Also, I see the business growing in the types of things that we have (for sale). The Green Giraffe will grow and branch out.
What have you learned form your work?
I’ve learned a lot of good life lessons. I’ve met a lot of people and everybody and everything has got a story. I’ve learned that being courteous and understanding and fair will get you far. The customer has a dilemma and you want to help them as much as you can. Browsing in my shop is good therapy!
I had a little girl come in with her grandmother, and when she saw a rotary telephone, she asked her grandmother, “How do you use this?” There’s great history to be learned from the old stuff.
It’s nice to be able to introduce the young people to other technology (from the past). I can see they appreciate it.
I’m not going to be a millionaire in this business, but I love doing what I do. I’ve made a tremendous number of friends of all ages.
What is the most challenging part of what you do?
The most challenging part is the amount of inventory that we get. It’s hard to juggle it. It’s a constant flow. Also, it is challenging to figure out with to do with stuff we don’t sell. We donate it, but we have to decide who will benefit most from the donation. I don’t believe in putting stuff in the landfill. We don’t call it junk; we call it stuff. Everything has a purpose. We are a stuff society. I love stuff! Also, it’s long hours — six days a week, easily.
How do you define success for your business?
People like me — it’s word of mouth. If I have a bad reputation, it doesn’t do anything for my business. People compliment me on my shop. Today I’m still here after two-and-a-half years. That’s success to me.