This post is coming to light because a vendor, and former employee, told me that I should share this in a blog. Well, I’m no blogger but maybe this will help someone in our business. Maybe it will even help someone in another field.
“Where did you start?
Are you still growing?
Is it to your full potential?
START... When I was a vendor, I had NO IDEA what I was doing. Sometimes I still feel that way, but I’m determined to make it work. Often times, in business and in life, we forget where we have come from. This was it for me... some windows that I got from an old coworker and 19 other items... this was my “space” at The Faded Farmhouse. I didn’t have much, and was extremely broke, but I was in survival mode. As furniture pieces from vendors sold, I would excitedly text them to tell them that their furniture had sold. Often times we would get a response of “That’s awesome, I’m working on another piece now!” Sometimes now would turn into a week or more cause life happens. Rain was also something that hindered drop offs back then too.
With each sale, I used that opportunity to fill empty spaces with my overflow that I had stored in the garage at the Arrington store. Of course, back then I was new and stepped on toes. I was a couple of weeks into this industry and didn’t realize how much that was frowned upon. Putting items in someone else’s “booth” or “space” was a NO NO. Coming from corporate retail, this was silly to me. Every space in a store is like real estate. If it’s not being utilized, how is that beneficial for business? Slowly but surely some vendors left because of my actions and I was totally oblivious to the reasoning. Looking back now I understand fully but I was only trying to make EVERYONE successful. To this day, I still have this mindset. I want everyone under our roofs to be successful. Fast forward to me buying the Arrington store and I got my idea to get rid of booths entirely. (That was pretty easy since we only had a couple of furniture dealers left.. Thanks for sticking around Mona)
I love what each of you do, and that is the reason that you are a vendor with us. We often offer my opinions because we hear what people are looking for. I’ve been there, I know that sometimes it stings because we put our all into what we do. Please remember that we offer these suggestions with hope that it will give your businesses a boost!
GROWTH... Every business grows from within. Often times they grow quicker than we expect. Take mine for example. Arrington was BOOMING, a space opened, so I jumped on it and opened a new concept. It was good for a little bit but it began to suck life out of my best seller...
If your best sellers aren’t stocked PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE don’t move on to another idea. We all get bored or stagnant from time to time. Boredom happens, but do yourself a favor and scroll back in your feed (or your sales reports) and see the success that you had. Focus on the it factors, gather yourself, and get back to it. If money doesn’t motivate you, revisiting the success will likely generate your drive again. We cannot grow if you aren’t! Make sure that your craft is perfected.
FULL POTENTIAL... This story has me wanting to dig deeper. I want to talk about spreading yourself too thin. Many of you started with us when your businesses were much smaller than they are today. With more exposure comes more growth. Make sure that you’re continuously feeding that growth... the roots of the plant offer more than the leaves. If the wind blows will your business be rooted? Are your wholesale accounts cutting checks monthly? If a shop is your roots, make sure the wind doesn’t knock you down. Grow when the roots are thicker.
This could be a lesson or it could be a rant. It’s all in the eyes of the beholder. You can lead a horse to the water, but you cannot force them to drink.”