Friday, August 17, 2012
Life as a yarn shop owner...
I think the image above says it all. It's always interesting to find out what others think I do all day. The most common misconception is that I sit around all day knitting in pure bliss surrounded by pretty colored yarn. In reality, I might get one or two rows of my "checkout counter socks-on-needles" done while waiting for a customer to choose what to buy. That's probably why I haven't completed a knitting project since I came back from a vacation in May.
Owning your own business is a 24/7 deal. You never step away from the shop even when you're not there in person. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night with a great idea (or what appears to be a great idea at 3am) or the answer to a question I've been pondering. Sometimes I wake up with a whole new set of things to fret about.
I spend a lot of time answering telephone calls. Some people want to sell me things (really, how many people do you think will become customers because I bought advertising in your softball flyer?). Some people want donations (there are the churches, museums, school fund raisers, town events), either money or products. I know one shop that buys blank books by the case and just donates one of those anytime someone asks. Some people "just have a quick question" which can turn into a class that was better done in person.
I find that I have to multitask a lot and I don't do that very well anymore. I also have multiple hats that I wear during the day. I'll have some hand towels that need to be hemmed and packaged, a student coming for a class, keeping up the social aspects of the business (Facebook, Ravelry, the blog, Twitter), customers coming to the store, redoing a webpage, sending out samples to shops around the country, dyeing roving and yarn for the fiber clubs, daily bookkeeping. So I make lists; lots of them. I keep a calendar and try to remember to enter everything so I don't forget something or someone. I do, and I'm sorry. I apologize ahead of time.
So that's what I really do as a yarn shop owner. Would I trade it in for anything else. Not on your life. I love most aspects of it and try not to get overwhelmed. Sometimes just writing about it helps....