1) Etsy is the main selling channel for This Charming Candy, as you probably have noticed ;-) A large chunk of Etsy's original vision and mission is about enabling micro-businesses where the shop owner is the maker of the products that are for sale. Some of Etsy's growing pains deal with what they call having "production assistance".
Can Etsy Go Pro Without Losing Its Soul?
"While the site wants to remain an accessible entry point for newbies, it doesn’t want the narrative arc for successful sellers to arrive at the inevitable plot point: “And then I started a real business.”"and
"A seller designing objects that others build is not an Etsy aberration—it’s a crucial part of Etsy’s envisioned future."This Charming Candy currently has an Etsy-legal, properly disclosed, and I might add thoroughly kick-ass kitchen assistant. You can read a little blurb about her on the shop's About page.
2) A friend posted a pointer to an article about the importance of knowing under which conditions you might want to to say "no" to a customer's request for your business.
The Power of No
"It’s easy to feel like we need every single customer – but we don’t. We just need the right ones."That article was written with product-based businesses in mind, but I think the principles apply to any company that cares about its brand. It reminded me of a similar post from about a year earlier, published by my friends at the
Dr. No: Embracing the most important word in business
"When you are truly hungry as a business owner, it can be tempting to see all food as nourishing. That project you would have turned down in the good ol’ days, suddenly looks pretty good. “Just this one time,” is what you tell yourself. But then another customer comes to you with a very similar request, inspired by the great work you did on that other project, and so you say “yes” again. Things start to feel a little better with a steady flow of work, and the money is coming in. But one day you wake up and realize that you aren’t doing the type of work that you really want to be doing, and you wonder how you got in this predicament. No amount of messaging can turn around perceptions, for your body of work has defined you."
Lots of food for thought.