PROFITABLY UNPROFITABLE

I see this every day here in Mexico, people making things, and selling them dirt cheap, never calculating what it took to make it in the first place, leaving them unprofitable!
Let me break it down…
We shall use a padded chair for an example.
To make your chair you need:
Wood (Delivery costs if you don’t have a truck), nails, wood glue, stain, paint thinner, lacquer, foam, fabric (For seat part), tools (Lots of expensive ones), your precious labor time, and don’t forget your electricity bill, that will be hefty if you are constantly using power tools such as tables saws and drills. Lastly your rent, unless you make things from home that is.
Now that you have calculated all that went into making your beautiful chair, that you just completed, you have to decide how much you want for it.
Let us say, that the chair cost was a grand total of $300.00 dollars.
‘COST YOU’ $300.00 dollars, RIGHT?
So you ‘CAN NOT’ charge that amount!
You have to add what you think your labor is worth, you have to get back what you paid for the chair to be built, and you have to charge another $300.00 dollars to actually get a PROFIT!
This is the breakdown…
$300. Chair building cost, $300. Labor with break down of $150. per day to make chair, $300. Your price will be $900. dollars, this you will charge your customer for the chair. 
Your profit, $600.00 dollars, the other $300. will be used to invest in building another product. Not to mention, if it becomes necessary to hire a person to help you, for which they also receive a slice of the profit.
This brings me to why I brought this up, I live in Mexico for half the year and in the U.S. the other half. Honestly people here, ‘sadly’, know nothing about their worth.
These people are amazingly talented, and creative to the extreme, taking objects from the trash and converting it to treasures, also making and selling things from natural resources, such as tree trunks, clay, seashells, palm leaves, cocconut husks, sharks teeth, bamboo, seaglass, and ordinary rocks.
They also make beautiful crochet items, sewn dresses, and tops embroidered by hand, spectacular paintings of Mexican women being carried by Indian men dressed in an array of colorful feathers, wooden table and chair sets with intricately designed carved accents, handcrafted statues, crosses with a glazed porcelain Jesus look a likes hanging onto the carved deep cedar colored wood.
This is only a small portion of this incredibly cultured land of Mexico that offers everything dirt cheap including their silver, onyx, opals, and pearls.
The problem, PESOS and STINGY PEOPLE! 
Pesos are worthless if you are living on them, 😦 SAD FACE HERE!
If you use Dollars you never think about prices, because it is majorly cheap, on the other hand, using pesos when you get paid lousy pay every 15 days, is a killer.
Example: The average waiter gets a daily pay of $70 pesos which is $6 dollars A DAY! Can you feed your family on that? I don’t think so! If you have a better job you can make anywhere between $86-$230 which in dollars is about the wage you would get working at McDonalds.
My point here is, people here try to sell their own things, because working for someone else is in no way going to secure a grand future. The horrible thing is, these people go out selling their things too cheap, leaving them in the exact same position as working for a boss.
According to a recent study by INEGI 27.4% of the total population sell in the streets to be able to eat, which equals out to be around 11.9 million.
Tourists are the only one’s who don’t really haggle, yet they can’t complain due to the ridiculously low prices. The people who live here are the problem. They don’t care how much money it took you to make your product or about the labor. 
So these people wander the streets all day with their homemade items on their backs going street through street, house to house, business to business, trying to sell just one thing only to get people that haggle them down below the price that it took them to make it!
This outrages me! 
NO ONE VALUES HARD WORK!

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2 comments on “PROFITABLY UNPROFITABLE

  1. Jacqueline – Exploitation among craftsman and artisians is common world wide. With the Christmas season rapidly approaching, we’ll see more and more of the haggling of prices at quality craft fairs where local artists sell their work and never receive the amount the work is actually worth. I’ve travelled the world in my career and collecting art has always been a favorite extravagance (one I can no longer afford because I believe in paying the artist the value of what I purchase). My husband is a custom jewelry designer working in precious gems/gold and sometimes silver. His works are one of a kind and it never ceases to amaze me that people want and expect one of a kind artisian designs yet never want to pay for that process. I’m not sure what the answer is for craftsman in Mexico or artisian world wide but I do know that something has to change or we are going to lose some of our most valuable resources.

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