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Messages - kodydog

Pages: 1 ... 181 182 [183] 184 185
The Business Of Upholstery / Re: Collecting work time statistics
« on: November 30, 2010, 11:33:10 PM »
Kody -  Thanks for the insights of factory cushion way of doing business.  They are very efficient, to put is mildly.  I can visualize them cranking a good number out per shift.  Wish I could do that.

It's been 20 years sense I worked in a factory. The line I worked on made 3 styles of furniture. A six person crew would crank out 30 sofas a day. That's hard for even me to believe.

That's funny. When I deliver a piece in less than a week my customers usually get an attitude like I must be making $500 an hour. Everyone knows upholsterers only make $5.

I just did a repair for a furniture store. Three piece sectional. I had to replace the foam on a tight seat. The sectional is only 3 months old and the seat is already sagging.

 The furniture company sent me the new foam. When I got the old foam out I laid the new piece next to it on my table. I swear their was a 1 1/2" difference in height. The springs and frame were fine.  I went ahead and put the new foam in knowing it was going to make the rest of the sectional look like crap. Normally I would have suggested sending the whole thing back to the furniture company and let them worry about it but the piece is discontinued (and this is probably why). I should have kept it for 3 or 4 weeks like you said but we picked it up a week before thanksgiving and they wanted it back before the holiday.

 Sure enough when I delivered it the customer said , "now I want the other 2 seats done". I do a lot of work for this store and just happened to be there yesterday when the guy called. He didn't say anything about the other two pieces but said the one I delivered looked great for about two days and now looks like it did when I first picked it up.

Nobody's blaming me, they know I always do a first rate job, but their besides themselves trying to figure out what to do. I felt the furniture company, and their one of the biggies, needs to take the furniture back and refund the costumer. Any other suggestions.

The Business Of Upholstery / Re: Comercial work
« on: November 30, 2010, 02:47:10 PM »
Boy did you just say a mouth full. My wife filled paper work to become a vendor at the University of Florida. I wonder if this helped us get the job?  This is all very interesting.

but rather nothing government does makes good financial sense.
This is true. What I love is you go through all the hoops and hurdles, then ask for a deposit for the fabric, they say, "oh! this is the government we don't give deposits". I had one guy, worked for low income housing, I told him up front. I'm going to need a deposit. He said fine no problem. I went through all the motions of measuring the chairs, working up an estimate showing them fabrics. We were all set to go. I asked him for a deposit for the fabric and he said, "oh! This is the government we don't give deposits". gaaaaaaaaaaahhhh

I tell them to e-mail me some pics
Email a photo and then email them back. Works for me and saves tons of time.

Thanks Doc and Bonehead. I keep asking myself, "why didn't I think of that". The other good thing about that is if they don't follow through they must not be serious. Let the competition do all the running around.   

Another reason I can happily say that I don't do furniture anymore.
Hi Tim. I've been reading your posts with great interest. I'll have some questions for you later on in general discussion. You car guys have got my gears turning. (No pun intended).

The Business Of Upholstery / Re: Collecting work time statistics
« on: November 30, 2010, 01:48:39 PM »
I was hoping someone would come along with experience in a factory setting, with respect to the T-Cushion issue.  That would likely be informative of equipments used.

my wife worked in a factory sewing cushions before we started our business.
The welts weren't cut separately they were made into the border on a border machine. One person just closed cushions all day, while another made the zipper and border to give to the border machine operator.  another person stuffed the cushion.  All the foam was precut and made at another factory.

Other high end factories did cut welts on the bias could NOT use the border machine and consequently it took longer.

So- a factory setting is usually much different than the custom work we do since they have a production line that may involve as many as 5 people to do  one cushion.

Hope this answers your question.

The Business Of Upholstery / Comercial work
« on: November 30, 2010, 12:39:55 AM »
I'll bet theirs a lot of business people that have this problem. For every 10 commercial or government estimates I give, I get maybe one job.

 I've learned over the years that their usually shopping for the lowest price so when they call I tell them right off that I'm not the cheapest guy in town. They say oh no no no we want some one who'll do a real nice job. Right!

 Awhile ago I gave an in house estimate to an upscale hotel in Lake City. This place had a real nice Lobby and the manager pointed out 8 or 9 pieces he needed reupholstered. I let him know I'm not the lowest price in town but our quality can't be beat. I said a nice place like this needs a high end upholsterer. I really talked myself up . He kept telling me he wants only the best. I kept getting the feeling he wasn't the decision maker but I took the time to work up an estimate anyway. 3 months later no reply. Yes I tried to call him back and he's never their. This happens 3 or 4 times a year.

 The latest was at the EMS call center. I herd the lady showing me around tell one of the employees, "ya I have to get 3 estimates". The funny thing is a week later a decorator called and asked if we could give her an estimate for the EMS call center. I could tell you a real doozy about the VA hospital but I'll save it for another time.

 To top it off they act like this is just part of my job.

 I'm sure every one has this same problem. How do you deal with what seems like a big waste of time? 

And when I get a customer on the phone, I'm ready to deliver their furniture IMMEDIATELY.
I know what you mean Doc. I believe the two most important things in this business are customer service and quality.

My wife was apprehensive when we first started our business. I told her if you treat people how you like to be treated we'll be alright.
I worked for a fellow several years ago. He had a good business with 4 or 5 employees. I enjoyed working for him. But he'd do something that would drive me crazy. He'd pick up a piece of furniture and tell the customer he'd have it back in 2 weeks. I'd get the piece done and then it would sit on the floor for 5 or 6 weeks. Sometimes their would be 6 or 7 thousand dollars siting on the floor waiting for delivery.

Oh well! I guess everybody's different. Thank God.   

Thanks June . I went to Craigslist and found several good leads. Don't know why I didn't think of that. One thing I've noticed in this job market is if a jobs posted and your interested, you better move on it. They get filled quick. The good thing is I have work through X-mass.

I talked to a retired interior decorator from Naples Fl. He volunteers with SCORE. He gave me some good ideas also.

Meanwhile I'm still looking and sure I can make something happen. Thanks again.

The Business Of Upholstery / Re: Collecting work time statistics
« on: November 28, 2010, 01:49:15 PM »
my wife does all the books etc. and she has a background in cost accounting.  she constantly analyses how long it takes me to do each piece.  She keeps good records and we have seen that the time varies from piece to piece. But on the average a T cushion with new foam takes almost two hours.

General Discussion / Re: New guy here , old guy in the biz
« on: November 27, 2010, 02:05:18 PM »
Lord knows I learn something new every day Tim. Just when I think I've seen it all, something new comes along. Can't wait to hear your replies.

General Discussion / Re: Newbee???
« on: November 27, 2010, 01:50:03 PM »
Don't feel bad about being called newbie Kody. When i joined ,BC (before crash), that line read "I'm a llama".

 A Llama isn't that a Budhist priest?

Ahh the 70's

General Discussion / Re: I had fun with a scammer today
« on: November 27, 2010, 08:38:40 AM »
I had a guy walked in one day asking for a can of spray glue. I told him $4. He said "but the guy down the street only want $3". I said "will why don't you buy it from him". He said "because he doesn't have any". I said "I could sell it for $3 too if I didn't have any".

I know this topic is a few weeks old but wanted to give my two cents worth. With most employees you've got to figure out what motivates them. With some its money and others might be time off, with this guy it might be a six pack at the end of the week.

 When I used to work in manufacturing they worked us nine hours a day and if we got our work done we'd get half day off Friday. Another company gave us a bonus at the end of each week if we raised our production.

  I once hired a high school kid to pull staples and help PU and Del. After three months he started slacking off. I bought a chalk board, wrote his schedule on it and told him if he got his work done I'd buy him a pizza at the end of the week. It worked. Cheep fix.

 Now this guy may be a hopeless case seeing hes 40 years old and still living with his mother. You talked about whiny teenagers. Have you thought about collage students. Theirs a world of difference. Find one that's paying his own way and not on daddies dime. One of the best employees I ever hired was just out of the Navy and going to collage on the GI bill and he worked for me till he graduated, about 2 years.

General Discussion / Re: Newbee???
« on: November 26, 2010, 04:22:59 PM »
How come I get a feeling all I'm gonna get is a hand full of loose sofa change.

General Discussion / Re: dont open till friday :-)
« on: November 26, 2010, 11:01:58 AM »
Just saw 20 turkeys in my neighbors horse pasture, and one tom strutting his stuff with all his tail feathers up. Guess they made it through another year. Happy black Friday y'all.

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