Let me place a couple disclaimers before i get started. This blog is meant as a casual look behind the scenes for our companies website , http://www.ourinitiative.org ( under construction at the moment) , in attempt to provide a more accurate and insightful one on one talk and interaction kind of feel to these posts there will not be a heavy focus here on proper/corporate punctuation, grammar, or formatting. What is on my mind is what will be struck by my keyboard into existence, nothing more.
I hope i will be excused the teeny tiny Breakfast at Tiffanys segue into the topic today. This is likely to be a long post because there is a lot on my mind today. Firstly we have the total and utter flop which was suppose to be my companies grand stepping out party. Secondly we have a redesign of the website going on. Thirdly i have to address taking so long for a follow up post. Fourthly i have to talk about my pepper plants because.. gosh ill just have to get to it in the post later . Fifthly i have to kind of gather my thoughts and see where to go from here. Sixthly I might have to rant a bit on how non profit seems to get more and more profit minded everyday… and is that ok? Well enough talking about what I’m going to talk about.. now lets actually talk about it ok?
First off.. Hello! its been awhile!Last we talked i was gearing up for my little companies big stepping out party. The response was not just lackluster.. it was just downright non existent. Following that post I watched the ticket sales page each day waiting for a few tickets to go before i posted more information. When it came down to just a couple weeks before the event, with 0 tickets sold, i opted to just get my deposit back from the venue. no reason to start a company off in the red after all. I realize looking back and discussing with a business consultant how this was a self reinforcing failure. I was waiting for others to come on board.. i projected a lack of sense in direction, leadership.What ever info i had or was planning i should have released.. i should have given ” the people” more than just a date and a blank venue. Of course i had my reasons for not doing so.. i was not sure of the number so if i would have had larger than expected response i wanted to be able to upgrade the venue without causing confusion. The list goes on. I have been informed, and can logically see for myself where that was a mistake. Additionally this thing was not advertised. again i had my reasons.. i hate advertising..spending money convincing people to buy/participate in my product, i feel there is enough of that going around but the lesson in hindsight is even some very simple Google Adwords advertising could have turned a slow start event into what i was expecting. Additionally the lack of advertising ,as i saw.. turned a POTENTIALLY slow starting event into a ” no start at all” kind of thing. Lessons have been learned and i will try to apply these lessons better in the future. MOVING ON!
On SECOND base we have.. a website reboot/redesign. As i said i have spent a few hours with a business consultant working on how i can approve public confidence and appeal in my companies image. I really liked the design we had previously, but the consultant brought up several flow and ” cut and paste feel” of the website which could lead to a “cheap” image for the company. Naturally this is something i want to avoid. We put A LOT of work into anything we do so being told we will be taken as “cheap”..its both a bit frustrating and bewildering but honestly sometimes the book IS judged solely by the cover and if you are wanting peoples money they will want a “richer” experience. To that end i am currently seeking a web designer to rehash everything from the homepage onward so if you know someone willing/able to help just drop me a message and we can work out some kind of pay for this gig. Its not a lot of work.. 5 MAYBE 10 pages of simple clean concise content.
Rounding THIRD…, It HAS been awhile since i posted and i am sorry, cant exactly be the pulse on the community if you don’t post for months at a time. We have just had some difficulty getting some things shuffled around and the posts have suffered. Part of it was a bit of confusion bewilderment how no one seemed to want to join in our call to arms and talk about what YOU as a people want done.I realize this goes against our consumer programing. In our economy we are basically programmed into ” shut up and buy” im not going off on a conspiracy theory, or hippified (not a real word) rant. It is just the truth.When we look at where we was as an industrial center and powerhouse of an economy 100 years ago..and where we are today as the number one “consumer” nation that just implies a shift from being ABOUT making this or that… to a shift AWAY from thinking about this or that and instead just saying ” how much?”, Luckily though we have begun to reverse that back but it shows how the average consumer isn’t used to “thinking” when they buy something…. true there is brand a versus brand b and which is better which is more expensive which is a better deal yadda yadda.but a lot of people today rely on that … canned product to be there for them to evaluate. This company is not , and will not ever be a canned product.. too much blood sweat and tears goes into it to ever consider it such. so whats the use of what i have just went on ranting about? Its about ease of availability, its about not demanding your “customer” to tell you what they want because that is a loaded question” what product would YOU like us to make?” the choice is too abundant to focus on just one thing. So we will move ahead, doing what we desire, and if people say there’s something we can improve on we will listen and evaluate how it fits us as a company. We have an open door policy with public participation and we WANT people to use it.
( half-way done don’t give up you can do it!)
Heading for Fourth! ( or what would be home if i only had 4 topics today!) Fourthly we have to talk about my pepper plants. Bell and jalapeno to be specific. Earlier this year i decided i would try my hand and growing my own salsa. This means raising , from seed, tomatoes , bell peppers , jalapeno peppers, onions, cilantro and corn. So i went about doing some research about ripening times and i was not prepared to find out in our zone of Ohio, 6 A (gardeners farmers will know what this means) you have to start the vining plants indoors about 8-10 WEEKS two MONTHS ahead of time before you ever put them in the ground. Luckily i was at the very tail end of the acceptable “starting indoors: stage for our region to give them a good producing time in the ground before the frost. Well sadly many tragedies have befell them. First being a dead packet of tomato seeds.. not ONE tomato sprout in all fo the 30 i planted. The jalapeno peppers was slow to take off and i had about 10 seedlings of those… but the BELL peppers.. those things just took off… 20 seedlings.. i was going to be looking at baskets and baskets of peppers, i was excited. Unfortunately their first night hardening off( again gardeners will know) a big fat beetle munched away one of my bell peppers… then recently they was caught outside in a rather terrible storm we had, only half of all the seedlings survived. And then just yesterday , somehow in the light wind with the seedling tray being properly weighted down they fell off of the porch rail and that night bugs got to them and just annihilated what was left of them. so sad after the month and a half we shared…maybe there is TWO seedlings that will survive.. but i forget which kind of pepper they was. So long story short no home grown salsa this year.. too late to start more seedlings because of the short producing season they would have without a proper greenhouse..oh well..
FIFTH but not least or last…! Gathering my thoughts and seeing where to go from here… well that would be an easy answer…. upward and onward. There is very rarely only one path to a certain place and in case there it.. it means no one has trail blazed a second path yet. I knew there was going to be growing pains getting into this.. and a couple followers wouldn’t equal a 400 person town hall to be an instant sell out. I appreciate you all, really i do. Taking the time out of your lives to follow up on what we are doing its really warming to an old soul. The next steps however are to focus on finding a web designer for the website (again if you know someone send them my way), and getting a small event on the books.. almost unrelated to ” non profit” just holding.. i don’t know some kind of game tournament here in Cincinnati and have the prize money be the main draw.. then on the day of the event while i have the attention bring up what we are and what we are about and develop the companies savings a bit. Maybe i will focus on a couple of these, just kind of get out there a little bit and focus on having some fun before we get the red carpets and glitz rolling.
Wow you really made it all the way through? Congratulations you are now officially a ” cool kid”! Just wrapping things up.. website is being reworked….pepper plants are bug food if left in the dirt overnight….never as a company sit back and let the people ” come to you” get out there and ENGAGE!.. much like this blog is meant to do.. i could easily just keep all this to myself and be rather blank and corporate in my words,announcements. .but i find that’s just gross.. it doesn’t suit me at all.. so here is ME..engaging with YOU. I feel i have rambled enough for one post so i will switch off now and get back to work but its always fun guys , thanks!