Monday, October 16, 2017

Thoughts about the GlowForge

RCaptureecall back in 2015 how excited I was to invest in the crowdfunding campaign to purchase a Glowforge.  By Oct 11, 2017, two years to the day I placed my order, I still haven’t received my machine.   During this period of time, the company has delayed shipping several times due to parts, design, logistics issues and many other reasons.  Each time resulting in disappointment.  Review the forums, many owners are simply fed up, some cancelled, some complain, many hanging on.

I’m in the group who stayed with it for the long hual.  Admittingly, I needed encouragement to avoid cancelling.  However, I try and remind myself that it’ll be worth it.  Here’s my personal reasons:

We can afford to wait

The money did not come out of the family budget, it came out of my profits out of Cindy Ho Designs. Even if I did use family funds, my husband would have supported the purchase.  He always say thatI never spoil myself.    Some owners took out loans or sold personal posessions in order to get into the initial crowdfunding.  Many took on embarrassment and conflict from friends and spouses.

Glowforge has a Business Plan

Startups are always poise some risk, especially when they have to rely on crowdfunding.  Look what happened to TIKO3D, who ran out of money as a result of the founder’s inexperience and arrogance. 

I researched the founders and the investers before placing my order.  I felt confident they will produce as promised.  I also researched TIKO3D.  I invested feeling that was a good chance I wouldn’t reap the reward. 

Disclaimer: I was one of the lucky few who actually received the TIKO3D.  It’s a nice product, it’s too bad that they failed their venture.

The Glowforge is still a really great deal

A similar machine was $5000 to $8000 in 2015.   I purchased this machine for just under $2000 with shipping included.   Even with the delays, the Glowforge is still a great deal.  Also with the purchase if you can get 10 new customers sign up through your referral link you’d get $100 discount for up to 10 new customers.  I was lucky enough to get 10 (so far).  If they don’t cancel before they receive their units, the machine will only be $1000 plus import tax

Production Units are Shipping

Owners has been posting their feedback online and in the forums.  Most are loving their machines and sharing their experiences.  When you see the potential and hearling people using their machines reignites my excitement as I know the machine exists.

Glowforge are Quick to Resolve Issues

There were a few machines damaged during shipping, one actually had the glass lid and tube smashed.  That’s the fault of the courier but Glowforge were quick to jump to replace or correct the problem

Was there a moment that I wanted to cancel?   

The only true time I was angry after waiting over a year.  Glowforge announced users had to return their machines to them to replace the tubes when they wear out.  After the warrently period, the shipping cost is on the customer.  If outside the USA during the warrenty period, all shipping cost are on the customer.     There was no way I was going to ship my 32 kilogram (70 pound) machine for tube replacement.  Anytime you move anything, there’s always risk of damage and the shipping cost would have been at least $300-$500.  In one announcement they shut out all International customers as the cost was too high.  This caused enough uproar thath Glowforge resinded and will figure out how to instruct the users to replace these tubes themselves.

Do I still think holding out is it worth it?

When I wrote the above, it’s been in draft for a few weeks as I haven’t had alot of time to write.  Guess what, I received the machine!  After all the heartache and negative emotions:

YES IT IS WORTH THE WAIT

I’ve only been using it for a couple of days now, however, so far, it’s been great!  I will be writing more on my experiences with this machine as my time allows, however, if you want to see projects on the go, please follow my Instagram account: @CindyHoDesigns.  If you have any feedback or suggestions, please let me know. 

For any of you are holding out, please hang in there


Monday, October 2, 2017

Tips You Should Do At the Start of Every Work Day

il_570xN_831920536_848bThe first few hours of your have a significant effect of your level of productivity.  It sets the pace of the day and how my morning starts usually direct or derails my focus.  Having a good productive start gives you greater control of critical tasks, achieving better results and ultimately greater success to both your career and well being.  For me I don’t like ending the day feeling unproductive and distracted.

Arrive on Time and Keep it Consistant

You’d think it’s obvious to most of us to show up and work your expected hours.   Many don’t have a consistent start time.  This affects how your peers or managers who were already in the office perceives you.  You can feel they are silently judging you.  Worrying about your reputation is mentally draining and can affect your day.  If your routine or commute requires you to arrive later then your peers, keep it consistant and try to leave after you served the minimum 8 (ish) hours.   Peers are more forgiving when they know your set hours and it’s obvious that you need to come in later.

Take a Deep Breath and Relax

Seriously.  Take. A. Deep. Breath.  Many come into work stressed due to the terrible morning commute or running late due to morning errands.  As soon as they arrive they dive in to the issues of the day.  Slowing down and taking a moment before you start does wonders.  In the morning, I actually meditate with a cup of coffee.  I try not a tackle anything work related.  I savour that cup.  When I do start the day, I’m not starting it in a harried state that probably affects the quality of my work

Be a Morning Person

(or at least pretend to be)

I’m a hard core night owl.  I regularly work on my small business at night since that’s the only time I have to give it attention.   On average it’s 4 hours a night so I go to bed at 12:30AM and wake at 6:00AM the next day.  I still have a day job that still deserves my 100%.   If you are not a morning person, you need to “suck it up” and at least have the fa├žade of having a positive attitude.  You don’t need to be the extreme and come in singing the days praises.  A politer “Good Morning” without the tired grumpy tone in your voice will suffice.  After practicing for a few years it actually became part of my professional personality.   Your attitude has a direct impact on its effects to others

Organize your day

That first hour is the best time to assess your priorites and focus on what you absolutely need to accomplish.  To my earlier point, that is why I savour my first cup of coffee.   I don’t dive into the never ending new emails.  Sometimes I write a top 5 to do list after thinking of what I left off the previous day but only if I have alot on my plate.  90% of those emails are not true priorities.  If it was that important, I’d have an phone call, voice mail or a post it note on my monitor.   My take is if someone take the time to pick up a phone or write a note, that task is extremely important to them.  Those are the people that I will break my ‘savour my coffee’ rule as it doesn’t happen very often.  Their gratitude is usually more motivating and still sets a positive tone to my day.