Benjamin Franklin really said, “Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff it is made of.”
Yep – I changed up the quote to make a point. How you manage your time impacts the number of sales your shop receives.
Ben’s Value of Time
“What is the price of that book?” at length asked a man who had been dawdling for an hour in the front store of Benjamin Franklin’s newspaper establishment. “One dollar,” replied the clerk. “One dollar,” echoed the lounger; “can’t you take less than that?” “One dollar is the price,” was the answer.
The would-be purchaser looked over the books on sale a while longer, and then inquired: “Is Mr. Franklin in?” “Yes,” said the clerk, “he is very busy in the press-room.” “Well, I want to see him,” persisted the man. The proprietor was called, and the stranger asked: “What is the lowest, Mr. Franklin, that you can take for that book?” “One dollar and a quarter,” was the prompt rejoinder. “One dollar and a quarter! Why, your clerk asked me only a dollar just now.” “True,” said Franklin, “and I could have better afforded to take a dollar than to leave my work.”
The man seemed surprised; but, wishing to end a parley of his own seeking, he demanded: “Well, come now, tell me your lowest price for this book.” “One dollar and a half,” replied Franklin. “A dollar and a half! Why, you offered it yourself for a dollar and a quarter.” “Yes,” said Franklin coolly, “and I could better have taken that price then than a dollar and a half now.”
The man silently laid the money on the counter, took his book, and left the store, having received a salutary lesson from a master in the art of transmuting time, at will, into either wealth or wisdom.
(Excerpt from the public domain work of Orisen Swett Marden’s Pushing to The Front)
You Are Like Ben Franklin
I enjoy the life story of Benjamin Franklin. In this story, he owned his own business (think newspaper, printing, and bookstore all rolled into one).
He was a small business owner. He was practical. He was smart. He worked hard. He was serious about his business. He faced challenges, but looked for ways to overcome them. He is like you and like me in this sense – only a little more famous . . . and dead – but you get the point. He was an entrepreneur for sure!
You’ve Only Got So Many Working Hours
If Etsy is your side gig, you are probably really tired by the time you can work on your business. You’ve got lots of demands on your remaining time. When you put in that hour of work – you can’t afford to waste it.
If Etsy is part of your full-time gig, your hour is even more valuable, because it’s part of your grocery bill and mortgage payment that needs to be paid. As a full-time entrepreneur, there is not a week that goes by that I don’t keep tweaking my time management skills to reach my full potential.
Transmuting or Transforming Time
Marden closes the above selection by saying, “transmuting time, at will, into either wealth or wisdom.”
Older book . . . older language. At least I don’t use the word “transmuting” every day, but it means to transform.
As small business owners, we must transform time into what we want it to be. Benjamin Franklin is known for his focus on wisdom and wealth and thus transform times into those commodities.
If you are an Etsy seller, start thinking about how you are transforming your hours into more Etsy sales.
Looking At An Hour For Sale Potential
This article will be finished in exactly one hour of time (I’m at the 45 minute of working time right now). How does this hour convert into a sale for myself, Jason Malinak of Etsy-preneurship.
Lesson 1 – I sometimes set a time limit to my work. I was only going to spend 1 hour writing this article – even though I could have spent twice as long. An hour was enough to create the product I needed to. Sufficiency vs. perfection. Find the right balance.
Lesson 2 – I had a goal for this hour. Write an article that was between 500 and 1000 words long. Create the cover image – that is also the optimal size for Facebook link posts (700 wide x 366 tall). Have the word file saved in my blog article folder ready to post when it is needed. Writing blog posts ahead of time helps free my time in the future for other projects and infrastructure building.
Lesson 3 – At the end of this hour, I had an expectation of the results I would achieve. This is related to the “sales” part of the quote. I write articles to help your Etsy shop thrive and also generate my own sales. Each time you read one of my articles, we are growing in our relationship together. We are building trust. In business, trust always leads to good things, including sales. This post will gain me new likes on Facebook. Google will drive traffic to my blog. Some will sign up on my email list. You might consider joining my monthly membership site, Thrive. Or make a purchase in my Etsy shop, JJMFinance. Or purchase my Etsy-preneurship book on Amazon.
And The Conclusion, Because My Timer Shows 3 Minutes Left
Every hour can be transformed into a sale or something good for your business. Marden’s first words after telling our introductory story were,
“Time wasters are everywhere”.
I agree. Consider giving yourself a time limit to accomplish a goal, while considering your expectations of results.
DING! (My hour is up).