Then the worry of 'Are we sure that this new person will represent us the way we have spent years building our reputation? Half of your day will be over before you realize what hit you. It took me all of 2 days to realize that customers expect to walk in, discuss their needs, and walk out with a finished product. Having young children at work with us when they are bored and we are busy is not a good mix either. We were very fortunate and not at a loss for customers prior to opening. We just closed our retail and went back to working from home! We chose not to go out of pocket and hire a formal employee to manage customer service. It adds up beyond rent and power and water.
I prefer finishing the entire coffee pot, not grabbing a cup on the way out the door. With needing to produce the orders, we simply do not have time to train someone - and then there are the unrealistic expenses for a small business owner to have legitimate employees. Having young children at work with us when they are bored and we are busy is not a good mix either. It takes more time to babysit a walk in customer than to respond to an online request or resolve an issue for a current customer. It does not happen of course for all orders, but it does not take that expectation away. Not saying in any way that you should not open, just sharing our experience. It was a great experience but there is a lot to consider. We chose not to go out of pocket and hire a formal employee to manage customer service. The newness wears off fast! Half of your day will be over before you realize what hit you. HOWEVER, it only took a year to figure out just how impossible it is to keep up with the demands of maintaining great customer service AND still be able accomplish a fair amount of work. We made our decision for a few reasons. There are business fees, ongoing ordinances that you need to stay on top of, advertising - because now you NEED more customers to cover the overhead- , having lunch delivered because no one has time to leave because customers are always in your shop and you have jobs to produce, late nights because of course now, your equipment is at the store, not at home - no more late nights and lazy mornings in your pjs, the list goes on and on! Bad news travels much faster than good. It adds up beyond rent and power and water. It's exciting to talk to people about what you do, but if they are in your store, they expect your time and if you are rude and short, they will not return. We just closed our retail and went back to working from home! All of that takes time. We spent more time on quotes than ever before and over half were tire kickers, wanna be designers bleeding for information, some just curious about what we did, local competition OR sent in by the competition. By closing, we are saving a few thousand in overhead each month. It took me all of 2 days to realize that customers expect to walk in, discuss their needs, and walk out with a finished product. And you do not want them leaving upset or disappointed. Then the worry of 'Are we sure that this new person will represent us the way we have spent years building our reputation? We were very fortunate and not at a loss for customers prior to opening.
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