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Home Shop or Factory

Poll ended at Thu Jun 12, 2003 2:00 pm

Where do you work from

Shop
4
15%
Home
13
50%
Factory
9
35%
 
Total votes : 26
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Post Sat Jun 07, 2003 2:00 pm

Home Shop or Factory

Hi Everyone,
I was thinking of opening a shop, and i was wondering how many people work from a shop, or from a home workshop?
Would be nice to know how it works out for you...

How much passing trade for instants, you get from a shop.

Cheers.
Simon
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Post Sat Jun 07, 2003 5:45 pm

We work from a shop as my house (and wife) couldn't handle the setup there. I'm at an advantage though because we had a huge 1st floor lying vacant above our catering business, so, the overheads are considerably less than setting up a new shop solely for the sign business.

If I were not in this position, I would move to a shop only if business was so good that it warranted the expense AND running overheads. I'd advise anyone to keep it in their 'shed' as long as possible.

I suppose it depends on a lot of variables though (?)
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Post Sat Jun 07, 2003 11:37 pm

I'm more T-shirt printing than Signmaking this time of year and have reached agreement to put up a display and some order pads in several local businesses. Mainly because they all talked me out of taking on a shop because of the rates etc,.,

I am of the opinion that a prominent position would work wonders for any sign business and hope to go down this route in a year or so.
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Post Sun Jun 08, 2003 6:39 am

Started in a single garage attached to my home. Stuck it out for too long because it was the time of the 1991 recession and I was reluctant to take on unnecessary overheads.

Eventually bought the old village garage, whose layout ideally suited my needs. Sold off a bit of the forecourt to my parents to build their retirement bungalow and built myself a house on a bit more. The rest we kept for van parking.

The thing that sticks in my mind is the knot in the pit of my stomach when I walked out of the solicitors office having just signed the contract and committed myself to paying for it and worrying about where all the money was going to come from. I got back, looked at this workshop with just one computer, one cutter and my admin desk, looking lost in all that space and wondering why I had been stupid enough to take on the commitment of somewhere so big. Within four years the place was full. Another four years on and I am now in the position where we don't have room to swing a kitten, never mind a cat. It's decision time again.

I am the wrong side of fifty, and although I will never be a millionaire I am doing reasonably well. I want to start enjoying the fruits of my labours rather than starting again with the fight to pay bigger overheads and worrying about commitments. I am therefore going to stay here and try to maximise my income by concentrating on the profitable work and leaving the rest to someone who is a bit hungrier.

This attitude colours my views on many subjects discussed on this board and is why I probably seem to be out of step with the majority so often. For instance, I would never dream of advertising in the Yellow Pages because it would attract the very type of customer I am trying to get rid of. Of more relevance to this thread, I wouldn't open a sign shop for the same reason but rather I would have a unit in some obscure location.
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Post Sun Jun 08, 2003 4:37 pm

In my experiance a high street location has its ups and downs, the ups being the location passers by seeing the shop and therefore getting passer by trade.

However, having been in a highstreet location for 3 years i still had people coming in saying i've never seen you before how long have you been here? oh really i walk down here every day and i've never seen you before! The shop used to be a dry cleaners about 5 years before, and 5 years on people still came in with their drycleaning!

The downs being the type of customers you attract (if you can call them customers) You tend to get alot of people who come in and say "what do you do here then?" you say you make signs, what sort of signs? and before you know it 30 minutes has passed. if your on your own its hard work your days ended and you feel like you haven't got any work done for the pondering souls enquiring what it is you do.
Ask your self do you really want the 12" x 6" no parking sign.

On a slightly different note is having a shop front in an unusual area ie not on a high street or a small display area in your unit. i find it works wonders when you get your customers to come in and they see all the other things you do. The impression i get from alot of my customers is that they think a sign shop just does signs, not t-shirts, vans, stickers or anything else that you might do. Its amazing the extra work you can pick up by just saying to an existing customer "did you know we also do...."

You need to put ideas into your customers heads :lol:
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Post Sun Jun 08, 2003 7:01 pm

We work from a workshop attatched to our home, are in an out of the way location and don't get, nor would want passing trade so we don't advertise our presence. It's amazing how much time a customer can take up when they don't really want to spend any money :x

Rab
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Post Sun Jun 08, 2003 9:19 pm

I sub-let a portion of workshop space from a 'lifting gear hire ' company, my overheads are considerably less than they would be if i were to let the whole unit. I also have been fortunate enough to benefit from the customers using the hire company, getting some good orders. My 'Landlords' are also my biggest customer with plenty of repeat business from them, to be honest they probably pay my rent to themselves!.

Cheers
Danny :)
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Post Sun Jun 08, 2003 9:29 pm

I started out from home in 91-92, in my garage, I was driving artics for Edwin Shirley Trucking in London at the time and "commuting" from here, doing a tour (we specialised in music transport and corporate events etc). to keep me going and help in investing in equipment.

I soon moved in and shared a commercial unit on an industrial estate, where my wife at the time had a catering co. that did work for tour, film and TV. I wasn't allowed to take up too much space, so in the mid 90's I moved on my own to my present location, which is 250sq metres, and great.

I thought when I first moved in that I would never use the whole space, bt today it sometimes feels small.

I have a large tile centre as a neighbour, and get some trade from them, but have built up a name from reputation over the years, and don't run off touring these days. I wait for old friends who are doing shows here to call by, which happens quite regularly.:)


I was lucky when I started out as I had a really well paid job on the road, and a wife with a company. I think the business is going really well today and taken much more seriously because of where I am. Poeple always assume you are much bigger than you are, or so they say, but I work mainly on my own, with a couple of guys who come in as and when. I tried employing a guy last October, but it didn't really work out.

I live on a farm 2 mins from the Ind. estate where I have the business so its almost like working from home but at 2 different locations! Its still nice to come home and TRY to switch off and enjoy family life. I think my current partner would go nuts if I was working at home, or had the business any closer than it is now.
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Post Mon Jun 09, 2003 12:17 am

I work from a small industrial unit. The business consists of myself and my wife Alison, with occasional assistance from other sources such as my Brother in law who is also self employed.

The main advantage of this is space. We have the room we need to produce signs and also to bring vehicles inside for livery work.

The downside is the extra overheads involved in having seperate premises. However, I do believe these overheads are lower than a high street shop would be. Rent and rates are generaly lower - and there is more space. How many shops have space for a vehicle to drive in? (Unless you live in Liverpool or Manchester of course - where driving vehicles into shops is a daily occurence - even though the shops aren't open :wink: )

I also believe there is more credibilty in a business that operates from business premises rather than from home. (sorry - I know that will upset some people :oops: ).

A high street shop is much higher profile than an industrial unit tucked away in an industrial estate - so there is a greater opportunity to get your name known in the area. However, as Lorraine has indicated, I do believe you may attract more enquiries from the general public than is desirable.

I've always believed that signmaking is a "business to business" service and not something that is used much by the general public. For this reason, I also believe signbusinesses benefit from being VAT registered as most of their customers are also VAT registered and claim it back - (registering for VAT reduces your running costs considerably).

Having said all that - we still get people coming in asking if we can make "Ford stickers" or a "Red Devil" for their car or bike. I usually get rid of these sorts of enquiries by asking them if they have the artwork for this :wink:

To be honest - the general public are "the pits" and I much prefer not to deal with them. A shop in the high street is liable to land you with a great many enquiies from the "general public".

Just my opinion :wink:
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Post Mon Jun 09, 2003 6:56 am

Rodney Gold

IMHO the real "meaning" of this poll is what sort of business plan and long term personal view/goals one has

A lot depends on the type of business you do and what machinery you have in determining where and how you work

As a previous poster suggested , big business views home based industry as sort of "cottagey" and it's difficult to get a foot in the door of the bigger companys in that case.
Working at home brings other problems and advantages , work is near and flexi hours are fine and overheads cheap.

However in a business one is forced to keep standard hours (albeit you can work whatever time) , there is the "prestige" factor , there are no home distractions and there is some pressure to cover overheads.
I have found that taking the risk or incurring the expense is something that motivates one to sell more - you worry about covering the expenses and become "lean and hungry".
Its all about what your ambitions are and what your long term goals are.
Remember that if your business is a one man show and you are making a comfortable living , you rely on your own 2 hands , what happens if there comes a stage where you are not able to use those hands , get sick etc.
At least take some key personel insurance

Often a smaller 1 or 2 person company gets bogged down in trivia , paperwork etc .
One has to look at ones strengths and weaknesses , say for example you are good at selling and design conceptualisation , then filling in the vat form , doing the paperwork , working on the sign package , running the machines , applying , assembling etc could perhaps be best served by someone else - freeing yourself for the more important things - you will soon wonder how you did it the "other" way.

One of the BEST ways to grow a business is to promote it. A Rep is a very good start , especially if you make it a commision based salary. Equip the rep well with all the tools they will need - they are your "shop frontage" if you dont have a showroom etc.

Always think big , no matter how small you are , have quality letterheads made , print EXCEPTIONAL business cards , answer the phone smartly and with a professional tone (often thats the first contact a customer has with you and influences how they "see" you)
A decent sample range is an essential - if you photgraph stuff , try do so early morning or late afternoon when the light is "better" - try different angle , make that photo look stunning.
Business is all about how others percieve you , you have to inspire confidence - price alone does not do that
As to high street premises , well if you want itty bitty passing trade , thats the way to go , if you have decided to take premises , then take something just off high street , where you will get double the area for 1/2 the rental , it will stop passing trade and tyre kickers - do not keep an open door , this is an invitation for time wasters.
DO set up a very good showroom , a counter with a zillion boards of various stuff wont set you apart from the opposition , the very least is to have decent lighting , strip flourescents will not show off your stuff , try floods or spots.
Have a desk where you and the client can sit etc.
Your production facility should never be visible to your client , let him think you have millions of machines whirring away back there , let your products speak of your ability , not your machinery - tempting as it is to show someone your latest aquisition.
I do not beleive there is good money in a job shop specialising in small walk in signage.
Set various policies , for example we NEVER do samples without acceptance of a quotation , and we make it plain that if a job does not materialize thru no fault of our own , we charge 10x the unit price quoted.
Doing artwork for a job and not getting it incurs an artwork charge and the customer NEVER gets the artwork , they pay for your preperation and work , not to get something to take to other signmakers to do cheaper.
Often one can do artwork free of charge if lets say one is quoting on a large job and you feel a sample would be a VERY good selling tool , we often take this gamble.
Listen to your customer , if they bulldust you initially , blow them off.
We had a crowd who came in and promised us 200 brass plates a week for coffins , I told them to get lost when they asked for a sample , or if they wanted one , to pay a grossly inflated price for it.
The reason : 200 plates a week = 30 funerals a day - thats an impossible undertaking - even for the big guys in our city. If you lie to me initially , thats it!!
Always upsell , educate your customer that a cheap single colour vinyl on .9mm abs as a primary sign for a business is a waste - would you go to a doctor that has a laminated inkjet printed plate up?
Know your materials and explain the difference to a client , for example using extruded acrylic vs cast for something that is machined will promote stress cracks in the extruded if it is heavily worked. another example is brass signage , explain to the customer in no uncertain terms that this is NOT maintenance free signage.
My saleslady got all excited till I explained the logistics to her.
The thing is , in our business , one thinks of oneself as a craftsman
There is a sort of divide between a craftsman and a businessman - one can straddle that with a good business plan.
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Post Mon Jun 09, 2003 3:41 pm

:lol: :lol: :lol: Phil, you cracked me up with your comments about driving cars into shops, so that's wot Liverpool and manchester are like!

I agree with your assessment of the differences.
As for me, well I work from home, always have, always will.
I love home, near my wife but far enuff away from the billy lids in a seperate workshop on a 25 acre property overlooking the river, forest and ocean (just to make you jealous).

I don't have enuff space to drive a vehicle in under cover, that's the worst bit, but I plan to built on later if business booms before I retire, maybe, sometime, well, probably not....

and yes, I don't get those stupid twits coming in for stickers for their bikes - much, only sometimes.

Working from home means that I can have dinner with the family and then easily return to the workshop and continue working to rediculous hours on quotes, designs and invoices.
But the overheads are low and I'm always there for my family, in spirit - if not in body.

Security is a big plus, always living on site reduces the chances of burglary, ram raids and wild goats getting into the workshop. We have a low-tech alarm system called a big alsatian.

My vote is for home workshops, unless you want to join the big guys and grow to a larger shop, but at my age and in this uncertain economic climate, my aim is to stay small.
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Post Mon Jun 09, 2003 5:48 pm

Hi Gray,

seperate workshop on a 25 acre property overlooking the river, forest and ocean (just to make you jealous).


Well don’t sit there bragging about it, take a couple of pix and show us what we’re missing. :cry:

Alan
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Post Mon Jun 09, 2003 6:34 pm

If you look on Gray's site you will see 1 or 2, lucky bugger :(
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Post Mon Jun 09, 2003 6:45 pm

Sorry Gray.

I did look at your site but it was some time ago and I’d completely forgot those personal pictures. Not that it makes any difference; you’re still a jammy old git. :wink: :lol:

Having said that I’ve a back bedroom office and a garage as a studio (never call it workshop) sounds too much like your using residential property for business. And we do have a small dike running at the back of our property but it’s a long cry from your Cam River.

Alan
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Post Mon Jun 09, 2003 9:09 pm

In this Idilic setting its amazing Gray ever gets any work done!

Does the fact that i'm under heathrows flight landing path and next door to a sewerage works count???
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Post Mon Jun 09, 2003 11:35 pm

I'm not sure I understand all this animosity towards smaller customers?

Rodney, You mention the benefit of having a Rep and believe me after many years in sales it's the salesman who neglects the smaller customers that fails miserably.

The other week I printed 2 shirts on a Saturday morning for a couple of lads off to Greece on holiday later that day. I wasn't intending to work but hell I might as well get some beer money and in about 10 minutes had put a name on two T's and sent them packing. They'd travelled 20 miles to get them done. 2 weeks later another call, this time for 12 T's from the same town, a relative of the 2 lads. Then 19 Polo's again from 20 miles up the road and finally this week a quote for 200 T's and 12 Banners. I'm sure the value of the initial 2 T order wasn't worth the hassle but had I turned them away I'd have missed out on the potential growth that I'm experiencing from that area. (:) (:) (:) (:) (:)

There's a well known story in sales about the senior guy from Phillips Electrical waiting outside the railway station for his student son. He was passing the time reading a Rag Mag left in the glove compartment and noticed a small ad from a lad offering 24 hour computer maintenance. It was 8.30pm and although it was getting late it did say 24 hour service so he made the call to see if this chap could sort his home computer. He was there on the dot and subsequently secured a major contract with Phillips to provide a rapid response service throughout the UK.
(hot) (hot) (hot) (hot) (hot) (hot)

Hell, I have loads of these stories.............. :D :D :D :D :D

The chance meeting in a pub that led to the launch of a new magazine for a national organisation.

The date change on a Banner that secured a 400 Banner order.

The pain in the butt customer who ended up spending 200,000k.

The 3 colour 2 hour design single T-shirt order for a girl who was major buyer for a national retail chain. I didn't benefit directly but a good friend now looks likely to get her fashion ideas accepted.

Have I made my point yet?
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 6:10 am

In terms of smaller customer , I suppose it depends on the scale of your operation and production schedule as to whether you can accomodate them.

We never ignore a customer , we either charge them a price where we can make money on a job or refer them to one of our customers or one of our associates who is willing to do the job.

Our sales staff and myself guage the customer as to what potential might be , and albeit sometimes wrong , have the experience to seperate the wheat from the chaff.

One of the other problems we have is that a lot of the really small places around here , despite us asking them not to , refer one offs and jobs they dont want to tackle to us , and the customer is already annoyed by the time they get to us cos they have been running around a lot and now faced with minimum quantitys get very abusive "But so and so said you WOULD do me one badge with my logo you can scan off my 150dpi laser printed and laminated business card for later this afternoon" etc.

In 95% of our cases , the small customer wants stuff done while they wait , and want champagne quality at beer prices.
Our standard reply when they get abusive is : Heres a list of our loyal customers who ordered timeously to whom we have made delivery promises , which one should we phone to tell them that the order they placed in time will not be delivered because we have to fit your job in?

If a customer phones in , one of the first questions we ask after listening to what they want is how many they want , price depends on this , we politely inform them of minimum charges and minimum quantities.

We have to balance profitability and prior commitments in respect of taking in a small rush job in the hope it might lead to a big contract.
We have never missed a deadline , never reneged on a promise and never given the customer sub par work. We have been very successful in adopting this policy.
Yes , you have made your point , of course if we do have the spare capacity and the customer is prepared to pay the minimum cost , we will undertake the job. Having said that , I must also say that the smaller one off customer or small rush job is the one you have the most problems with , sort of like murphys law.
I don't see how I can run my business differently if I am to meet expenses and make a profit. I understand that service and quality underpin sales and thus profit , but we have to set some limits.
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 8:34 am

I agree with Rodney :cool:
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 8:51 am

I completely agree too, Admitidly there are times when a small customer or a one off job may lead to more, but be honest how many times have you been told this is just a sample or a starter order there will be x amount next month etc. etc. and never hear from the person again.

I've seen it all to many times and you get to a point where you have to use your judgement and decide if its worth a go or not.

I always tell my customers that promise me big things while asking for a good price on a one off or five, that they will get a good price when they order big things, the price is the price there is no negotiation. But maybe if the one off does lead to bigger things i will discount the cost of the one off on the big things order. The big thing rairly ever materialises.
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 9:12 am

We have an excellent policy for the sample/starter order on a large order price thing.
We quote on 100 - lets say 10 pounds , the customer wants a sample - Yes we will do one ONLY on signed acceptance of an order , and make it VERY plain that should an order not materialsie , the customer will be charged for artwork and 10x the quoted unit price for each sample.
We do sometime sample without all of this , especially if its for a big co , a known good customer or in the hopes of landing a big contract - One fact of life is that Samples sell a job , lots of customers cant visualize even basic stuff , and often it's difficult to communicate whats in your head and how YOU know the final product will look like to them.

In terms of the quote on 100 order 5 at the same price thing , we tell the customer this:
100 will cost 10 pounds each , 5 will cost 25 pounds each , however the moment you place the order for the balance of 95 , we will credit you with the difference between 10 and 25 pounds for the 5 off you took.
This is a win win situation , if the customer is actually going to place the large order , they will not moan , if they arent then you have got a decent realistic price for the 25.
I might sound really cynical and hard , but when I started in business I was a trusting soul and after being kicked in the teeth many times , I learned - hence my signature :)
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 10:17 am

For some reason the assumption has been made that a walk in customer is only interested in price and whilst I agree it is sometimes possible to ascertain the needs of a customer on sight, from a sales point of view that's a dangerous stance to adopt.

If you think that the general public 'are the pits' your surely blinkering your potential? I look at every customer as if they have a £20 note stuck to their forehead and I want it. I balance time wasted with money spent on advertising and would rather develop the potential of a walk in customer than spend thousands in alternative media (although I do this too at the moment!!)

I acknowledge that it must be best to deal only with the easiest customers doing the most profitable work but that's a goal that is rarely achieved.

When the going gets tough will you soften your stance and will the smaller customers be queuing at your door to spend their money. I doubt it?

I better go do some work. But before I do........

Had a call from a Restaurant owner who wanted 6 Polo's but he had a problem with the price. He didn't want top quality as his 'staff only nicked them anyway.' I pointed out that he had a staff problem, not a shirt problem and we settled the order. I showed him a colour change Mug and he now orders 50 most weeks, (profit on each...£2.50....or £500 a month) which he gives to his customers and has reduced his advertising spend to cover the cost. He has a prestige catering business and 2 others and I'm now picking up orders across all three.

I love the general public!!!!!! (:) (:) (:)
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 11:06 am

I wouldn't class a resturant owner wanting staff uniforms with 3 business as "general public"

Of course with these types of customers there is miles and miles of selling opportunity you just have to tell them what you can do for them, and convince them its what they need.

Your example martin proves this he wants 9 polos, not a great order but your foot is in the door, you now tell him about your mugs, your cloth napkins you can personalise, your POS for menus, specials, business cards, your great classy chalk spacials board, your shop facia and window graphics, a-boards, vans the list is endless.

There is a differentiation between "general public" and small business'

I look at it this way, (almost) everyone works somewhere so everyone has the potential to give you more business whether privately or via thier business or the business they work for. But some of those people will have a potential off 100% and some will have a potential of 50% and other only 1% I'd much rather spend my time on the 50-100% area, some time on the 20-50% area and very little on the 1-20% area.

I guess its up to the inividual, but just think of it this way martin, the more people that don't like to bother with the general public the more customers you'll have :D
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 11:44 am

Martin,

I understand what you are saying and understand perfectly because I have done the same thing myself whilst starting and trying to grow my business and I can tell many similar tales to your own. I have sat here at 9pm on a Friday night working on a silly little job wondering why the hell I am bothering. Sometimes more work came from it and sometimes it didn't.

But those days have gone. I have enough work now and quality of life is becoming more important to me. I will not do a hundred pound job on a Saturday morning any more because once the cost of the materials, say 25%, have been taken off, together with all the overheads, and then Gordon Brown has had 40% of whats left, it is not worth ruining my weekend.

Over many years in the retail motor trade I found the public to be increasingly unpleasant to deal with and was delighted to get away from them. Today even my smallest customers, the one man and his van type, is a businessman with an understanding of how things work, a knowledge of what is possible and what is not, will listen to reason and also encounters the same everyday problems that we do. I can hold a sensible conversation with them.

As Rodney pointed out towards the top of this thread, it is all about our own individual goals and plans. Mine is to start taking things a bit easier, have a reasonable amount of time away from work, and to start reaping some of the rewards of working hard and long for the last thirty five years whilst I still can.
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 12:18 pm

[quote="Alan And we do have a small dike running at the back of our property

Alan[/quote]

Didn't know there were any all girls sports clubs in Grantham Al :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: lincolnshire joke :P
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 12:23 pm

Spot on Lorraine................. I try and sell something else to everyone..........

The Restaurant owner didn't introduce himself as a businessman. He just said he wanted something on some shirts and he couldn't even tell me what. To all intents and purposes he was the general public.

John, I'm looking to retire in 5 years.................!!
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 1:28 pm

Martin - You haven't met the "General Public" up here where I live.

Most of them are married to their sisters and steal each others sheep :-?

Maybe there's a better class of "General public where you live :D
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 2:26 pm

You just concentrate on the job Broughton and keep your mind of the girls it’ll send you bald. :o
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 5:19 pm

Once I was aked to take a manual engraving machine to a golf club and engrave the wimmers names on trophys we had supplied on a stage whilst the golfers partied.
I was offered serious money to do so and basically told em to get lost.
I was asked why , considering the money was good
I replied that I was amongst my peers , and regardless of the money involved , I wouldnt demean myself for filthy lucre to satisfy the organisers.
They never understood , but my attitude was that I didnt want to be seen as a "lackey" no matter what the remuneration.
I used to work on a saturday morning and open my business - but soone realised that working from 8 am to 2pm on a saturday seriously ate into my weekend , I work a 14 hr day weekdays and thought , what is the point of the money when it basically allows me a sunday for R&R - my family , home life etc are important , whats the point of earining the extra if you cant enjoy spending it or have a quality of life?
I fully understand and appreciate the fact that that money isn't the be all and end all of life.
My greatest pleasure was to see an awrd I made recently for the South Africa Vs England launch of out 2010 world bid displayed on CNN and the announcer saying "south africa cannot be far behind if it can produce an award of such a calibre"
That made everything worthwhile (as an saide , we had 2 days to produce 150 custom medals and that award - which was taken home by David Beckaham and has *MY* sticker underneath)
My 15 minutes of fame :)
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 5:32 pm

Phil...your'e right. I've only be to Scotland twice...once was enough.......and the Romans built a wall to keep you (hot) (hot) (hot) out!

I guess we have a better class of general public down here in Essex.....if yer know what I meen 'arry!? :-?
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Post Tue Jun 10, 2003 5:36 pm

Alan bit late for that mate :cool:
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Post Mon Jun 23, 2003 2:04 pm

Would like to thank everyone for there input,
some very good points...
We are; for the time being staying put, just a refit to the workshop.
Thanks again,

Simon
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Post Mon Jun 23, 2003 2:50 pm

Martin...

I was up having a look at Vindolanda fort a couple of weeks ago. The gentleman in charge said that it has been there for two thousand years.

He didn't seem impreesed when I suggested that to get it finished a bit quicker they should get some contractors in.

:(

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