I am buried in blueprints and city ordinance paperwork (ugh) right now, but I wanted to take a moment to personally wish you a Happy New Year! (Yes, I know it’s a little late….)
I’ve been very touched by all the personal emails I’ve received in the past few weeks from customers letting me know how much they like my book, or just in general, how much they like Blue Buddha. I am always amazed when someone takes the time to praise us by email; I know I myself am rarely impressed enough with a business to put compliments in written words. So thank you one and all!
A recent blog post commented on how incredible it is that the business has grown so much in the past few years. Four years ago, it was just myself plus Vanessa helping out with weaving. Now Blue Buddha has 11 employees, and Vanessa has started her own jewelry business.
Because we’ve grown so quickly, processes and procedures often become obsolete in mere months. We are constantly revising how we do things as the business evolves. One thing that we want to keep the same, though, is our commitment to putting people first–both customers and employees.
About a month ago, I was offered the chance to participate in a program that would help propel my business to an entirely new level. At first, I was extremely excited about this chance, but the more and more I thought about it, the more I realized I did not want to do it. I find it interesting how so many businesses, especially larger corporations, are obsessed with growth and chasing a bigger number. I don’t believe in growth just for growth’s sake, nor do I think growth by every single company across the board is sustainable. Sure, there’s a certain “number” I’d like to grow my company to, but I don’t feel the need to reach that number in a year. My attitude may be unconventional in the businessworld, but you know what? Our business is unconventional! Over the past few years I’ve learned to trust what my inner voice says. This coming year, by purposely not focusing on madly galloping toward a huge sales number, I look forward to having the time and mental energy to focus on that inner voice, and lay out a solid plan to make Blue Buddha a better company inside and out. The growth will happen naturally.
Though Blue Buddha does a lot of things right, we still have lots of things that we could improve. Our focus for 2011 will be improving as many of those things as we can: enhancing our website; reducing errors in orders; creating more kits for easy customer shopping; continuing to increase the percentage of our findings and raw materials that are 100% Made-in-the-USA; plus a lot of behind-the-scenes streamlining. We’re also moving to a much larger space which will allow us to have regular retail hours. All in all, we’re looking to ensure that we are serving our customers in better ways, supporting American manufacturers, creating local jobs, and continuing to develop an outstanding work environment. Yep, it’s all about the people in 2011.
I think you’ll be excited to watch our company continue to evolve. We’re planning a few surveys this year to ensure that we evolve in ways that best meet your needs, but remember that you can always send us feedback at any time.
And trust us, you won’t believe where we’re at this time next year!
Owner, Blue Buddha