After my store re-opened after being closed for two and a half months from California COVID shutdowns, I stayed home. My thoughts were that I had shown mastery during this shutdown and did not need to worry about stepping away. So I stepped pretty far away, not coming in any longer. My job was now purchasing.
Purchasing is something every store owner does, but it's part of a huge list of tasks. Purchasing went from maybe 10% of my job, something I did when I had time, to my sole job. I still manage finances and some marketing, but I am mostly a buyer.
What happens when a job that's 10% of your activities becomes nearly 100% of your job? It expands. Or at least it does if you're thinking about it a lot and like growth. You could certainly go home and half ass purchasing like before and spend your time on your Warhammer models. That's not me. Purchasing as a sole pursuit became pretty serious.
Purchasing as my sole job allowed me to open up to the full spectrum of what was available. I opened new distribution accounts, in fact I believe I have an account with every first and second tier distributor. With the segmentation of brands across distributors, it means I have a primary distributor, a secondary distributor, a new release Magic distributor, a restock Magic distributor, and several last resort, fill in the hole, distributors. I also opened many new direct accounts. Here's my list from the past few years:
- Creature Curation
- Darrington Press
- Foam Brain
- Hipp and Horn
- Indie Press Revolution (not new, but don't forget them!)
- Leder Games
- Monument Hobbies
- Penguin Random House