While all the goodies and surprises are happening on the Membership Party email list, I wanted to share with you today's thoughts from the email. Make sure you're on the the list so you don't miss anything.
Let's talk about something that can come off, well, quite frankly, a bit snobby. First, here's some back story.
In one of our recent expert hangouts for members, a financial organizer spoke of a word that gave me a lightbulb moment. She talked about how a lot of people have "jobbies."
Jobbies are essentially hobbies that happen to also make you money. Which I thought was the PERFECT way to describe a lot of people in the craft space.
There are many people who enjoy making things. They can MAKE ALL THE THINGS and throw them up on Etsy and repeat the cycle. They are even really good at making those things. They might even decide to make those things and sell them at a farmer's market or craft show. More money-- yay!
But just because they are making money does not mean that they have business. A business has intent. It has strategy. It has perseverance. It has end goal in mind.
A jobby can be put on hold. If life gets busy and the jobby needs to go away it totally can. No dreams are crushed and plans for success aren't thwarted. It's just a thing you do that makes you happy and sometimes people buy what you make and that feels nice.
This is NOT to demean jobbies or hobbiests. In fact, I think they are great! I think the more people making the better-- it helps give everyone a greater understanding of exactly how hard craft and even commerce can be. It's a way for some people to either pay for their hobbies or make a little bit more by doing something they already do. If you see yourself as a jobbiest-- then I think you are very lucky in so many ways!
This is also not a dig at doing your "side hustle" thing part time. Because a side business or a part-time job is still a business and a job. They aren't any less of a business because you "don't need that money" (hey! lots of rich people do things to make them more money that they don't need). In fact, we have members who take their handmade business VERY seriously, but for lots of reasons still commit to another job either full time or part time. So part-time business is STILL very much business.
*whew* OK... I hope I haven't mangled that to much. Where I am going with this long caveat is when you're in business to be a business (full time or part time), your mindset is TOTALLY different. You want this thing to succeed and you have plans for where you want it to go. While you might not enjoy all of the finer points of business (few makers tell me how much sales tax and accounting delight them), managing your business, along with pushing your craft, gives you a sense of pride and accomplishment.
"LOOK MA! I made this happen!" You did... you totally did.
As you continue to consider membership, think about if intentionally surrounding yourself with fellow handmade business owners will help you. People who are also pushing to the next level. People who are looking at their business the same way you are looking at yours. People who know that business means getting their legal, financial, marketing, product and selling houses in order as much as they need to work on their craft. Other people who just get it!
I know I keep giving you a lot to think about. Again, please feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have ANY questions at all. I look forward to continuing this conversation.