A frustrating part about running your own business is figuring out which agreements you should make and the people that are behind them. For example, in my business I was focusing on baby hats that would be used for professional portraits - that means that the hats weren't necessarily intended for everyday use but would make great one of a kind, memorable portraits. However, I've found that professional photographers aren't necessarily so 'professional' and so I've had a bit of a struggle with some 'mutual' agreements. For example, when selling a product, a fabulous photo can really help the sale and so a picture of a cute baby wearing my hat is usually a great way to bring in more sales - so how does this happen? Well sometimes we trade a few products with the photographer for some portraits. Except so far, I've given out 12 items and have only gotten back about 4 portraits. This is very frustrating.
One used the excuse that my products were too small - but trying to put a 3 month baby in a newborn hat isn't exactly fair. When I asked for my unused products back, she agreed but said she'd send me on invoice for the shipping. Others just simply haven't come through. In fact, back in September I asked one photographer to return the unpaid for items especially since we were coming up to Christmas - the busiest time of year for a small craft seller - each week they fail to be returned, followed by an apology and a reason why the delivery couldn't be made and then another promise with a new delivery date.
I know this happens for lots of people, with advertising or joint marketing, or other parts related to business. For me, I have learned from this experience, and fortunately haven't lost too much money - even though every penny counts where you're starting out. It's not an easy job, but I'm still willing to keep trying.