Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Profit and Loss Plans, Moving Cabooses and Name Changes

I got good news from my hubby today when he called to tell me the caboose has been moved to it's new location. I did some rejoicing, but it was tempered by the knowledge that I still have to get the final approval from the REAP loan board before I am truly in business.

The knowledge was also tempered later when I found out the movers had forgotten to "flip" the caboose, so what is to be the studio end of the caboose would face the parking lot.

So, from the "kitchen" area, I have a wonderful view of the parking lot where customers will be coming from, and from the "working" or "studio" end I have a wonderful view of a grassy field.

Don't get me wrong, I like grass and green and sky, but I really did want to be able to see my customers coming and have them be able to access the business easily from the parking lot.

Now I have to make the access ramp even longer, and I will have to place the signage differently, because the caboose is also not angled as was planned.

The side facing the road is the side that needs paint, so I will not be able to put that large, time-consuming and expensive chore off, unfortunately.

Since the caboose is located about 300 yards further back from the road than I thought it would be, I will have to be sure to paint it to be extra bright -- I am thinking the red with yellow is the requisite color scheme at this point, although I still prefer the thought of hunter green and yellow.

I am also thinking the addition of a picnic table and some trees to the garden out front to make it inviting for people to visit will be helpful.

I talked with the owner of the caboose, who has some old railroad ties and he said I could use those to make the handicap access ramp. That would be fitting, considering the shop IS in a caboose! They would certainly be sturdy too!

I finished my profit and loss projections for the year and got them turned in. I tried to be as conservative as possible, but could only realistically project amounts for items I have already sold via the gallery and I could only guesstimate the other items.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that despite a large monthly loan payment and other expenses, even with conservative estimates, this is a money-making opportunity -- I was simply hoping to show I could break even. :)

Once I begin working with GROW Nebraska, I expect those numbers to triple through sales via the website I will have them help me build. They also offer numerous other cooperative marketing opportunities and cooperative advertising, as well as "Holiday Shops" at malls across the state, all of which increase sales opportunities and visibility immensely.

Along with the process of doing the P/L estimates, I decided that since this business is getting to be more like a gallery, I should use my name -- for name recognition in the industry purposes -- as part of the business name. So, instead of Sandhills Emporium, I am going with Dawn E. Bryant Designs. I hope I won't regret that decision.

Anyhow, now it is time to hold my breath and pray again, as I wait for the final decision from the loan board. OOOOH, I HATE waiting!

I am so excited (and scared) about the possibility that within a few short weeks I could be a business owner!

I had better go make supper and work on the list of supplies I need to purchase to get everything set up properly.

Happy creating!

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