I don’t really make resolutions, but I do like to set goals and make rough big picture plans. Sometimes I write them down somewhere but haven’t posted for all to see.
For 2018 our goal was to ramp up our business to the point where I could quit my day job, or make it to the point if something happened at work, I could shift. Something DID happen, the company I contracted with sold off the portion I worked with and while I was offered a very generous package to continue, I took that as a sign and handed in my notice instead.
Once I was done with that in mid-August, my goal for the business was simple: hit X amount in net sales each month. I arrived at a modest total by averaging the monthly sales up until that point. I hit that in September and for October bumped it up a bit more. I kept those totals for November and December and hit those or came close enough.
It turned out that sales also increased as soon as people realized I was working at it full time. Even though we were open mostly full time, some people felt like they were interrupting my other work. I did more marketing and promotion, which helped.
I also learned to not be so hard on myself for not hitting some goals. Remember the saying, reach for the moon and even if you don’t hit it you’ll land among the stars?
That’s enough looking back, let’s look ahead.
Sales goals: this year I’ll take the same amount for the last quarter and apply that going forward. I’m purposely leaving out the actual amount, yes. 🙂 Just know it is a modest achievable goal, maybe even for the summer months. It is still more than my initial monthly sales goal, so the total is going up. Another way to arrive at a similar total is taking this year’s net sales, and bumping it up to the nearest round number, then divide by 12. Close enough! It gives me something to reach for.
Quilting goals: now that I’ve been quilting full time for a few months, I have a better idea of what to expect and how to structure my days. I also know how much I can physically do. Some of the wrangling of fabrics, standing all day, moving a heavy machine, can take a toll on the body and it’s clear I am somewhat out of shape. I also shifted from sitting most of the day to standing for a large chunk of the day. It’s been an adjustment!
In a recent post I said we did 71 quilted items over 2018. I think for 2019 I can handle 2 to 3 quilts a week, depending, which means a goal of 125 quilts.
I know there are many longarmers who quilt 2 to 3 a DAY. I don’t have a computer on mine, and we also run a fabric shop. I also do a lot of custom quilts, which take longer, so a goal of 2-3 a week is pretty good.
On a personal note, I have a goal to place a show quilt in a quilt show not local to me. I am working up to a juried show eventually.
Inventory goals: we will continue to get in new fabrics and notions, providing curated and well selected options according to customer needs, with an eye to modern selections and basics. I want to make sure we have enough business to have things coming in on a regular basis. We use the money that comes in from sales to buy the products we sell.
Overall business goals: my goal for the shop itself is to be a cute little shop with a nice selection of products, be a notable quilter, and have great customer service that is friendly and timely. I would also like to be more transparent in how a business like ours is run, to help educate consumers.
Other goals include:
– releasing our own patterns
– participate in Row by Row
– hold a class or workshop outside of a guild
– be a vendor at a non local quilt show
– promote Canadian quilt pattern designers
Some people pick a word of the year, and some years I do to. For this year for my business, the word is sustainability. This will help keep us focused on what we really want to do overall for our business. We want it to be here not only next year, but 5 and ten years from now. (Side note: I also have 5 and ten year goals.)
So the idea here is, as we grow, to keep the business at a sustainable level both financially as well as physically and mentally. There really is no point in going from one career with a “grind or die, sleep when you’re dead” mentality to another one. I’m here to enjoy what I do.
I love quilting, I love fabric, and I love most of the business aspects around it. I don’t want to burn out. Been there, done that – it’s no fun. 😀
I hope you’ll join me and stick around. It might be a leisurely ride, but it should be fun and interesting.
Linking up with QuiltJediGirl’s planning party!