This post is in response to richgreer’s great post on “Can you just slap something together” found here… http://lumberjocks.com/topics/23755
I’m thinking there’s a general misunderstanding about how adjusting the level of craftsmanship depending on circumstances is not a skill set in its own right. It is. And a very valuable one. Maybe what we’re seeing is simply the difference between how a hobbyist views woodworking and how those who do it for a living view it. I’ve done both, so i know all too well the difference.
In woodworking as a business, the world of woodwork is a different animal. You have to figure out how to make money with the employees you have and all their quirks and eccentricities. And none of us are immune to those quirks and eccentricities by the way. We’ve all got em. But Rich’s post has reminded me of one type of employee that stands out and has given me my share of headaches through the years is what i’ll call the “inflexible master craftsman” (IMC).
The IMC is the guy with much skill and knowledge and the ability to do the most beautiful woodwork you’ve ever seen. But he also is lacking in some things. Insight i guess is what i’d call it. Because he operates as though he has no concept that time equals money and everything worth doing does not have to be done perfectly. So you have to watch what you give the IMC to do. He’ll cost you a fortune if you don’t.
You can’t send the IMC to fix the door that fell off a customers $300.00 vanity for example. He’ll be there all day with no understanding that the extent of work he puts into replacing a split stile instead of patching what’s there is worth far more than the vanity itself! Oh but it will be beautiful. No doubt.
Maybe in another post i’ll feature the close relative of the IMC. The Jigaholic. That’s the guy who’ll spend 4 hours on making a jig that will save him 1 hour of labor and likely never get used again for 20 years. :)
-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"