Have you ever noticed in life, how when one door closes (and feels like it is slamming you shut on the outside), that somehow one almost always opens? Now, three plus years in dealing with issue after issue in manufacturing, I am just now starting to get a handle on things. No, this is not the first time I have said this, and I am definitely still not completely there, but it has truly taken me this long to START to get a handle on things. Manufacturing is by far the most challenging aspect of running this business. It affects everything. And, it is the one factor that I can't directly do myself. If we have issues in the office or someone else let's me down, often I will just work longer and harder to get the job done. Manufacturing is different because it is MUCH too much for me to do. We need long-term partners that I can count on. Seems simple, right? Somehow, so many of them have let me down in so many ways.
Yesterday, I was about at my end. I found out that yet another item from our fall line has issues. Yes, I will admit that my standards are high, but my customers deserve this. So, we are facing yet another delay on one of our items. At least our factory understands my standards and is willing to remake garments that do not meet them, but all of this takes more time. I don't have any more time to give!!! Why, oh why, can't a factory just deliver our products on time??
Then, today I realized that yet again, I left my faith somewhere in the dust. Amber get yourself together! Remember, sometimes God's plan is not easy...if we didn't face challenges with one manufacturer, we may not have ever found the right manufacturer. I am a very forgiving and sometimes an easily taken advantage of kind of person. I want to give everyone a 2nd, 3rd and sometimes 4th chance. This is a BIG mistake in business, especially in manufacturing. If they do it more than once, they will do it again. Don't get me wrong, I think everyone deserves a 2nd chance, but that's it. Habits are habits and evidence to me that things will only get worse down the road.
So, today was a nice reminder that often when one door closes, there is another just waiting to be opened. Sometimes change is part of the journey, part of progress. And, delays are disappointing, mostly because I always hate to let down our customers, but sometimes they are needed as part of that progress.
I'm learning and growing, also part of the journey. It never stops.