If there is one realization every single one of us has had, it’s undoubtedly this – fashion business management is totally different from fashion designing. When we start working, we dream of having our own label... of creating such charming collections that people flock to buy our designs.
As we start working towards these dreams, reality starts syncing in. We are no longer limited to creating designs. There are bills and salaries to pay, workshops and design studios to rent, customer complaints to be resolved and so much more. How we wish, there was a playbook with clearly defined steps for us to follow.
In real life, there are no playbooks. That, however, doesn’t mean fashion business management is rocket science. Yes, there are challenges. But someone before us has also faced these challenges and has found a solution. Or at least found a hack that can help us circumvent these challenges.
This isn’t a hack but a necessity. Any discussion about running a successful business cannot take place without clarity on what the business is about. If there is a single tip/hack/ recommendation we want to focus on in the field of fashion business management, it’s having a clear vision! There is no alternative to that. Are we an aspirational brand or do we want to redefine daily wear? A lot depends on our vision and hence, it must be given the utmost importance.
This is another clichéd advice in fashion business management, which holds true. Our designs define how our customers are perceived in the world. And for this basic reason, knowing our customers is critical. We may take the hyper-personalized route of haute-couture fashion or design a line for college students. Whatever be our philosophy, it needs to be absolutely clear who we are designing for!
This is a hack that most fashion entrepreneurs ignore. We are creative souls wanting to create unique designs. Why do we need to get into the boring stuff? Well, because they are our lifeline! Imagine creating a beautiful design only to realize that the colors you wanted are not available in the fabric you wanted. To bring our designs to fruition, we need to understand the constraints in our supply chain and have alternatives ready.
In fashion business management or life in general, this is a golden rule. Whether it is suppliers in our network or our customers or the craftsmen working for us – each and every one of them is important. And the better relationships we have with them, the better our chances of success. In times of crisis, it is these relationships that get us out of trouble.
Understanding and embracing technology is one of the greatest hacks of fashion business management. Using the multitude of tools available to marketing our products using AR and VR, there is no end to how technology can help us build a stronger and better business.
Our customers may forget our designs, but they will never forget how they felt with us. It is up to us what kind of experience we provide them with. Are we making them wait unnecessarily, arguing about the fits, and how we know better? Or, are we trying to understand their needs and making recommendations tailored to them? Fashion business management 101 — it must be the latter.
We may come up with the greatest designs, but will never have a single customer if people don’t know about us! Showcasing our work is as important as creating it. The world of social media has only made it easier for us to put our work out there.
This may not seem important for fashion business management, but is one of the most effective hacks for any business. Having a clean inbox means never missing another order or customer feedback. A little time invested every morning or evening is all that is needed.
This cannot be emphasized enough! We need to realize whether we are productive or simply busy. Cutting out unnecessary tasks from our daily routine can be the best hack. Focusing on the important tasks and taking quick decisions is what successful fashion business management looks like.
This may sound outrageous, but as an entrepreneur, this can be our savior. To delve into our creative selves and achieve our vision, we need to separate ourselves from the chaos. A little time off at the right interval can help us rejuvenate and return to our business – recharged and raring to go.