In the Know: Doing business in the post-election environment

January 8, 2021 By    

In the Know is a monthly partnership between LP Gas and Propane Resources. This month, supply and risk management specialist Jeff Thompson addresses how propane retailers should focus their efforts now that the presidential election is over. 

Q How would you advise propane retailers to proceed in this post-election environment?

A The elections are over. Guess what? The world didn’t stop spinning, and we are still here. The question is: What do we do now?

I would propose you do nothing differently than you have been doing. Your business model should not change because one party or the other controls the White House, Congress or both. Polices and agendas swing back and forth. That doesn’t mean your underlying business model should too.

Tax treatment on income may change, and positioning to take advantage of those changes is important. But the underlying business of people needing propane is still there, and there happens to be a vast supply of it.

If you have established a strong foundation for your business, it should be able to withstand any governmental storm. The republic will not fall because the other guy did or did not get into office. The republic will fall because we give up.

So the simple answer is: Don’t give up. Wake up, make your bed, go to work and grow your business the way you have always grown it – one customer at a time. Your business will stay strong or fail based on how you act every day. If you sit back and relax, guess what? Someone will catch you and pass you. If you run and keep running, you are still in the race.

Looking back on your business and time in the industry, when did you feel good about what you did? For most of us, it would be when we helped someone, young or old, understand that “propane can do that.”

I’m not trying to cheer you up or give you a pep talk. Hopefully, I am just stating what should be obvious to us. Propane is not a fad industry. Propane is a bedrock industry. Good times and bad, propane is here doing its job day in and day out. We may not be flashy. We may not be glamorous. But, we get the job done.

In the words of a certain football coach whose team is outside Boston: “Do your job!”

Jeff Thompson is a supply and risk management expert at Propane Resources. He can be reached at 888-739-6732.

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