Your Money, Your Business: Twice Blessed Showroom Consignments
Editor's note: Your Money, Your Business showcases small businesses. If you have a small business or know of an interesting one, please let us know. See the end of this feature for submission information.
Twice Blessed Showroom Consignments
Address and phone number:
205 North Star Drive, Suite A, 361-574-9655
Outreach of First United Methodist Church
April 5, 2005
Number of employees:
60 volunteers and 13 board members
1: Why did you choose the industry?
We are a non-profit resale consignment shop, as an outreach of First United Methodist Church. A group of women saw a need for individuals who were downsizing and needed a place to sell their household items.
2: Describe your first day in business.
Our open house, with a blessing from our minister, was a "packed house." Our first days were somewhat slow, with a few nerves. But they were very exciting.
3: Describe a typical workday.
The showroom is run by volunteers who work two three-hour shifts, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Our ladies are very good at making everyone feel welcome. We take in consignments and donations, price the items, enter them into the computer, tag and arrange them. We dust, vacuum and rearrange to make room for more as we handle sales.
4: Why open up shop in the Crossroads region?
With the economy as it is, the need for this type of business is here. We felt resale was a way to help buyers, sellers, community charities and First United Methodist Church.
5: Is it difficult to find employees in our workforce? How do you find workers?
No, all are volunteers. It's just difficult to work around everyone's busy schedule. We have 14 board members - members of First United Methodist Church - and 60 volunteers from throughout the community, even Goliad County.
6: What advice would you give others starting a new business?
Research the market for what you plan to do. Ask "How many others are offering the same services?" Also take location and overhead into account.
7: What is the biggest challenge your industry faces?
The economy is a challenge. We are expanding and moving our location to a larger suite. We are "stepping out in faith" in the hope that we will continue to grow and that our showroom will remain filled with new and unusual items.
8: What is something most people don't realize about running a small business?
Meeting the payroll would be difficult, but we are only volunteers. Our difficulty lies in paying expenses and having money for charity. When we handle estate sales, the hours we spend on preparation are many.
9: In your time running your business, what is your best story?
We have many. All our volunteers are caring, Christian ladies who are good listeners and are always ready to help our customers in any way possible. We have people who ask for prayers, adults moving elderly parents to assisted living, adults giving up their homes and prized possessions to relocate to smaller living facilities. Sometimes there is a death and items are sold or donated to us in this way. People are happy to see their things going to others and with proceeds going to good causes.
10: Where do you see yourself and your business in five years?
I hope we continue to grow and give back to the church and community. We have only been open five years, but our business has grown each year. After we committed to tithe each month to the church, we have increased our sales. In 2009, we gave $30,090 to First United Methodist Church, the food bank, Mid-Coast Family Services, VCAM, Christ's Kitchen, Kids Connection and individuals in need.
- Allison Miles, Victoria Advocate
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