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The Weary Kind

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Blog entry by cabs4less posted 11-05-2010 01:58 AM 964 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Warning this kind of a rant!

The other day, I dropped off some sample doors to a customer of mine to help her pick the stain color for her kitchen cabinets. She had already decided she wanted oak for the material and pick the style of doors. The cabinets have been ready to finish now for a week. She saw the sample doors and immediatly was mad about how the grain of the oak showed so much. I couldn’t understand why because she told me she wanted stained oak cabinets in her kitchen when I first met her. During her tantrum she talked about how my cabinets were cheap made with cheap wood and cheap stains. Quietly I agreed cause she gave me a budget of 7,000 to build 18 cabinets with countertops. What did she expect cherry? She was lucky I found such a good price on oak. But, I just kept my mouth shut while she continued to discuss how everyone in the construction industry was either uneducated rednecks or illegal aliens. She eventually calmed down and just asked for my opionion on hidding the oak grain. The reason I decided to blog about this is not to bad mouth her ( she was just upset and expressed it wrong). I am writting to shed light on the bad rep builders get. I am twenty one years old and building is all I know. I do have a degree in drafting and design ( blueprint drawing). But, my heart is in building weather it be furniture or houses. To me the satisfaction of making a living doing what I consider an honest living is the greatest feeling in the world. I have known a lot of good men who have injured themselves some even died building. Men who have dedicated thier whole live to building homes for people. We pervided people with a roof over thier head and a warm place to sleep at night. No, we do not do this for free cause we also have to have a roof over our heads. Now I have gotten used to homeowners and customers taking the frustration of remolding and building thier own homes out on me but, I admitt it has started to take a toll. I have been in business for myslelf for three years now. I have spent half days at school and then spent eight hours in the shop building cabinets. And no matter how weary I got clients would never cut me any slack for missing a deadline. This aint no place for the weary kind ( as the song says). My uncle was an electrician for his entire life and I rember helping him as a kid. He would tell me to go to college don’t get inot this fall-out program. fall-out program was what he colud the building industry because you worked till you fell out and died no retirement no 401K. The only thing that insured you would be able to eat was the quality of your work and the economy. I know that things have changed and a person is able to have back-up plans so to speak but still what you put in you will get out of the building industry. But the general public doesnt care how tired you are or how they can screw entire set of cabinets by not knowing wat they want and they will use you just as much as you let them. ANd the minute you put your foot down you get sued and badmouthed. In today’s society of being two clicks away from anything people do not realize how much time and effort goes into building something. In my cabinets I pour my heart and soul because through my work I can live forever. If I can build a chest of drawers that would last generations then maybe my memory would to. The pieces we build are our fossils. They allow us to leave a mark ever so sublte on this earth. Even as I type this covered in saw dust I have to smile cause no matter how bad the economy gets or how mean customers are I know that this is what I want to do for the rest of my time on earth.

-- As Best I Can



9 comments so far

View MsDebbieP's profile

MsDebbieP

18615 posts in 2816 days


#1 posted 11-05-2010 02:09 AM

how wonderful that you have already found your passion! And I also have to commend you on your understanding that she was upset but just didn’t speak her mind appropriately.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (https://www.facebook.com/DebbiePribeleENJOConsultant)

View Manitario's profile

Manitario

2342 posts in 1538 days


#2 posted 11-05-2010 05:25 AM

That’s too bad she treated you the way she did, because it sounds like you work your ass off and take pride in what you do. I think in any sort of job there are two types of people, those that do it because they love it and are proud of their handiwork, and those that are just trying to make money as easily as possible. Unfortunately, the latter type often spoil it for those of us that take pride in what we do.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Gregn's profile

Gregn

1642 posts in 1639 days


#3 posted 11-05-2010 07:20 PM

Consider it part of your education in business and hold your head high. It sounds as if you handled it quite well considering the circumstances. At 21 yrs. old you are doing great to be continuing your education and building a business. At least the samples have been a valuable tool and saved you more grief than if you had already finished all the cabinets before showing her the samples.
Having been a Handyman for years, one thing I learned about picky people was that they tended to bring me more business than the quiet ones did. So while she may have bit your head off, she may become one of your best forms of advertisement.
Continue with your positive attitude it will pay off in the long run.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View KayBee's profile

KayBee

1007 posts in 1902 days


#4 posted 11-05-2010 07:52 PM

Some people think that their payment for any service includes the right to abuse/ mistreat the provider. This includes mechanics, construction,service, healthcare and food. If you’re having a bad day, you don’t scream at the poor guy serving you lunch just because you can. But a lot of people seem to think it’s okay. You handled it well. I know I’ve added in a ‘jerk factor’ to the cost of some people when doing business to make the aggravation easier to take.

-- Karen - a little bit of stupid goes a long way

View Dennisgrosen's profile

Dennisgrosen

10850 posts in 1771 days


#5 posted 11-06-2010 01:42 PM

I know I’ve added in a ‘jerk factor’ to the cost of some people when doing business to make the aggravation easier to take.

that makes me smile , the silent revenge over bad behave from some people can be powerfull

cabs4less good luck with the busyness you seems to bevery well underway with it

Dennis

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112093 posts in 2233 days


#6 posted 11-06-2010 02:34 PM

Been there no fun.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View rivergirl's profile

rivergirl

3198 posts in 1494 days


#7 posted 11-06-2010 04:18 PM

Basically, as a rule, people suck. Period.

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View lilredweldingrod's profile

lilredweldingrod

2495 posts in 1762 days


#8 posted 11-10-2010 04:09 AM

Kelly, as eloquent as ever! lol I love it.

I had a customer that stormed into my office, before he could get started, I said, “OK I f——d up. Now what is it going to take to make you happy.” I had him for a customer for the next 25 years.

I loved the way you handled the situation. The only thing I see that might help you in the future is to show the samples of wood and finishes at the start so that they see how your work looks.

Gregn uses the same business rules that served me well for 40 years. Always try your best to make every job a win/win deal for everyone. Good luck and for what it is worth, you are on the right track and you will be a winner in the future. Rand

View Howie's profile

Howie

2656 posts in 1578 days


#9 posted 11-10-2010 04:15 AM

rivergirl: you sound like me. :-)

cabs-keep on persevering ,you will win in the long run. You already have half the battle won…you love what you do and you aren’t stuck in a dead end job.

-- Life is good.

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