Am I overextended?

How do I know if I’m overextended? For me, it’s when I make too many dumb mistakes.

Yesterday for instance, I managed to drop off the wrong order to a customer. Then today I switched some items on an invoice and had to stop by a second time to give them the corrected version.

Last week, I managed to produce a whole batch of lip gloss with the wrong colour forcing me to throw it all away.

Discarded lip gloss
That’s not the watermelon lip gloss colour!

All of these mistakes cost me valuable time and sometimes money – both of which I am very short of lately. My challenge is that every time I look up to be more strategic, I tend to make more of these mistakes as the maker, account manager and admin person combined.

Forced refocus

I’m about to get a tiny break though – well, sort of. I have a supply bottleneck right now with the pumps for my aluminium bottles. Thanks to Covid, they won’t be restocked until late August/early September. This means that I have to actually slow down my new sales activities to ensure that I don’t run out of stock for existing Harvestcare clients.

So, for the month of August, I’ve decided to refocus on my recycled plastic work where there is no shortage of free, local materials. These products cost me so little to make (except for time) in comparison to the Harvestcare line. And therefore, if I can perfect the technique so that I can do things faster and more consistently, it can help from a cashflow point of view too.

Stretched across two product lines

With my making and sales activities ramping up for the recycled plastics products under The Refoundry logo now, I’m completely overextended at the moment as neither are at a business as usual state yet.

I’ve also just started doing interviews again for my podcast which has taken a break for the last month due to difficulties in scheduling guests during the end of the financial year. While that particular work does run fairly well now, it still takes about 8 hours of my time per episode (down from about 20 hours).

I’m afraid that something like the podcast might have to give soon. While my work capacity is far above most people, even I am struggling right now. And honestly, I just don’t have the time or money to make all of these dumb mistakes because I am overextended.

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Tammy Ven Dange

IT Consultant for the Not for Profit Sector | Host of "Executive with a Cause" Podcast

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