Monthly Archives: July 2014

A Semi (Truck) Selfie…

We waited most of yesterday for a 18-wheeler full of shipping boxes to roll into the PJP Buttonwood parking lot and sadly, it never happened before we closed at 5:30.  We were a little righteously indignant this morning with expectations for boxes clouding all our judgment.  But around 9 am, we had a knock at the door and we both said right away, “BOXES”.  And here was what was waiting in the back alley for us…

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One of the guys was dismayed by the lack of a dock and asked in earnest about the availability of a forklift…and then he looked around at our space and looked at the two of us and realized a forklift seriously wasn’t going to happen either.  But the need for a dock or a forklift piqued my interest and I really couldn’t wait to see the back door of the truck slide open…

 

 

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Honestly…a bit anti-climatic.  I don’t know what I expected, but I guess a truck filled to capacity with our new shipping boxes.  For all the work that had gone into developing the boxes and having them custom cut just for PJP, one shrink-wrapped pallet seemed to belittle the work of this project.  And while I was thinking “hey, that’s all?”, the delivery guys were thinking “hey, this is a lot of boxes and we have to manually unload them because these people don’t even have a forklift.”

And let’s just talk about these guys for a minute.  I don’t know their names, nor do I know the company they work for (or maybe they own it), but here is the truth…they unwrapped the pallet and carried all the bundles of boxes into PJP for us simply because they are super nice.  They could have chucked our pallet into the alley, jumped back in the cab of the truck, and rolled on out.  But they didn’t and WE SO APPRECIATE IT.

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And after all of the boxes were kindly stacked inside our doors, Jeanne offered a proposal.  In exchange for a baby pie, could we perhaps climb up in the cab of the semi-truck and take a ridiculous amount of selfies and blow the horn?  And thankfully for us, free pie is an excellent motivator because the head guy basically said we could just drive off with the truck in exchange for a free nine-inch pie.

And so really this is just a long story about how Jeanne and I both crossed off a Bucket List item…sit in the cab of a semi-truck.  And after 20 selfies and a lot of “hey, what does this button do?” questions, the truck owner pointed me to the cord for the horn and I didn’t hesitate to pull on it for longer than likely socially acceptable, announcing the PJP arrival to the neighborhood.  (Or perhaps some slight retribution for the seven hour a day hammering next door in the construction zone.  Ahem.)  And then a post-horn-blowing selfie:

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We said our goodbyes and headed back in to our boxes.  And for all the worry we had about where to store them, we quickly found a home that promises to work well (as long as we don’t have any seismic events).

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So, if you are in the market to ship some pies…we have the boxes.  And the pies.

Harry.

So, late last night, I uttered the words that Behind-The-Scenes-Tech-Guru Jason has waited 20 solid years to finally hear from my lips…

Me:  I think I want to analyze daily Square sales information and to learn how to graph data points to establish trends in our weekly and monthly sales.

Jason:

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Behind-The-Scenes-Tech Guru Jason is still recovering from my announcement a full 24 hours later.  And trust me that the quickest way to blow the mind of someone who has seen you at your best and at your worst over 20 years is to whip out an iPhone calculator and start talking about margins.

And look, here is the blog-worthy truth…I do not care for numbers and data.  I’m an intuition sort of girl.  I’m pretty good at discerning how I feel about something or someone and accepting it for my reality.  Except I’m learning that using my intuition as a PJP owner gets really hard when our livelihood and future success depends on our daily sales and planning for our long-term upward growth in our retail location. (It turns out my intuition likes to spend money and pout when sales tax due dates and rent due dates coincide.)

So in a fit of pure not-me-at-all, I dove headfirst yesterday into all the financial reports that Square provides us about our sales.  And when I finished, I was definitely a different person than before I started.  I was a person with all the information.  As I said to one of my most trusted advisors, having all the information makes me feel like a big hairy monster is standing behind me and breathing on my neck.  (As a total aside, I sort of picture said monster as the monster from “Harry and The Hendersons”…not a scary monster, just there nonetheless)…

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I even reached the point in the data to figure out what we need to sell for each of our remaining six business days in July to increase our July sales over June by 10%.  And once you figure that information out, it takes owning your own business from “squeal, this is so cute!” to “OMG…the rent is due the day after our sales tax is due?” and that, my friends, is a hardcore business lesson.  I bet Mizzou calls me to teach in their MBA program immediately after this post hits the Internet.  Or not.

 

 

Ship Some Pies. Now.

We mentioned on Facebook earlier today that 1,000 pie shipping boxes are currently making their way to PJP Buttonwood and are slated for delivery tomorrow afternoon.  I’m not entirely certain that I’ve ever ordered 1,000 of anything…and certainly not anything that comes packed on a pallet and arrives on a truck with 18 wheels.  And I’m sorry to tell you that earlier this afternoon, I wished there were an app or a website that allowed me to track my truck’s progress to Columbia.  And so look, if you are inclined, I think TrackMyTruck could totally be a thing…because I can’t be the only person waiting for a semi-truck shipment of goods that is so excited for it to get here that I care what mile marker the truck is passing.  Right?  Right.

You might be wondering where the 1,000 boxes are going to go in PJP Buttonwood.  And that is something we are wondering about as well.  While we are big on ideas, we are short on space and so for right now, our answer to the location problem is:  uhhhh…we don’t know.  I bet the semi-truck driver guy is going to LOVE IT when we tell him we don’t know where to put the boxes.

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And while I’m sort of ruminating about it all, how exactly do they get the pallet of boxes from the truck to the store?  Is this some sort of Shipping Wars thing where I should know that I need a forklift to make this happen?

And while I’ve been fairly distracted with my boxes (clearly), Behind-The-Scenes-Tech-Guru Jason has managed to build the e-Commerce portion of our website in less than an hour.  I wasn’t even psychologically prepared for him to say “oh, it is live now” because in my mind, building a site that would allow people to order pies for shipment would take oh, I don’t know, DAYS.  Rather, he just needed about 45 minutes and suddenly, we are a company that ships.  I KNOW, RIGHT?

After the work that has gone into developing our product for shipping, I felt as if a fully functioning e-Commerce website should come with trumpets heralding our newest functionality.  Instead, it was really just me in our living room like this to Behind-The-Scenes-Tech-Guru Jason…

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So that is the scoop…we ship pies now.  We plan to ship once a week (on Wednesdays), provided the semi-truck of boxes fits in our parking lot tomorrow.  Order for yourself, for your friends, for your business peeps, for those whom you only marginally like, for people you haven’t thought of in years, for people you love, for people you used to love, for people you could have loved, for your best friend, for pie fans, for cupcake fans who should be pie fans, for anyone, anywhere.

http://pjpies.com/order-pies/