Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Finally bringing in help.

After working most every day for six and a half months, I found myself going home, taking an hour nap, getting a full night's sleep, and still feeling draggy in the morning.

I'd told myself I'd work alone for the first quarter, and probably not much beyond the second quarter. I paid my State Accident Insurance Fund minimum at the beginning of the year, with the assumption that I'd hire at some time.

Closing Sundays or any other day of the week just wasn't a solution. At best, it would give me one day off at a time. No chance of three or four day vacations. Or even two days in a row, beside the odd holiday. Plus, the sales even on Sundays more than justify having an employee.

I started looking about a month ago, but I have very strict perimeters of what I wanted.

I wanted someone who wanted the job, but didn't need the job.

Someone who could accept working just two days a week at minimum wage.

Someone who has some tech ability.

Someone who has retail experience.

Someone I felt was reliable and honest and could work well with customers. (I had to have someone fairly young, but not so young he didn't know what work was...)

Every time I talked to someone, they had a roadblock that didn't quite fit.

Anyway, I'm bringing in someone who has all the above qualifications, plus....I looked him in the eye and said,

"I have a challenge for you. I want you to enter the entire inventory of Pegasus into the new Point of Sale computer."

Philip didn't seem intimidated by that idea, in fact, his eyes lit up. I can always tell a tech geek by how they respond to those kinds of challenges.

What really impelled this was, we are having our first 'retail' training session for the POS this morning.

Phil came in yesterday, and wouldn't you know it, it was one of the slowest days I've had all year. Every time I wanted to show him something, I realized the POS system would be different, and since the POS would be online in less than two weeks, there wasn't much point.

I spent the day being way too negative. I'm really disappointed with myself. Having a day when we had quite a few people in who didn't spend money was probably not the best start. I'm going to take him aside today and say, "I'd like to start fresh. I was feeling kind of off, yesterday. Let's take a different attitude."

I'm going to have Aaron bring the POS up to the retail counter this morning, after our little session, and place it where the cash register is now. I'm going to move the register over near the phone, and keep using it for the next week or two, and experiment with the POS.

And also get Phil going on getting the inventory into the system. I'm actually willing to hire him a extra day or two beyond the original two, if he'll get going on that.

We've figured we can send Phil over to the Bookmark for a day a week, as well, so he's starting out at a little more than halftime. Between the two stores, if it works out, it could easily turn into a full-time job, especially if Linda and I actually go on vacation once in a while.

I've had a strange reaction. I feel guilty about the idea of taking time off. I know it's irrational, but there it is. I get into a mindset, and it's hard to throw it off. But I also see weeds in my garden, and I haven't gone on a walk all year long, my book reading has declined to a horrible low and comic reading even more so, and so on.

I risk losing Phil to another job, which he has had off and on for a couple of years, but I decided it was worth it. If nothing else, he can help me at first with the Point of Sale system, and maybe stick around long enough for Linda and me to go off somewhere.

1 comment:

mugmkr said...

Yes, we small business owners get into a work rhythm and it is hard to take time off and get away, even when we know it might be a good thing for ourselves and maybe even good for the business. You've got to get back to walking, Duncan. Best exercise there is, cheap, and joyful to boot. Best wishes with Phillip, Owen