Saturday, May 26, 2018
NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT
I've got plenty of nothin'
As a creative type, I've never been a number
cruncher. In fact I find the concept of adding
things up more than threatening. Hence for
most of my adult life I blithely mismanaged
my financial resources. Always assuming that
I'd find a way to cover myself as necessary.
Fortunately for me, I was blessed by periodic
financial windfalls. Usually just rewards for
traumatic events such as being sold, phased,
or booted out. All helped make me financially
secure. Even if I'd no idea what my net worth
was... or wasn't. After all, isn't that the kind
of thing one pays accountants to worry about?
Hand it over
One thing I've never liked was being told what
to do. Especially if it was something I abhorred.
Therefore rather than consult financial experts,
I foolishly did whatever I wanted to do with
my money. Which in hindsight put my chances
of long term financial stability at risk. Now the
the last thing I want to worry about is the future.
Yet I do. So I've handed everything over to the
only man I trust in the world - Frank. Long ago
he was my savior. The one who pulled me out
of my morass and empowered me to do great
things. And given timing is everything, what
better time to initiate an encore performance?
Two plus two equals one
Transferring responsibility for our personal
finances doesn't mean that I'm off the hook.
Since starting our antiques business I have
been tasked with figuring things out. Having
worked in retail for eons - in theory such a
task should be easy. However I was never
a merchant. Which means that while I know
the mathematics of gross margin, markdowns,
and the like, I never had to balance the books.
Now I'm confronted with a new reality. One
that requires that I put two and two together...
literally. And most important, figure out how
to make a decent profit in the process.
Pluses and minuses
Over four months into this, I'm still adding or
subtracting. Which means much of my day is
spent sitting in my office in front of my laptop.
It would be easier if we were simply buying
new stuff from reliable resources. Yet what
could be more boring? Part of the thrill of
dealing in antiques and vintage wares is the
hunt itself. The process of discovery where
you uncover a hidden jewel nobody knew
about. Even more important is pricing those
treasures at a rate somebody is willing to pay.
Fortunately I'm figuring it all out slowly but
surely. And let me tell you - it's hard work!
All of which means that at least for the time
being, I'm deep in the midst of a learning
curve. One which can seem like a tsunami.
Given it's our money I'm dealing with - the
last thing I want is to make a mistake. But
it's rare of viable growth experience don't
involve trial and error. So far I've figured
out that underestimating shipping costs can
wipe out your entire profit. Or that the wrong
price on an item's tag guarantees some buyer
wins and we lose. One thing is certain - I'm
not going to let the numbers to crunch me in
the process. So if I seem overwhelmed, I am!