Posts Tagged ‘business’

The other day I watched one of my favorite movies, Baby Boom.  It’s a predictable chick flick made in 1987 that I can watch over and over again because it gives me a feeling of business/creative empowerment.  The story in a nutshell: heavy hitter, single business woman working for a large marketing firm inherits a baby, moves to the country, experiences many pitfalls to owning a country house on many acres of orchard, learns to make applesauce out of boredom and necessity, sells the applesauce as “gourmet baby food” and becomes a huge success in her own right.  Cool, right?  And plus the movie stars Diane Keaton, who I love.

A pivotal scene in the movie is when Diane Keaton is at her wit’s end and is contemplating burning down her money pit country house.  She ordered two dozen cans of kerosene at the store when two yuppie couples come in.  The city couples go mental when they see Diane Keaton, her baby and the homemade applesauce with its cute country packaging.  “Gourmet baby food!  Fabulous idea!”  They buy a couple dozen jars each.

Gourmet baby food! Fabulous idea!

Lately I’ve been working on some new drink charm sets and am pursuing a new way of marketing my bottle cap magnets.  I’m also testing some lovely little beeswax container candles.  New twists on things I’ve been making for years.

Not one of my new sets, but a best seller. Who can resist the characters of Oz?

I’m excited about the new charms and “twists” I’ve come up with.  When I hit the shows this summer I’ll see people look at my wares, pick them up, inspect them and tell me, “fabulous idea!”  Those are the times that make a crafter proud.

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Isn’t that a fun little jingle?  I love this commercial with its peppy ba-ba-da and the very suave voice-over.

I just renewed my business standing with the State of Minnesota.  Auntie B’s Wax has been in business for eight years!  Hooray for me!  It seems like just yesterday I was pouring my first candle in the kitchen of Husby’s and my newlywed house.  Who knew that would grow into a legitimate and successful business?  I would have never guessed it then, but now it doesn’t surprise me a bit.

The other day Husby and I went to the bank to do some adjusting on the business bank account, then went out to dinner at the expense of Auntie B’s Wax, LLC.  It was the annual Employee Appreciation dinner Auntie B’s Wax’s owner and CEO (me) gives to her employee (Husby) every year in appreciation of his help and support throughout the year.

When the waiter came and asked for our drink order I was delighted to hear Husby order a Stella Artois.  He’d never tasted it before and said it was really good.  I was kind of hoping he’d start talking like the commercial voice-over guy after he took a sip, but that didn’t happen.  Oh well.

Husby celebrated the chalice which celebrates the Stella Artois. I celebrated the pinot grigio. We both celebrated Auntie B’s Wax.

I’m looking forward to another summer season visiting and working the shows and festivals and am happy to have my roadie by my side through it all. Raise your glass of Stella (or whatever else you prefer) to another successful year for Auntie B’s Wax.

Today, not only am I filled with appreciation for my employee but also to my customers and readers of this blog.  To show this appreciation I’m going to give you the chance to own a piece from the Auntie B’s Wax Etsy shop.  Go check out the shop and in the comments below tell me what item you like the best and why.  Three lucky commenters will receive their favorite item compliments of Auntie B and her appreciation for you.  If there are three or less commenters, everyone’s a winner!

Offer ends at 11:59 p.m. April 1, winners will be notified via e-mail on April 3.  Thank you, and good luck!

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Let’s talk a little bit about external validation.  Oh, such a heavy topic for a Monday morning and certainly not the kind of thing I typically write about here, but I’m interested to hear what anyone has to say about the subject.

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like a pat on the back or some congratulations on a job well done.  And hardly anyone wants to be criticized or judged.  External influences are all around us, every day, constantly, and affect who we are and who we will ultimately become.  The question is, how much of that validation or feedback do you allow to affect you? 

Carl Jung ~ my hero

We derive our energy either internally or externally.  Some people thrive on constant contact with people and feel invisible or inferior when their actions/opinions are not reciprocated with some kind of feedback (extroverts).  Others find enough satisfaction and validation within themselves and don’t have much need for what others think of them or their actions (introverts). 

What brought me to this subject matter today is realizing the difference between personal validation and business validation.   When it comes to introverts and extroverts on a personal level I don’t think one is better or worse than the other ~ they’re just two different ways of processing.  But when it comes to a business, it’s becoming more clear to me that extroversion will win over introversion every time.  Can a business actually have a personality that can be analyzed as introverted or extroverted, or is a business the reflection of the personality type of the person who runs it?

How well does a business grow without external validation?  If people don’t like the product they will not buy it and the business fails.  When considering an artsy/crafty business, is it better to be run by an extrovert?  Should introverts create simply for the sake of creating and keep the business aspect out of the picture?

I know, I know, it’s all a matter of the “target market.”  But then creating is still reduced to the amount of external validation one receives, the positive response to products, if the creator seeks earning a living from her creations.

How much external validation do you need?  How much work will you put forth to receive that validation?  Is the validation necessary to your perceived idea of success?  These questions apply both personally and on a business level.  I, as a business, have hit the wall of conflict.  Should I create what I like and hope for the best or kowtow to the masses and give them what they want?

Ideally I’d like to convince people they really want my product.  That’s salesmanship.  Salesmanship comes more naturally to an extrovert, which I am not.  But that’s a blog post for another day.

If you’re interested in finding out whether you’re an introvert or extrovert (in case you don’t know already), there’s a little online quiz you can take based on Carl Jung’s and Isabel Briggs Myers’ approach to personality.  You can find it by clicking here.  Let me know how it turns out.

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