On math & meetings

Hello. My name is Karen, and by the way, have I told you yet how much I suck at math?

It’s true. It’s as if every single time I try to wrap my brain around margins, percents, etc, I can literally feel my brain slowing down to a grinding halt, resisting focus with all of its might. The sad thing is that this is not a genetic flaw.

My father has been my business adviser since 2009 when I entered into the wholesale business. A math/business/numbers guy through & through, Joel has been the patient yet persistent driving force behind keeping babycakes moving in the right direction toward the holy grail of profitability. Not an easy task, especially when he has me for a daughter.

This is what used to happen about a year ago during our meetings:

“Karen, as you can see from this spreadsheet (lalalalala…cake doodle), the percent difference between (milk, oj, eggs, cheese) in the third quarter (resist urge to check email) and the fourth quarter (more doodles, check email) is truly interesting because…”

The new & improved me is now able to not only find the column he refers to on the spreadsheet, but I am also able to find the second number he may (or may not) find so interesting. It’s become a game of Where’s Waldo, in number form. It’s not math, but it still makes me pretty proud.

So, here’s my question: Do you need to be good at math to run a successful business? I happen to believe that the answer is ‘yes’, which really worries me. At some point, it’s inevitable that I will be on my own, and I truly am fearful about what happens at that point.

And, this is where the dreamer in me comes out, (See Joel cringing, stage left, cheek muscles churning at a slow, steady pace) and I pretend that maybe, just maybe, if I smile, put on my glasses & hold a calculator, the numbers will make sense. This tactic hasn’t been successful yet, but I’ll let you know if anything changes.

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Owner, Baker,
& Storyteller

You know that friend who has it all together? Yeah. That’s not me. What I can offer you instead are my experiences, insights, and passions. Pithy observations about making cookies. Wry commentary on running a business. Loving (if slightly sarcastic) parenting advice. And if that doesn’t interest you, I have dogs. Cute ones.

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