Thursday, January 21, 2010

Cold Spring to Poughkeepsie

Patrice came in to tell me she would take the job!

We had spoken the week before about her revamping my Cold Spring store - creating events that showcased Equal Exchange's Rooibus Tea and my connection with the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency books; bring Goody Goodies to a new level, where the org would actively promote fair trade products in support of fundraising efforts; formalizing my new idea of supplying fair trade essential and carrier oils and also having a "bar" where people could make their own skincare many ideas I have that stay just that. Patrice could be the person to actually make them happen...

It was the idea of hiring her that prompted my serious look at the store in Cold Spring.

Many factors needed to be addressed:

1. Sales - The Poughkeepsie Plaza store showed me that while we in the USA were still in recession, there was money being spent. The Poughkeepsie Store generated great sales during the holidays! The Cold Spring store did not.

2. Distance - Cold Spring was over 45 minutes away. The day after there was a burglary, when there is snow, when a customer wanted to come in on days we were closed, there was very little I could do about it because we lived so far away.

3. Book - We finally got a book proposal out to an agent. Now, we actually have to write a book! When would I do that with two stores to manage and work in?!?

4. Loyalty - Cold Spring is where Peter, the kids and I have always considered "home". 66 Main St's landlord was our neighbor while we lived in CS and a good, understanding, supportive landlord and friend these past two years. Portia has been an excellent sales person, working full time while we were in Africa two summers ago. I couldn't have wished for a more capable and knowledgeable assistant manager. After 4 years on Main Street, fellow shop owners have been my closest allies which is why I ran for the Board of the Cold Spring Chamber of Commerce. How do I walk away from all of these people?

I don't.

My difficult decision to move the store, which is what I have to do, comes due to all of these factors and so much more. While Women's Work will not have a presence in Cold Spring as of February, I will see if any of the other stores would like to carry some of the products I had done so well with like the Heirloom Rice, Project Have Hope Beads, Equal Exchange coffee/tea/chocolate, to name a few...

From Poughkeepsie, I can post flyers and market events so that the much larger population base here can be made aware of the many happenings in Cold Spring and Garrison - charming, sleepy historic villages that are well worth the day trip from Poughkeepsie and beyond.

And with 66 Main Street's door closing, I can move forward with some of my other projects hopefully with Patrice and most definitely taking all that I've learned from the inception of WW in 2006 to today.

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