Post Turkey Day Reflections

For many people, the day after Thanksgiving is a painful reminder of how little time is left before Christmas. Or, it's a day dedicated to frenetic shopping in order to save a few bucks and get a head start on Santa.  

Not for our CFO, Dru. Today, he's putting the final touches on the draft of our 2010 budget. To some degree, it's a wish list of things we'd like to do along with the basic costs of running the business. For example, shipping and freight expenses are a necessary evil. New barrels and a brochure are more discretionary, although in the case of the barrels, they're absolutely paramount to producing high quality wines whereas a brochure we can live without.  

In the past, the budget was built on projected revenues, which means projected sales. It was always pretty easy predicting next year's sales as they were based on the prior year's sales and available inventory. But this is a new era. The rules have changed. Logic and historical data are important but not entirely reliable. So we're employing the “Plan for the worst and hope for the best” approach.  Plan A is our perfect scenario. Plan B is like an audible in a football play adjustment. And Plan C…well I don't want to go there.

Next week we'll have the benefit of our sales team who will be out here for our national sales meetings. We've encouraged them to be brutally honest. Please don't tell us what you think we want to hear, tell us the truth. (Unless you don't like the sailboats on the labels in which case, I'd recommend an outright lie!)

Three days of meetings will be peppered with laughs, pats on the back and of course plenty of time for eating and drinking. Hopefully a few “lightbulbs” will go off that will inspire and motivate everyone for the coming year. But mostly, we'll be grateful for getting through one of the most challenging business climates in U.S. history. We'll thank our lucky stars that we're alive and kicking, with a full team of employees, planning for better times ahead.

Back to those post Thanksgiving reflections. It's not about how many days are left until Xmas. Or, how many helpings I should NOT have had yesterday. It's a time for showing gratitude and appreciation for the hardships our ancestors faced. For saying thanks to everyone who made a difference this past year at Dry Creek. And for thinking about our CFO, who's hard at work crunching the numbers.

In a word, thanks.

| | Comments (5)


CHUCK JOHNSON Author Profile Page said:
November 27, 2009 8:51 AM

Hi Kim,

I hope you & your family had a wonderful Thanksgiving! I'm sure 2010 will be a magical year for Dry Creek Vineyard. I hope your National Sales meeting is a success! Honesty is the best policy, except for your labels. I'll do everything in my power to help DCV & Dry Creek Valley wineries increase those sale volumes. I love your sense of humor! Keep up the great work! Tell Don, Dave, Lisa, Trevor, & Taylor I said hi!


Kim (aka Wilma) Author Profile Page said:
November 27, 2009 9:55 PM

Heh, thanks Chuck! We had a great turkey day and just finished the day after dinner which is always a family favorite--paparadelle pasta with turkey/wild mushrooms. It'll take me a week to recover from all this eating.
Have a great holiday season and we'll see you in 2010!

CHUCK JOHNSON Author Profile Page said:
November 28, 2009 5:50 PM

Sounds delicious! What Dry Creek Vineyard wines did you pair with your dinner?

Kim (aka Wilma) Author Profile Page said:
December 2, 2009 9:46 PM

Sorry for not commenting sooner Chuck but I have been knee deep in days of sales meetings and evening dinners. It's been productive but VERY time consuming. Sadly, Thanksgiving seems a distant memory. I can't even recall the wines at this point...
But,tonight we cracked open a 3 liter of 1988 Meritage that was pretty impressive. Even the cork was still perfectly in tact; not bad for a 20 year old California wine. So, if you happen to have a 1988 in your cellar, I'd crack it open over Xmas and rejoice in this wonderful business we're in!

CHUCK JOHNSON Author Profile Page said:
December 6, 2009 9:09 PM

You opened a 3 liter 1988 Meritage wine! That's amazing you have such an extensive library wine collection! You must have an extensive & impressive wine cellar - maybe one of the best in the country!

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Kim published on November 27, 2009 7:00 AM.

The Event of the Season was the previous entry in this blog.

The National Sales Meetings is the next entry in this blog.

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