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SUCCESSES AND MISTAKES AT LABIENHECHA (PART I)


Today, we want to go over all those successes and mistakes that, in our opinion, we’ve made in different ways. It would be probably an endless list, but today we want to focus in a first part that summarize 8 key successes and 8 mistakes that have led us to what we are today. If sharing this part of our experience can be useful or make you to know us better, be my guest!

ACIERTOS Y ERRORES DE LABIENHECHA (PARTE I)

by Irene Hernández

April 06, 2020


In the last post, we’ve talked about all the difficulties that we’ve found and still do it along our course with Labienhecha. Today, we want to go over all those successes and mistakes that, in our opinion, we’ve made in different ways.

It would be probably an endless list, but today we want to focus in a first part that summarize 8 key successes and 8 mistakes that have led us to what we are today:

MISTAKES:

1. Neither to plan nor having clear aims.

Labienhecha goes very fast, so fast that sometimes we have no time to establish aims or schedule the work. We often feel that we go behind it, solving problems on the move. And sometimes, when we seem to take a beat, a new complication appears. This implies a disorganization and deceleration that is no friend of any project.

The ideal picture is to plan and have clear aims, as well as to save time in daily time to solve problems or unexpected events.

2. Lack of conviction or trust in what we do.

Many factors can influence that, but many times is necessary to stop and think what is causing it and change it. It’s almost a matter of shame: going out, discovering the feedback of something in that you’ve spent so much time and sacrifice.

Maybe uncertainty is also a source of the lack of trust, but we have to say that we’ve learned something: is we don’t believe in our project, nobody else will do it.

3. The drama of problems.

If we stop to think how many times we’ve used an unnecessary energy in problems that doesn’t imply the end of the world, that have an easy solution… How much annoyance we’d have saved ourselves!

We think that it’s important to see the whole picture, see the wood instead of focusing on the tree. Without a doubt, learning to make a difference and appreciate by giving importance to really important things is something that can be an advantage. We’re learning to do it well… :)

4. «Go grocery shopping while hungry», as we use to say...

Utilizamos esta expresión porque se parece mucho al problema que sufre el artesano, y es que tienes que comer, que pagar facturas, que continuar sacando adelante tu proyecto, y todo ello hace que a veces, por el hecho de vender, tendemos a vender un producto por menos de lo que vale. Malvenderse, bajar los precios y no negociarlos inteligentemente no lleva a ningún lado. Al menos, no a vivir de la venta de un producto que tanto esfuerzo y empeño (y dinero) conlleva.

5. Comparisons.

We all know that they’re odious, but in this case, we also believe that they don’t lead anywhere: each project is different and has its own needs and ins and outs. What it works for your neighbor doesn’t have to work for you and the other way around.

Without a doubt, let us to be advised and know the experience and course of the rest is enriching, but basing decisions on comparison or drawing conclusion from them will hardly lead to something positive.

6. Fear (or panic!) of mistakes.

We have to assume that we can’t be perfect or make things perfect. After all, mistakes are one of the most valuable tools for a project, because learning from them is one of the most enriching things both personally and professionally.

7. Lack of communication.

A right communication is necessary, even more in teams like us in which there is a production chain, a purchase and sell process, an office, a physical store, an umpteen markets and a workshop that should work elbow to elbow. It may seem something simple, but take something for granted in a team can unleash a lot of different mistakes.

8. Ignoring our instinct.

As we said before, we have to trust our project and ourselves. Maybe this point make us look a little bit crazy… but we’ve checked it: if we need to make any decision in which the rational part seems to indicate that is a good idea but there’s still something, a certain something, that tell us the opposite… We’ve learned that we need to tip the balance again, because ignoring our instinct have played some dirty tricks on us.

 

SUCCESSES:

1. Going out.

Showing our face, showing the product, loosing the shame, telling our story. We’re still learning, but this has been one of the biggest successes of Labienhecha, because there are a work and a team behind it, and going out to share all of this, creates a trust bond with everyone who know you.

In the end, it also makes them to wish to be part of it somehow (even if it’s by buying one bag, or five <3).

2. Taking a risk.

Or as we use to say, going to bingo with the last bill. It’s said that nothing ventured, nothing gained, and we’ve lost sometimes, but we’ve also gained a lot by taking a risk, by betting on people, suppliers, events or any crazy idea… like opening a store in the city center of Málaga!

3. Reinvesting.

It’s not important for us to hit the jackpot, but to grow our project. Reinvesting the money earned by Labienhecha (instead of traveling... that we wouldn’t mind to do it), has allow us to keep moving forward and make the project to keep growing.  

4. Trusting ourselves and trusting Labienhecha.

It may seem a little bit contradictory because we pointed it as a mistake, but against the mistake of no trusting… We’ve learned to take off the shame and the fear, we’ve trusted and we keep doing in, we don’t give up before difficulties, which are not few.

We’ve faced situations in which we’ve not been trusted (and even some laugh specially because we’re all women…), but we also need to believe in ourselves and the satisfaction of having the support of an amazing team and of those around us.

5. Integrity, transparency, closeness.

Being accessible to everybody is one of our values and it allows us to create trusted long-lasting relationships. Labienhecha doesn’t hide; Labienhecha shares.  

6. Creating synergies, allies and community.

We don’t like the concept of rivalry, we think that we can help each other and we share knowledge, materials, techniques and strategies with other artisans, entrepreneurs, suppliers and customers. We believe that the sense of community is important for a project to work.

7. Never giving up.

Despite falling exhausted everyday for the huge amount of work that this implies, we never give up. We fight everyday for what we believe and even if sometimes it can be frustrating, the feeling of satisfaction that we experience when getting over difficulties, when looking at the family we’ve created or the development that still has our project, is much bigger.

8. Our biggest success: the team.

We’ve been able to create a women team in which we support one to each other. Labienhecha doesn’t have a team in which each one of us makes her thing and that’s all.

There’s a big family in which all of us gives more than 100%, and not because we demand it, but because we feel it this way, because we identify ourselves with the values of the project, because we like helping one to each other and we look at each other proud of everything we’ve made and everything we still have to achieve.

We are a bienhecha women family, we’re all different but we’re together. At Labienhecha we’ve learned the meaning of the word sorority in our daily life, every hour and every minute.

We’re workmates, friends and almost like sisters. Having a great human team is one of the most gratifying things you can get in a project.

We’ll probably never stop to be inexperienced in thousand things… But if sharing this part of our experience can be useful or make you to know us better, be my guest!

If there’s any entrepreneur in the room who want to share his or her experience, we’re all ears! And if everyone needs support or have any doubt, we remember you that we’re here, at the other side, to help you in what we can ;)

Meanwhile, we hope our learning can be useful for you and a reminder for us to apply it every day.

One more day is one day less. We’ll all be outside very soon!

Cheer up and lots of hugs from #lasbienhechas.

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