Mind Your Own Business – Let’s begin

The lead up to Sales day….what happened?

The last two things that needed to happen before Sales day were the completion of the stand and the printing of the Business cards. This seemed to be a difficult task, much more than I had hoped for. Who was left with completing the stand? Myself and Ayush, and the Business Cards? Steffan.

The one difficulty that was encountered whilst trying to complete the tasks was communication, this is always key to progressing as a team and yet it continued to fail in my team…very disappointing. The task for getting the business cards done was poised on the 24th of November, one week prior to sales day and yet they were only produced on the day of sales.

I personally feel a little guilty for speaking about my team in this context but this is also a reflective blog, I personally feel like I should have taken the task as I would have known that it would indeed be completed much sooner but I also wanted to further include my team members into the project. Being a member of a team means that you must fully trust the other members with work and trust that they will do that has been asked of them.

But what about the sales stand I hear you eagerly ask…

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The measurements were a little off…
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Quite a big jump…I am liking what I see
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…Complete. Ready for Sales Day.

Am I happy with the outcome of the Stand?

I am actually very pleased with how the stand worked out, from the concept that Richard came up with to the finished thing I believe that it has stuck with the aesthetic appeal of the stand. The construction was a struggle…with having a limited source of material available I found it difficult to construct the end of the bone that is shown in the image above but after a few trials and errors the sales stand was complete and looking pretty good.

How did it look next to the other stands?

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Surrounded by amazing ideas

The next thing to do from this point is to simply wait for Sales Day.

/Trumpets playing/ It. Has. Arrived!

These past eight weeks have been leading up to this day, going from meeting these people I had never met before, forming ideas, the emotion and the stress, it boils down to this day.

To start on a downer…unfortunately.

I personally could not make the morning of the sales day due to an important appointment, I discussed this with my team a few days earlier to inform them that I would be missing out a big chunk of the day but I would also try and make it in the afternoon before the event had ended. The day prior I gave Ayush all of the merchandise and the uniforms for our team so they were able to begin selling despite my absence. I was a little disappointed to hear that my team had turned up around 9:45am, 15 minutes before things were meant to start, I had hope they they would be in maybe an hour or two before just checking over things.

Things did work out for the best though, by 10:00am the stand was up and the team were present, my team and the business cards!

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The Business Cards! Designed by Ayush.

From the communication I was getting from my team whilst I was not there, things seemed to be going pretty well. I also had some communication from my peers who were around the sales event and there was a common theme occurring, some of my team members found it difficult to present themselves as approachable to any would-be buyers. I can fully relate to this problem as I find it difficult to become presentable to a large number of the public, I am not very confident with communicating with people outside of the circle that I am comfortable with so I could not really blame them in that regard. Obviously in a perfect world everyone would be extroverts or their would be one extrovert in the group that would be the leader of sales, I am pleased nevertheless.

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Some Interest..

I would like to skip what happened during the rest of the day and go straight to the end, what we made and our feelings behind that. We really didnt sell as many as we thought we would.

So…How do we/I feel about this?

Disappointed. Relieved. Unsatisfied. Frustrated. Upset. Let Down. Inspired.

All of the above.

I feel like these eight weeks have been a test for us, we really have taken some beatings when it comes to finding something that we believed would sell. To say we are disappointed to only make £6.05 in profit from the £100 seed fund given at the start would be an understatement. BUT let us look on the bright side, we did indeed make a profit, so what if it isn’t to the scale of Wind Down, another group who racked up around £502 in profit…, or to Cobble who made around £160 in profit on the sales day.

Walking into this project I believed that it would just be about the profits made and making money, I however, have found this experience to be much more than that. I believe that I and many others have learnt not only how to successfully start up a business..we all now have our own business set up. How amazing is that! we could easily develop our business and we could successfully do so if our ideas were right. I would not want to call my groups project a failure, I believe that it is far from that.

For the purpose of me explaining our thoughts I will reference our project as a ‘failure‘, it just seems the easiest way for you, dear reader, to understand.

We have learnt so much from this sales day that it seems like we now have a new perspective on our brand and what possibilities are out there. Due to our failure in not making a large profit compared to others it made us think about how we could have done this project differently, could we have changed something? anything…or everything?

NO NOT AGAIN…PLEASE.

Not everything…but if we take a look back at the feedback we had during the sales day it was quite evident that our uniforms were well received by the public, now this opens up a good question, could we have turned this failure into a success with a different product, would our brand be best suited to apparel perhaps?

We believe that from learning about the target market with our sales day we have learnt much more when compared to our research conducted which was all done via figures and graphs just looking at the wide range of accessories. Humorous simply misjudged the market on our first product, perhaps we were incorrect in thinking from the research that the majority of university students actually wanted to own keychains that had funny internet characters on it, perhaps if this product was shown to a different age bracket..perhaps a younger audience we could sell more. All hypothetical of course.

I would like to think that if given another chance to do this project again I and my team would explore the market of apparel to see what we could come up with, perhaps distancing ourselves with internet ‘memes’ and beginning to create our own illustrations…both humorous and something you would want to wear.

Sticking with our core values was and still is very important to us, this has not changed. Humorous still strive for Excellence, Professionalism (this is kind of difficult to take seriously with a brand named ‘Humorous’…lets roll with it), Diversity, Community and Honesty. I believe that although we struggled as team throughout this project we have still stuck by these throughout, we wanted a product that would appeal to people, that would make someone think ‘I really want this, its so cool’ or ‘oh I should get that for /insert name/’ and although we did not sell out, we did sell quite a few keychains and turn a profit.

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