Monday, August 31, 2015
NEEDS VS. WANTS
Once I finished the lamp, I put it on the floor for sale, and when I returned the following week, that little gem was gone.
I posted a photo of it on Pinterest and it's been re-pinned quite a few times.
Sometimes at work we get so caught up in paying projects that you thirst to do something creative like a junkie thirsts for a fix,
We had an empty day last week, so I decided to re visit the welded chain lamp.
The concept didn't change, but the quality sure did.
I've always been a sworn enemy of repetition, but the way I justified doing something I had already done, was by telling myself that I never got to spend any time with the first welded chain lamp.
When I put that lamp on the floor for sale, the fucking welds were still hot, and then it was gone.
This lamp is for me. I need another lamp like I need another pair of jeans, but it has a value to me that doesn't entail a dollar amount.
I will most likely make a couple more to put on our Etsy shop closer to the Holidays, and then turn the page.
The second photo was a job for a client that consisted of steel railings, glass and steel partitions, and rift cut red oak floor to ceiling balusters.
That project was a departure for us in the sense that we nailed the gap between rustic and modern.
The way me and Zack operate is like a game of chess. The goal is to stay one move ahead of the others, but the difference is that we're both going for the same kings throat.
We've created a comfort zone in reference to our style, and this project nudged us outside that zone.
When you build something in a more commercial setting, you may have hundreds if not thousands of people either walk by or utilize a space or a piece that you've created. Their time in the environment you created is limited. When you build in someones home, it's the same mother fuckers, day in and day out that are exposed to your work, so your shit has got to be tight.
There are only 2 simple factors that dictate the outcome of a project...time and money.
Unfortunately, these days, nobody wants to spend any money and they want their job done in a day.
It always blows my fucking mind where people want to cut corners.
Someone will go buy a $3000 computer, and want to set it up on a $400 desk. It doesn't make sense to me. Somewhere down the road of life, the lines between what you want vs. what you can afford have gotten blurred.
Recently, there was an event where someone wanted to use a bunch of our furniture, but here's the kicker...they thought they were so fucking important on the tree of life, that they shouldn't have to PAY us to use OUR furniture. Needless to say, they got nothing, but we deal with personalities like that almost daily.
Another good one is the people that want to know the material cost. Here's the deal....the material cost of a project doesn't mean shit to you. You could have a gigantic pile of wood and steel,but without us turning it into something beautiful, well, you'd be the proud owner of a pile of wood and steel.
I've never walked into Macy's to purchase a pair of pants and asked "how many yards of denim were used to make these, and how much was the denim per yard, and how much was the thread, and how much were the buttons and rivets, etc". That would just be ridiculous right?
Trust me, when you want something custom built, the math has been done for you. If we screw up the math, we eat shit, and we're not in the shit eating business.
I don't mean to come across as "dicky", but we're in this constant state of negotiation and price justification, and most of the time it's with people that have money to burn!
Photo 2....that guy...fucking regular working guy. He wanted something done, he had a vision, wanted us to do our thing, got a price, and didn't blink an eye. The only question he asked is "when can you start?"
Then, you get the guy who's company has 9 locations, 102 employees, drives to your meeting in a $150k car, and wants to kick you in the balls over $100.
Zack usually takes the lead in these negotiation situations. He is very professional in dealing with these types of clients where as I want to jump on the table and scream "FUCK YOU!!!!!" in their faces. There's been situations where Zack is thinking in his head "don't speak Brian, please don't speak, pleeeease do not say a word....please god, do not let this man say anything" and he's thinking it so strongly that I can hear him.
Whew! glad to get that off my chest.
It all boils down to needs vs. wants.
We don't provide people with anything they NEED in order to survive. We provide people with things they WANT.
My advice to customers of any kind is handle your needs and never make a concession on your wants.