January '19

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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3 0 P R I N T W E A R J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 9 EMBROIDERY Erich's Embellishments makes this possible. For instance, the article you are now reading in January 2019 was written in November 2018. We have a cal- endar that gives us potential topic categories we could use to plan our content a full year in advance. Though it's tempting to say that such an approach prevents you from being timely, what it actually does, for the most part, is free your time as you will have prefigured the handling of recurring events and won't spend time scrambling or making snap de- cisions about things for which you could have planned. If you've been measuring, or at least pay- ing a modicum of attention to trends in your work, you know the ebb and flow of last year's production and when you are likely to have extremely busy seasons and lulls. Plan accordingly to take on projects (and do pre-emptive promotions) for the lulls, and to set reasonable goals, cut-offs, and to advertise lead times during your busy season(s). You know about holidays on which you intend to hold sales. You know the usual time for machine tune-ups and service. You know the seasons when your employees generally take vacations. You know when your taxes are due. None of these things come as a surprise. Docu- ment them and set up coping strategies to handle them before they occur. Take care not to overfill your calendar just to make it feel complete, and don't worry Even if you're going solo, consultants and content creators in the business are here to help you plan and take on your new commitment. Seek out educators and mentors. Even though they may be busy, they usually take time as they can to respond to questions and often have educational opportunities or content you can take advantage of as you plan for profit and progress. TIPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL YEAR: • Measure your production and profit goals/needs • Set achievable goals for your business, sales, and employees • Rough out your annual schedule with important known deadlines and account for historically busy/slow seasons

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