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A LinkedIn Marriage: Being creative and enterprise-driven

Don’t you just hate it when you’re told that creative persons have no business (pardon the pun) being entrepreneurs? Sadly, the lingering status quo seems to be that someone who is geared toward managing an enterprise, whether solely or with the assistance of technical expertise, has no inkling of what is required to successfully operate a business entity. Yet, life in 2021, or at least, life for the past 15+ months of the COVID-19 pandemic has seemed to remind us that it is precisely the people who have that visionary edge in development that will come out of this pandemic better than before.

Creative people will always prevail in a post-pandemic world because they are skilled at adapting, more so they adapt quickly. Take for example those businesses that were once brick and mortar locations. In the wake of the rapid spread of the COVID-19 virus, they had to be shuttered. Yet, where the stagnant mind could only foresee doom and despair, the creative mind soon realized that there was an opportunity to come out of this lingering threat. Some of them made a partial, interim transition to online availability, while others have completely transformed their operations to become virtual- and they continue to flourish.

Yet still, there were the very innovative minds that utilized ‘pandemic time’ to design and improvise. Arguably, while a general goods store becoming a pharmacy overnight, or a hardware becoming a bakery are highly-inflated references of innovation at play, there are still in fact several tangible examples that reflect the creative mind.

In Trinidad and Tobago for example, there was the ingenious entrepreneur that I would like to dub the ‘Doubles Designer’. For those persons not familiar with doubles, it is one of the most popular street foods in the country, consisting of two separate pieces of deep-fried float known as bara (pronounced as ‘Baa-raah’) that are filled with boiled channa (chick peas), then drizzled with optional sauces ranging from tamarind or mango sauce (sweet sauce) and chadon beni (culantro) to pepper sauce. Traditionally, they are sold by doubles vendors at any time of day, and at almost every major street corner.

Since the present COVID-19 public health regulations however, that activity has had to come to an abrupt stop. Nevertheless, that did not stop one enterprising mind from re-creating the doubles in such a way that it could be marketed as pre-packaged food to be sold at places where essential business would be conducted, such as a gas station.

The doubles came in an attractive serving container, with the four bara (I believe) neatly stacked one on top the other, with the channa and the respective sauces in separate containers. Suffice to say, it was a hit! The doubles vendor continued to enjoy sales, doubles-craving customers were happy, and even that particular gas station generated further business…as well as free public exposure when a local news crew highlighted the upgraded product.

Lesson to be learned? Being creative + being enterprise-driven = success.

Key words: LinkedIn Caribbean, creative, enterprise-driven, success, talented

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