Describe what you do in 5 words: Owner, buyer, designer, visual merchandiser
Our customers love our business because...
We have a wonderful connection with them. We are always cheerful, helpful and design new products to showcase at each Reed Gift Fairs.
A day in the ‘new normal’ is…
Filled with reorganising, cleaning, painting and making our office and warehouse work better than ever before. Each day we get stuck into the tasks we never had time to do.
We run two businesses, the head office in Australia and sister operation in California USA. I am used to working in chaos, always trying to find things and designing in between the cracks of always being on the road or too busy.
This strange time has been a blessing for us on many ways - stopping the chaos and demands to allow us to regroup .
COVID-19 and how it affected us:
We had the best Reed Gift Fairs Sydney February ever with so many orders - suddenly, without warning everything stopped. Stores closed, fairs cancelled, customer orders put on hold. It was so confronting and I thought I would start to panic. Then as I gradually realised that this affected everyone, not just us, I could use this time to reorganise and design and to recreate ourselves in the vacuum of time we suddenly were in.
There was so much we never had time for before: catalogues, line sheets, email lists, improving our website and working on our social media, learning new skills for our business. Ringing our customers to see if we could help - inspiring them and helping them get through this. And most of all, time to design new products.
How have you managed your team throughout this?
I am encouraging them to get systems in place, to improve the way we work. We have lots of cups of tea and we work together on designing and organizing. It’s fun and very rewarding and we are happy.
What have you heard from your customers?
Mainly sad feedback. I have encouraged them to use this time to rework their stores changing things around; painting, redoing displays, changing window displays often, leaving little notes in the window for any passing trade. Planning on reopening with a fresh new look, fresh flowers and music playing and scented candles burning. There is so much to do to improve the way we run our businesses.