‘love (of) dealing with customers’ has enabled her to withstand the external challenges her new business has dealt with in the last eighteen months.
Lisa’s experience in previous customer service roles and her previous work in office and retail positions, has ensured her customer service skills are up to scratch, and she credits this previous experience with ensuring her transition into small business ownership was as smooth as possible.
Her passion for alternative gifts and products has also certainly helped Effervesanz to grow under very difficult circumstances.
I asked Lisa about some of the greatest benefits of small business ownership, and the opportunity to help people and fulfil personal needs immediately sprang to her mind. In Lisa’s view, her goal of securing employment for herself and Ron in her business enables her business to ultimately give back to the community.
It’s this community spirit which strengthens Effervesanz, much like it’s this community spirit that strengthens other small businesses throughout Broken Hill.
Importantly, the ability of Lisa’s business to sustain employment for herself and Ron has also provided a financial and social benefit to them, as they can now set their own hours and work schedule, and can actually realise the independence that anyone pursuing small business ownership desires.
If Lisa could provide a new small business owner any advice, it would be to ‘be different, (and) be willing to change.’ In Lisa’s view, it’s important to be different as you need to set your business apart to attract your customers, and to find your market.
However, it’s Lisa’s comment that business owners must be ‘willing to change’ which will strike a chord with so many aspiring business owners.
Flexibility and agility are essential skills for business owners, particularly in these uncertain times. Lisa’s flexibility and agility ensured Effervesanz could survive the worst of the COVID pandemic, despite the fact the business was still in its infancy.
Lisa has consequently become a strong role model for aspiring business owners due to her positive, yet realistic outlook on small business ownership.
Fittingly, when I asked Lisa what her business goals are, she commented that she ‘hope(s) to make it to 10 years (in business).’ With Lisa’s second anniversary next month, 10 years might seem like a lifetime away.
However, Lisa’s positive, yet realistic attitude will certainly help her administer her business well into the future, as will her agility and flexibility.