Monday, April 02, 2012

Catching Up...

Yesterday was a "non-starter, comic-book guy" day for me. I woke up and my spine was everything but straight. Yes, I was in pain. A fair chunk of it. Now, before folks go off asking what's wrong, it's simple. I have three bulging discs in my lower back. Nothing has ruptured yet, and from what I've been told as long as I am nice to my back, I should be good to go. However, due to the condition of the spine, every now and then it announces that it hates me. Yesterday was one of those days, hence, no sweater vest/necktie combination. I was in too much pain to put in that much effort to get ready. Today, it's all better.
'Twas another "day off" today. Went in... placed a few orders... had lunch with the Loquacious one... went back and placed a few more orders... Talked over a few things with HiSign and BigBank... and then left. Tonight's agenda is still up in the air, though.

Loq and I might travel to another store about 30-35 east of here and see what's up with them. We know the guys who run it and are on friendly terms with them. They recently moved out of their old spot and upgraded to a shiny, new place of business. Loq and I have been promising to come over and say "hello" for a bit now, and tonight might be the night.

Depending on time issues, and if they are even open, we might hit another store about an hour south of us. The owners have been in asking questions about how to run a store, and we've been giving information out freely. It's kind of nice when folks ask you for advice, especially when you yourself do not feel like you know what you are doing. That's me though, even if I espouse confidence on the outside, I NEVER feel like I know what I am doing, even when it's something I've been doing well for YEARS. It's just how I'm wired...

Tomorrow looks to be a big day. One shipment is due to arrive from our main distributor. The new paint rack for Games Workshop arrives tomorrow, but the paints themselves are not showing up until Wednesday or Thursday. We also have a chunk of new shelving, brackets, and hooks showing up. The physical revamp of the sales floor is almost complete. There are a few more items to get, and then we should be good. Once thatis set up, it's time to revamp the office/storage area. HiSign wants to turn it into an office for me to go hide and do managerial type stuff. I'm not entirely certain that can happen, but I'm willing to let him try.

Anyhoo... things aren't going to do themselves, so I'd best get to it.

-- GopherDave


  1. Im going to have to stop by and check out the "sales floor" when im town this weekend.

    1. Love to see you, sir!

      I'll be at the store the bulk of Saturday morning/afternoon, and Sunday evening after 6PM or so. Oh, and all day Friday...

  2. That's cool that you're on good terms with other area owners. How do you manage relations with competition? Are there stores closer to yours and do you get along with them as well, or do you "stay on your side of the fence?"

  3. In general, we are on relatively good terms with pretty much every game store owner in the region save the one that is three miles across town from us...

    Him... well, let's just say that things are antagonistic from his end and as indifferent as we are capable of being, given that, on our end.

    I like the guy. I do. When he's in a good mood, he can be fun. His store was my FLGS for the first three years he was open. Then "store owner indifference" set in with him, and his customer service abilities hit the toilet. He was the "only game in town, where else are you gonna buy from", and as such, a sort of antagonistic indifference began to creep into his manner.

    Other stores in the area opened up in response to this, but gamers being gamers and not businessmen, most of those fizzled within two years of opening in the face of more established competition. Hell, the store we own now was facing that itself due to a number of bizzare cirucumstances at the time Loq and I purchased it.

    How did we make it work?

    Simple... I knew what upset me about the other store and tried to avoid those things like the plague. Just by doing that, we stayed afloat long enough to figure out some semblance of what we were doing. Loq, I, and the community of Gophers around the store built from there.

    We're doing okay...

    1. That sounds eerily familiar :). We have a GW in the south end of the city and a couple of comic stores that sell games, but only one other dedicated game store.
      Its owner has a lot of the same problems.He's got a ton of old product for lines that don't sell and doesn't bring in much of what does sell (e.g. Warmahordes). His tables are rudimentary, his terrain is beat up, and I've never seen him do anything to fix or build new stuff. Most of the time when I go in he's playing a computer game. Some guys still play there because it is the only place to play other than the GW, but I know there are many who don't. That's why I hope to open a store in the next few years that can be a game community hub like the one it looks like you've built. I'm impressed with the loyalty of the customer base you've built and was surprised to read that you've been in business less than four years. Like you, I'll be doing much of what the other guy doesn't.