“There was a time when starting a woodworking business seemed almost impossible.”
Woodworker to woodworker, there was one thing that had me on the side of thinking that starting my own woodworking business was never going to happen.
But here’s the strange part, looking back it wasn’t what I “thought” it was, it was actually something else.
And once I figured it out, everything changed. The unattainable became a reality, and in such a way that it changed my life for the better, forever.
Rewind to 2001.
I was IT professional and I had been working in the field 25 years. Woodworking up until that point was a serious hobby and passion.
I was working for a consulting company as a senior IT Project Manger, managing multi-million dollar technology infrastructure projects for, at the time, one of the world’s largest pharma companies.
One sunny afternoon I receive a phone call from my boss, the vice president of the consulting company, and he tells me in one breath that…
“You’re one of the best Project managers we have, and we need your help bringing project management practices into the company because frankly we haven’t done a great job of managing how the business is run and everyone, including you, is getting a 15% cut in pay.”
I was dumbfounded. Shocked to say the least.
Here this guy was telling me I am one of the best on his staff and it wants me to do more work…
And at the same time he’s telling me I’m getting a $15,750 pay cut.
Needless to say, I was really pissed off. And it wasn’t long after that that I vowed to never again let anyone take money away from me and my family.
This is when I realized I wanted to take control of my destiny, control my income and earning potential, and become my own boss running my own woodworking business.
You don’t know what you don’t know
So, back to the one thing.
Like me you’ve been around and you’ve heard the saying: “You don’t know what you don’t know.”
We’ll in regard to starting a woodworking business that covered a pretty big territory.
Woodworking is the easy part of the equation, starting and running a business you need (or want) to rely on for a steady income is something else.
So, a dear friend of mine got wind of what I was doing and rang me up to tell me he too had been looking into starting a business (not with woodworking).
And one of the best things he had done was put together a business plan. He said it really helped him get a clear picture of how to consistently make an income he could live on.
And because I wanted to do the same thing, replace my full-time IT income with the income from my woodworking business, I took his advice and began developing a business plan.
And, it was awesome!
I was so pumped. I worked like a madman on it every free moment I had.
Right up to the point where I needed to develop a strategy to market and sell my products.
And then tables turned. I hit a huge wall. I had a nauseous pit in the bottom of my stomach and all I was thinking was that…
My business is dead in the water before it even gets started
I just didn’t know what to do.
You see, I’m not a sales person.
You’ll never find me to going door-to-door trying to sell my products. Or cold-calling people over the phone. It’s just not who I am.
And I knew that putting an ad in the local newspaper wasn’t going to allow me to reach my first year revenue goal. Which was pretty big.
So, I was lost… and I thinking it was all over.
I was just about at the point of starting to look for another IT job when Jim, my friend who suggested the business plan, decided to check-in and see how I was doing.
And that’s when it happened. My life defining moment.
That’s when everything aligned and I made the transition from a hobbyist to a businessperson.
Here’s what Jim told me.
He said “Look, no one who has ever been successful at anything… sports, music, business, whatever… has done so all on their own without some sort of guidance or help.”
“Every successful business owner, has had a mentor at one time or another to guide them to success. To help them skip over the hard part, get past the challenges and make their dream come true.”
Skip over the hard part and get your business started
I completely got it.
I thought developing a strategy to market and sell my products was the “one thing” that was missing… the thing that was holding me back from achieving my dream.
But, what it really was… is understanding that learning to be successful in business is no different than learning how to be good at woodworking.
You need guidance. A teacher. A mentor.
You need to connect with someone that’s done it successfully so you can understand how to do it the right way the first time, skip over the hard part and achieve your goal of owning your own woodworking business.
It’s that plain and simple.
The unknown is a dream killer
What really kills people’s dreams, every time, is fear of the unknown.
For me it was not knowing how to market and sell. For you it may be something different.
The point is, understand you don’t have to go it alone.
As a matter of fact, trying to do it without anyone’s help is a truly a plan for disaster.
It’s been a lot of years since 2001, and today my business success is tightly bound to the guidance I’ve received time and time again from others who have gone down the path before me.
It’s been a life changer. It’s the secret to my success.
So, get the guidance you need, and get it right away.
Just find someone that resonates with you.
Find someone that when they speak to you, you instantly think:
“I really like what this guy is saying and I want to be a part of it.”
And when you find that person, take immediate advantage of it and invest in that relationship.
Every time I have invested in mentoring, I’ve made huge progress in my business and I’ve seen a huge leap in my income.
When I started my woodworking business, because I worked with a marketing mentor, I went from zero revenue the day the doors opened, to turning a profit in 5 months. And, I’ve never looked back.
So working with someone who understands what your trying to do, and has done it themselves, is something that every woodworker should do.
It’s your way to take the seemingly impossible and make it possible.
It’s really the only way to start a real woodworking “business” you can rely on for a steady income month after month and year after year.
I wish you great success.
All the Best,
Profit From Wood