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Selling, Trading, and just bad businessmen

A good business sense, and an accurate perception of reality just are not all
that common, especially with LFS!  In general, they have to make a profit, or
they won't stay in business. Some, however, only stay in business because they
are "the only game in town." 

There really is no cure available to us!  People spend zillions of dollars on
Psychiatrists, but rarely change their basic personalities or even alter their
behaviors. If your LFS is a lousy businessman (or business woman, although in
my experience the female store owners are often GOOD business folks!) you
won't be able to change them. You may find a way around their bad business
sense, but don't be too disappointed if they won't cooperate. Sorry! :-(

Luckily, MOST LFS folks can figure out a good deal, and will give you a decent
return on your plants, fish, etc. However, be sure to KNOW what they are
paying their normal wholesaler for the same stuff! If they pay 10 cents per
for Val, they sure won't pay you 25. However, if they are paying 5 cents per
for Val, and shipping it from Florida, and want to pay you 3 cents, it really
helps to be able to say, "Well, heck. You are paying a nickel plus air
shipping from Florida, I expect you to pay me six cents each. Mine are tank
grown, and will stay healthy until you sell them. We both need to make a
decent margin. Just good business." 

If they carry stuff in stock that you use, offer to trade. Point out the fact
that you are not in competition with them, just hoping to do business WITH
them. If such an approach does not work, put an ad in the paper, go to the
local Fish Club meeting, etc. 

As a last resort, START a fish club. 


Jean Olson
JOlson8590 at AOL_com
Machinist, Live Steamer,
Model Engineer, Composer, Arranger, 
Big Band and Dixie Land Jazz Tuba and Plectrum Banjo player. 
All around goofy Old Geezer!
Anything that makes music, swims, grows under water, or goes whiz, pop, fizz,
boom, bang, whoosh, chuff, throws sparks, makes smoke or hurls itself aloft
holds my interest!

PS If you have had a good relationship with a former employee, and now the
"new guy" is being a jerk, have a quiet talk with the Owner. Don't get on the
new guy - you catch more flies with honey, etc. It is the OWNER who has the
fly swatter, not you!  Always point out the obvious - that they used to make a
good profit on the stuff you brought in, and they are now losing that profit.
One of the most successful businessmen in this area was famous for his TV ads,
which always ended with him saying, "No sale in Reichardts is ever final. I
know, because I am Bill Reichardt, and I OWN THE STORE."