Happy 7th Birthday To Scandi Mini
Scandi Mini is SEVEN. 7 Years of trading and almost a year of preparatory work (while I was still working 4 days a week at the consumer insight brand agency I was working at before) so in a way, we are almost 8 today ;).
It didn’t start out that well to be honest. I started Scandi Mini with a Swedish friend of mine but after 4 months she wanted to leave. That was hard! But I guess it made me even more determined to succeed and turn Scandi Mini into a success.
Since then, we’ve been growing, adding brands, adding members of the team and little by little we’ve become a real business which now employs 6 people, sometimes 7 at busy times. It’s been really amazing to follow the journey we’ve been, but it hasn’t always been an easy ride, that’s for sure. So before I say anything else, I want to say thank you SO much to the amazing Scandi Mini team who work so very hard; day in and day out. With the website, your orders and the shop; Monica, Sandy, Megan, Tina and Luis. You are all FAB and amazing and I could not do this without you!!
If you’ve followed us on our journey on Instagram or through our blog you know that last year was the year when we finally launched our new website after a few false start in 2016. It can unfortunately be summed up as a bit of a disaster! The functionality which was meant to be great was pretty awful and we struggled for months to even get basic things like our payment system to work without crashing time and time again. We’ve spent days, nights and SO much money trying to fix it all. I guess the system we use or at least the version of Magento 2 we have is flawed. The agency that built it didn’t have enough knowledge of it either which didn’t help, and that meant we kept launching versions of our new website which then failed when they went live (it always worked perfectly at the testing stage).
Although the website is much much better now and is mostly a smooth ride for everyone involved including our customers; we still struggle sometimes with products disappearing, products which have long been out of stock that come back in to stock again (though we still are sold out of said product!!), and so on and so forth. We’re not a big company with lots of excess cash so we have to fix everything little by little, doing what we can afford at the time, mostly focussing on the most pressing issues. I am positive that in a few months everything will be 100% smooth again, it is already most of the time.
I am not going to lie and say that this experience with the new website last year hasn’t affected us or me personally as well. By the end of last year I actually thought I wanted to quit it all and do something else.
I just didn’t enjoy always fighting fires anymore and I had to ask myself over and over, why do I enjoy this and how can I continue with Scandi Mini without feeling stuck in a rut that I just don’t enjoy? For a while I was sure I wanted to quit but I kept coming back to how much I love fashion, and especially sustainable fashion; buying, styling, connecting with our customers and running the social media and well, I just realised I still love Scandi Mini to the point where quitting is not an option.
So I had a rethink, a bit of a restructure and I can finally say I am honestly really excited about Scandi Mini and our future now.
I have also made myself a set of new rules that facilitate having a busy job that I love. Maybe some of them can be applied to your life/job too, if you’re lucky enough to be able to be flexible with your set up?
Work very hard but ensure you can fit things in for yourself too, like a proper lunch break, a call to a friend, a walk or exercise. I am very guilty of not sticking to any of these rules before, I usually never had a lunch break, and I completely stopped exercising 18 months ago when it all got a bit too much for me to manage! Since a month back I have started exercising again (mornings and evenings!) and I am determined to stick with it now. It is all about realising that if you don’t look after yourself, everything else will fall apart.
If you can afford to employ people, surround yourself with people who are better at what they do than you would be in a similar role. I am lucky to have 6 people with both similar skills to me in many ways but that are also better at something than I am. It really makes a huge difference to Scandi Mini and the quality of work we provide!
Everyone has to do boring things that they don’t enjoy as part of their job. For quite a while I was stuck in an admin role where I mainly managed things like the launching of the new website, the running of the website and all its launches and how we should deal with customer service etc. It is a necessary job for me as the owner of Scandi Mini but I need the creative bits as that is what makes me tick so now I ensure I do creative things 2 days a week at least. I know I am very lucky to have this choice.
Over the next couple of months we will change quite a few things at Scandi Mini and we are also on the lookout for a new office. We’ve reduced the number of children’s fashion brands and added more women’s wear for Autumn ’18. We will also host more events and generally try and stay more connected to you our lovely customers. Keep a look out for more information regarding this all soon, and in the meantime: Thank you! For your support & your purchases and for sticking with us during tough times. 2018 is our year! Here is to 7 Lucky Years and many more to come!
Gabrielle & The Scandi Mini Team