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entrepreneurship


8 very bad ideas we had so far

Posted by Brice Salmon on

(and how we managed to stay mentally balanced, despite it all )


Hi everyone!

In our infinite quest of pursuing transparency and happiness, we've decided to share today with you a couple of bad ideas we had so far. Why the bad ones? Well:

  • They arouse a very large panel of emotions and as human beings, it feels good to share hard moments.
  • We learn - the hard way - a lot more from them than from nice shots.
  • They may be funny sometimes. (Also, good ones may be boring.)

CHAPTER ONE

Bad money-related ideas

 

Using our cash flow to buy equipment. That one hurts. We didn't know what credit margins and loans were. We used to buy everything cash and wondering why we couldn't afford to make more new products. Problem solved!


Paying too much for workshop rent. We had the chance to find a fantastic deal last Spring thanks to the famous illustrator Isabelle Arsenault who was looking for co-workers. We now have twice the space for half the price in a better area!! Unicorns exist somehow.

Not putting enough money aside for taxes. Surprise! It's Spring again!

"In this world, nothing can be said to be certain,
except death and taxes." — Benjamin Franklin

CHAPTER TWO

The Cerberus syndrome

Making sales and purchases reports by hand. Yes. By hand. Excel and the whole stuff. If you really don't care about having a social life, just do your accounts with Excel. We kinda lost our friends but they understand. Problem solved :)

Trying too many things at the same time. At the very beginning, we wanted to do cream puffs. For real. Then, we built a pasta machine (for real, just see: http://www.glasgowstudio.com/#/eatthat/) . After that, we designed wooden domino games, a linen collection... all at the same time. That time is done, now we focus. Problem solved.

CHAPTER THREE

Timing is key

Hiring the right people but at the wrong moment. "If we could turn back time" today, we would be with them working hard, hanging out, maybe at the ice cream truck who knows? Instead, we're in Montreal and lucky to be here after all.

Not having a plan. The worst plan is definitely to not have a plan, taught me my physiotherapist last year. He's so right that I found myself injured running without a plan. Today, with a clear project and consistency, I'm about to run a marathon next month, which was absolutely unthinkable 6 months ago. It's the same for the job: Openness, consistency, gratefulness and a plan are now part of our fundamentals to achieve our goals.

 

Special mention goes to

Participating in events (like markets) without even knowing them. We did that (sadness/deep shame emoticon face). It's been very fun and somehow inspirational though.

 

Ok, now you can stop laughing or cry, let's say they were all "experiments" :) What are your biggest mistakes so far this year and how did you overcome them? We'd love to hear your stories!!

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Comeback on my first year at Baltic Club

Posted by Brice Salmon on

Greetings! It's been one year now that I quit my beloved job to create my own one, also beloved but in a different way. Quick comeback on a crazy year and what I've learned since "the big jump".
 

EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE

I will always remember that feeling of a fresh start on the very first day I worked 100% for Baltic Club. Everything was as clear as frightening but as being said say, "Magic happens out of your comfort zone", I was really excited by all this. Far far away from imagining what was going to happen, I decided to let go and to enjoy each moment. What's helping a lot is Melanie, being so extraordinary, so relax, I think we have way too much fun.

Magic happens out of your comfort zone quote

What was really new for me at this moment: In front of you, blank pages, empty folders, no procedure, no methodology, no "business culture". If you do nothing, nothing moves forward. It may sound a little bit weird but for me, this concept wasn't applicable to the business at all. Actually, it does apply very well :)

Plans change a lot, almost every day. The difficulty here is definitely to stay focus. Saying yes to every opportunity is not a viable solution: You can try, take risks but you have to calculate all the time.

Having the opportunity to make new products anytime, talk to new people, discover new places ALL THE TIME is overwhelming.

You have no limit in terms of work, of time spent to make your things, of places to work from... you taste freedom on a daily basis and it's magic but it leads me to the next point.

 

HEALTH

Even if I love what I do, sometimes I go too far and tend to forget that, to think properly, I need a healthy body. I didn't realize how important it was to find a balance, hence I took this opportunity to work on personal skills like consistency or self-control. Now I run a lot and eat more healthily. I also take care of my sleep in order to charge up my batteries more efficiently.

 

NOBODY'S WAITING FOR YOU, NOBODY CARES

"Ok, you've quit your job, so what?" No big deal for a lot of people, especially those who never knew what's it's like to be an employee. As soon as I was on my own, I knew that nobody was waiting for me and nobody cared. Building something, including my own identity as a business owner is quite a challenge but gives me the opportunity to have my own voice, expressing what I genuinely think at the moment I think is the best. I frequently ask myself: "What would this person do?" and I love it.

 

AN OPPORTUNITY TO KNOW ME A LITTLE BIT MORE

I've also learned that I didn't just win a dream job but instead, the chance to enjoy multiple aspects of the entrepreneur life: Accountant, designer, I can answer emails, packing stuff, delivering products and cleaning the floor of the workshop in the same morning. My mission and my dreams are very different today compared to what they were one year ago. For instance, I wanted Baltic Club to grow in terms of employees but finally, Melanie and I feel more happy and comfortable in small teams. I also thought that taxes reports were piece of cake...

Today, I'm more eager to focus on what really matters. It takes strength and courage on a daily basis and I definitely feel stronger, less crazy, wiser, I say "no" more often, I get rid of what's not lifting me up and as Frederic, one of my mentors, said to me one day: "Elevate yourself!"

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