According to Eric Schmit, Google’s Executive Chairman, “Revenue solves all problems.” Is that really so?
The truth is it doesn’t. Revenue can solve some problems, while creating others and having plenty of cash coming in may even cover over existing issues that can be ignored while times are good.
Plenty of governments have found themselves unsuck after rich revenues allowed them to ignore problems in their own society, the Dutch Disease – where a country’s income rises rapidly because one industry booms and crowds the others out – is one example of revenue causing problems. Local Chinese governments are currently dealing with problems bought around by their massive income from selling land.
In business, owners and managers sometimes find themselves in trouble because they can’t manage the demand that comes with the revenue a growing enterprise attracts.
Sometimes, the revenue’s fine but there’s no profit. I can earn a lot of money selling bottles of beer for ten cents when everyone else is charging two dollars, but the fact the wholesale price is one dollar means I’m going to grow broke quickly unless I can impress a dumb corporation with my massive customer growth and get them to buy me out.
The group buying model tends to combine two of the above problems – participating businesses struggle with the demand they generate while the discounts they are giving almost certainly guarantees they are not making a profit on the deal.
So revenue doesn’t solve all problems, even the most profitable business – legal or not – has its own unique set of problems.
Life’s easier when your business is profitable, but problems will never go away. Even the good life has problems; deal with it.