Ask Amy: Little company owner is overwhelmed by donation requests

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Dear Amy: I’m a company owner with a compact retail shop positioned in an affluent neighborhood. We rent our space, and our employees involves loved ones members who perform for absolutely free so that we can hold the doors open. The shop is a labor of really like, and it is a gathering spot for neighborhood members. That mentioned, company is incredibly slow, and we are struggling.

The covid years saw our total shutdown (according to state mandates) and company at a total standstill. The vacationers who utilised to be our primary guests/purchasers have not returned considering that covid.

We are continuously becoming approached by regional companies and nonprofits hunting for donations and sponsorships. These consist of schools asking for donations to raffles, museums asking for 3-figure donations to their fundraisers, nonprofits raising funds for excellent causes, regional theaters and newspapers asking us to obtain advertisements (“for only $275 a week”), and much more.

We have constantly supported them when we could, which includes providing present certificates to our shop, but I’m overwhelmed now. Some days I’m picking out in between getting meals or gas for my auto so I can drive to my other job.

Our company account is empty, and it is all I can do not to cry when asked for donations. They ask in telephone calls and then stick to up in particular person and by means of emails, copying other folks on these emails, which tends to make it appear like we’re an uncharitable company.

Some of the askers even make a comment that we’re in “this town” so as a result ought to have the funds and suggests to donate. How do I respond to these people today? I was constantly taught to “never complain, never ever clarify,” and I do not know how to inform them that I’d really like to donate but we just can’t.

Our hope is to hold our shop going for a handful of much more years as our company recovers from the pandemic, but I’m also afraid we’re going to shed respect from neighborhood members who feel we are closefisted and uncharitable. Your suggestions?

Worried: My suggestions is to craft a uncomplicated, truthful and polite written response: “As our company continues to recover right after our lengthy closure in the course of the pandemic, we uncover ourselves unable to donate to your incredibly worthy bring about. We hope to see you in the shop incredibly quickly.”

I hope that your fears regarding your reputation are an exaggerated response to your affluent surroundings. You really should assume that other regional loved ones-run companies are stretched, as well. (Connecting with other folks in a regional compact-company networking association may well assist you to see that you are not alone.)

Keep in mind that the people today generating these requests likely do not comprehend that theirs is the fifth “ask” you have received this week. A rapid, respectful and definitive “Sorry — we’re stretched tight, so not this year” really should send them on their way.

Hang in there. You are not alone.

Dear Amy: I reside with my daughter and son-in-law in my personal private quarters, which I paid for them to create. My location covers roughly 1-third of the property.

I attempt to give them their space and reside independently in my unit, which is attached by a hallway to their two-story property. We are a loving loved ones, and I have a great son-in-law.

I stated that I’d spend 1-third of the utilities, which involves heat, air conditioning and garbage pickup. I’m retired and living on Social Safety. They are complete-time, thriving company people today.

My daughter thinks I really should spend for half the utilities. Granted, I do not endure, and use the heat and air for my comfort. Old people today do not like to shiver all winter or sweat all summer season. Is it equitable to split the fees 50/50, or really should we spend according to our earning energy?

Cool Consumer: No, it does not appear equitable to split the fees of these utilities 50/50. Nor does it appear equitable to spend for utilities primarily based on your earnings.

The apparent answer (to me) is for you to spend 1-third of the utilities, considering that you occupy 1-third of the space and are 1-third of the occupants. You may well appear into installing a door in between your unit and their property (for power-conservation purposes), and maybe installing a separate meter for your unit.

Dear Amy:Organizer with a Challenge” relayed intense aggravation more than how their “politically primarily based affinity group” had devolved into dysfunction. They will need to use Robert’s Guidelines of Order: Make a motion, talk about, then vote. That’ll cease the minority from ruling the group.

Been There: I vote “aye!”

© 2023 by Amy Dickinson. Distributed by Tribune Content material Agency.

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