Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Business Tips - Introduction

I've had an idea swimming in my head for a few weeks that I'm thinking about turning into blog posts. I initially was going to post an "What I learned in my First Year on Etsy" type post. I'd planned on doing this back in May to celebrate my 1 year anniversary of my Etsy Shop. But once I finished my rough draft, I realized it would be much more helpful to expound on the topics individually. And doing so may actually help someone else. At the very least, it will release the thoughts that are trapped in my brain and give my readers something else to read aside from Aiden stories (which are still my favorite).

So, what qualifies me for said tips? Well, I have a B.A. in English and a minor in Interdisciplinary Studies. My major means I wanted to be a famous novelist with million dollar book deals or fall back onto being an editor if the 'novelist' thing didn't work out. This may help explain why my blog posts are so long (and yes, I know they're long). My minor means I went to one private college and 4 community colleges before finally finishing up at TX A&M-Commerce and I had a lot of useless elective classes that TX A&M thankfully allows you to lump together into a minor. I think it's supposed to mean I'm well rounded. Which I am, my pants size says so.

I landed my first 'real' job in Jan of 2000 at AFC/Unifab Division. They have since consolidated to ACS/Unifab in MA. That was during the 2004 election (Bush/Kerry) and a strict conservative has no business moving into liberal territory any time of the year, much less election time. So I chose to be temporarily jobless. (And for my many liberal friends out there, don't freak out because I'm conservative-like it's a dirty word. No one would defend your right to be all-out-liberal like I would. So calm down.)

I started out as a Receptionist and ended up as the Production Scheduler. It was a small business, so your title didn't necessarily reflect all your job duties. Yes, I scheduled production, but I also had to keep track of time studies, know how every product was engineered & built, it's cost to make-both material and labor, margins, purchasing of materials, marketing, etc.  Basically, I had a front row seat to all the behind the scenes workings of a manufacturing company.

At the time I hated that job, but I do believe God always puts you somewhere for a purpose. I have since realized my almost 5 years there taught me invaluable lessons on how to run a business. The president of that company started it as an entrepreneur. He saw my potential and gave me responsibilities that have proved beneficial throughout my life. Most especially in starting/running my own business.

So, no, I'm not an expert. My plan is to share what works for me and what I've noticed works for others as well. I'm sure the topics will expand as I go along, but here's a preview of the first few topics:
  • Starting out Debt Free (and why that's important)
  • Knowing your costs - down to the penny
  • Cohesiveness of Your Products
  • Advertising
  • Knowing when to say no
  • Wholesale accounts  - Is it worth it?
  • Do Social Networks (Facebook, Twitter, etc) work for everyone?
  • Copyright Info - Don't worry, someone will copy your idea
  • Time Management
  • Not every idea you have will be a good one
  • Not everyone will think you're amazing
  • Why you should still have faith in yourself
  • Don't forget where you came from
Business tips will start posting later this week :)


  1. Who is the artist that did the South Shore painting on these tags? Do you know?

  2. I think there were different artist for different South Shore posters, but Hazel Urgelles did this one. You can read more about it here:

    I have a repro of this poster - it's one of my favorites!!