Order Gatherers

You’ve heard this before but it hits a lot of florists this time of year. Since last year in the Saint Louis area we have lost 4 or more florists. Some are closing their doors after 30, 40, and others 50 years in this industry.

Some due to illness, death and some because the next generation just doesn’t want to carry the torch for whatever reason.  It’s not that we don’t have a website or that we are not up on technology. Its really about the order gatherers cutting into our profits.

When FTD started out it was solely florists, when the company changed hands it went to a company that did not know this industry to keep the business integrity going.  Now it’s a big corporation.

There are a lot of order gatherers out there and they usually sell their flowers cheap or they prefer to say “low prices”.  For example, you order a $39.99 arrangement, depending who you order it through the money is cut down to $29.99 when the florist gets it. Then the final payment to the florist is $21.89.

You complain that the order is not to value, now you know why. Another person orders a $69.99 arrangement through an order gatherer. The order gatherer takes $25 off the top and sends the florist an order for $44.99. The recipe is now for a deluxe arrangement with 5 red roses, 5 red carnations and 3 leatherleaf. The customer immediately complains that the order is not filled to value and wants a refund. He’s right but doesn’t know why. Again take 27% off the $44.99 and I get paid $32.84.

In each of these cases the local florist gets cut out of the profit.  In wach of these cases had the customer ordered straight from the local florist you would get full value plus personal attention.  As florists dealing with order gatherers we are given a recipe to follow that is based on price per stem. As individual florists we charge that way anyway, but with order gatherers, they are not concerned about my pricing just theirs.

I have to do 70-100 orders a month just to make money with order gatherers. You as the public can turn that around for all of the florists and come straight to us. Sure the ads look good but is it really worth the hassle when you can pick up the phone or order through our individual websites and become regular customers getting full value for your arrangements, baskets, or whatever you order.

We as florists end up shutting our doors because you won’t come see us or you go to the grocery stores because they are there and  convenient when there is a mom and pop florist or one with current technology wanting your business and you look the other way.

Some go the cheap route, but even we as florists can service you also. In the off holiday portions I run a $19.99 sale on roses cash and carry. Others do a $12.99 cash and carry.  During the holidays expect to pay more. Saint Patrick’s Day, Easter, and Mother’s Day are coming up. Visit your local florist, please.

If you have vases that you no longer want or need take them to a florist near you and most will take them.  Make sure they are not chipped or broken when you do take them to a floral shop. Thank you. Feel free to comment.

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Merry Christmas

Christmas has become a time of year when presents have over shadowed the true reason for the season. Yes, as a business owner I want you to buy from me as well. Some over spend and find themselves in debt while others are more conservative.

All I have to say is spend wisely.  There are so many out of work.  I have jewelry, plants, home decor and more in my shop.  We are more than just flowers.

Have a great holiday and be safe.

Merry Christmas.
http://www.heartfilledcreations.com

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Posted in Happy Holidays

Heart Filled Creations LLC Logo

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Posted in Administrative Assistants, Easter, Florists, Happy Fathers Day, Holiday Thanksgiving, Memorial Day, Time Management, Uncategorized

Holidays of Thanksgiving

Hello readers, I have been out of the net for a while. I am building my floral business gaining new clients and repeat business. We pride ourselves in doing things God’s way.  We have fresh product at all times, we keep live plants all the time in the shop. Some products are available online.

The real meaning of this season is being thankful. Giving thanks for what you have. People don’t have a lot of things and too many are living on then street.  What do you have? Are you thankful for what you have? Are you able to help someone else? Are you one to share or one to hord what you have?

As a business owner have you hired a veteran? Or are you just looking for experience? To many times we look to cut someone out than to include someone in what we are doing or where we are going. There needs to be more reaching back and pulling someone up especially when you know they are a great fit for your business or organization.

Ask these questions and others easy to answer or hard? What is the true meaning of “Thankful”.  What does this word alone mean to you? It means to me the fact that I’m blessed to be a blessing. I don’t get things just for me. I am a person who shares what I have with someone else. The principle is “give and it shall be given”. Just don’t give expecting to get it back the same way. God gives back to you differently. Give with the right heart and not with wrong motives. Those of you who are “Mr. Scrooge” or “Ms, Mrs. Scrooge” re-evaluate your life and position. It’s not about you!!! How can you love your neighbor if you don’t love yourself?

Something to think about. Have a safe and great holiday season.

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Happy Fathers Day

Fathers Day is always played down because we always hear of those who have not been good Fathers and those who have skipped out on their family. But lets focus on the good.

Happy Fathers Day to all not only Fathers but to the Women who had to be the Father in the house for whatever the reason. Sometimes we overlook the fact that the Women have had the extra duty to be both Mother and Father in the home.

Those Fathers who have helped raise your children to the best of your ability, Thank You. All fathers should be an example to your children, so they don’t look outside the home for examplesbor heroes.  Be that light shining in darkness, not only to your own child or children but to those your children hang out with.

To the mothers who have been the father in the home as well as the mother, continue to do the best you can. There are lots of mentoring programs out there that help in giving the balance needed to make your job easier.

Be blessed and enjoy your day!!!

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Memorial Day

Memorial Day is always a moving and sometimes an emotional day for those of us who have loved ones who have either passed away that were war veterans or those who were killed in combat.

My dad was a World War 2 Veteran who passed away last year.  He served for 3 years on active duty during that time period.  I recently received all of his awards that were due to him from Washington, DC.  These awards were missing from his record.  So I am happy about that.

This day represents more than that. There are people who hate the military and those who serve and have fallen.  Why this is you may ask?  It could be for any number of reasons.  This is a day to pay tribute to those who have served, are currently serving, and have retired from every branch of service.  We have served with pride and a sense of value.

So say Thank You to a Soldier today whether in uniform, wearing a Retiree hat or if you know them personally.  They are serving to keep this Nation Free of the fear of terror strikes, so that we as a Nation don’t hear bombs going off over your head every 2-3 minutes like we are in a combat zone.

We are a blessed Nation not having to live in constant fear on a daily basis.  I’ve been to Iraq and being in full gear day after day is not a way to live.  So say Thank You to a Soldier today, this week, this month.

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Posted in Memorial Day

Administrative Assistants

How often are Administrative Assistants given a “Thank You” for all their efforts?  The answer would surprise you. Some bosses don’t acknowledge their assistant for what they do. Why you may ask would that happen?

Some don’t because they fear a sexual harrassment case may happen. Others don’t because they forget to with all the hussle and running to this and that meeting.

Some assistants are only acknowledged during the office birthdays. Others are acknowledged for their years of service. Most work hard and are like adhesive bandages, keeping the workplace in order and running smooth.

Some just want a simple thank you to let them know you care about them and what they do.  Thus the celebration week of “Administrative Assistants Week”. This is a week that the boss can acknowledge the admin assistant for a job well done, say thank you, or keep up the good work.

All of us need that from time to time, but those who are your right hand person whether male or female truly deserve it especially when they keep the boss out of hot water.  Don’t forget them.

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Time Management

Time management is a key factor in all of our lives. How we use it makes all the difference in the world.  Those of us who are business owners must utilize our time wisely. We must make sure those we put in charge have good time management skills also.

All to often we must be an overseer of that which is entrusted to us. Be the good stewart that God wants us to be.  Make the wise, sound decisions that a caring boss makes not only himself or herself but for those he/she has working for him/her.

Good time management doesn’t come easy at times, with all the meetings, conference calls and other things going on, some things can slip through the crack.  Playing catch up isn’t fun either. Extra effort is put forth to get back on track. 

A good manager must be organized and have a very good assistant that can make the necessary changes on the schedule so as not to leave out anything.

So many assistants aren’t appreciated for the work they do. The assistant not only keeps the office running, but makes sure the boss has little to no urgent issues overlooked during the course of the day.
Respect your boss, respect your assistant, respect your supervisor, respect your workers.

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Use Your Local Florist

Everyone who orders flowers, baskets, gifts for any occasion should consider ordering through their local florist. What people don’t realize is that the florist gets cheated out of the full cost of then  order received through an order taker.

Another point is that the $75 order you placed the florist filling that order may only get $30 of that sale.  So that premium or deluxe arrangement you ordered has been reduced down. Some order takers get your order incorrect, so be sure to check your order once your florist delivers it.

Make sure your local florist has a great rating for customer service. We all get a little on edge, but it is how we handle the mess up that will make the difference in the customer returning or finding another florist.  Some customers can push you to the limit, but again the florist has to be professional in the remedy.

Customers be kind to your florist, he or she works hard for their money. A long as the order wasn’t trashed, lost, or just plain pitiful, help us help you. Some florists average 5-10 orders a day, more on a holiday.

Have a great day and we will chat again.

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Easter or Resurrection Sunday

For those who don’t know Jesus Christ, he is a great person to get to know and love. I can attest to a lot of things he has done for me. It doesn’t take great faith to believe. I always use this example with teenagers. I have them close their eyes as I talk to them to let them know that just because you cannot see him he does exist.

For those of us who enjoy Resurrection Sunday, it is a time of rejoicing and praising God for his son Jesus. He died so that we may live.

I know there are times in a persons life when they feel that God doesn’t care. I am here to let you know that he does care. What choices have you made in your life that may have caused a certain outcome? Remember there are no “good people”. Not by our definition of good, for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.  I know I haven’t always been good.  We have to forgive as well as be forgiven of those things we have done.

God is a forgiving God, he is a loving God who never struck me down nor cast me aside.  He picked me up, brushed me off and sent me on my way. Just like a parent does a child.  Each of us has a journey and I am living mine to the fullest.

To God be the Glory forever and ever.

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