Jean Blacklock

reflections on being an entrepreneur

Latest stories

Expansion update!

Recently Andrew met the owner of a Canadian 85-store retail business who told Andrew to pass this along to me: opening stores gets much, much easier after the 10th store. This is good news and bad news. The good news is that apparently opening stores gets much, much easier after the 10th store. The bad news is I have stores 4 through 10 still to go. However, I have to say- this time around, I...

Intention 2.0

Last week I wrote about reflecting on intended outcomes before events, and how that has helped me. I also mentioned another way the word “intention” has floated around for me this fall. It is best summed up by a quote from Stephen Covey: “We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their actions” At the same time I was thinking about how we tend to give ourselves more leniency...

Intentions

Five days after my last post, I signed a lease for a new store in Markham. The realtor said that the negotiation period was extremely quick. In my last post I’d complained how long it was taking. It’s not news that I am impatient but interesting that Ali would describe that particular deal as fast. I need to  remember this because pace was also mentioned in a conversation with a...

Plodding on

Minnie, my cat, climbs under our bedspread after I make the bed, creating an unusual hill in the middle of the otherwise smooth bed. If I pet this little lump, I hear a small grumpy meow – an acknowledgement I exist, a request to go away. Looking back over the starts and stops of the last few months, I’m sure that if some mornings I’d joined Minnie under the bedspread I would...

Doing what’s in front of us

In May of 2015 I wrote here: Currently in the business we’re promoting our customizing capabilities (the edible printer’s toppers and cakes); launching the online sale of packaged frozen gluten free minis; starting to plan the cookbook launch early next year; and exploring the idea of doing more in the wedding market. It is hard to keep straight some days where each project is at – a good sign...

Decision-making

I got an email from a friend last week in which she weighed the  pros and cons of making a big change in her work life. She was very undecided and I could see why. I suggested that she try a big-decision-making technique that has worked for me. In a nutshell, it is to not decide.  I tell myself that today, right in front of me, I don’t have a decision to make, that I would be foolish to...

June & July Update

Just read my May update. I’m not sure blogs are supposed to work this way, but reading it was a nice little pep talk from my May self to my July self. Where did that sweet May Jean go? Don’t get me wrong – still expanding, still excited, but as I predicted back in May, the actual process of expanding is a lot of work and reality has set in that deciding to do something is one thing, but doing it...

May Update

May was a great month! I took two fun trips with Andrew for his work, we took our daughter Rebecca to New York to see Dear Evan Hansen (very good!) and I went for a quick but really fun trip to Calgary for a surprise party for our son Tom’s 25th birthday. But even with all that excitement in my personal life, the month was even better on the PGB front. Not because of unprecedented sales or...

Protein Pixies

The protein fortified cupcake project continues **but** at some point in the  last month, I decided that instead of just thinking of the product as a wholesale offering, why not try to sell them in-store and see how they do. There’s two ways we can do this. The first way is to simply add them to our existing menu in the same way that we have gluten free and vegan. The other way is to create...

Sales

Imagine my surprise when I started practicing law and it dawned on me that sales was involved. If I wanted to become a partner in the  firm, I needed to find a way to build my practice. I gave a “lot” of community education seminars about Wills. Then I joined a bank and – lo and behold- discovered that banks are sales organizations: shareholders don’t want to see the same...

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