I’ve been in business since 1981, and I’m always second-guessing myself. When you read about how others are doing business, you can relate. It gives you moral support. Your magazine provides a lot of information about what others in the industry are doing.
I started doing carpentry for another company before starting my own. It’s hard sometimes to be a salesperson after you’ve been a carpenter. I’m not afraid now to wear the salesman’s hat. Once you start thinking about being a professional salesperson, the sales come easier.
I use the CGR seal on all my contracts and correspondence. It adds to that sense of professionalism. It only takes a second to do it. As an industry, we have to publicize that we’re professionals out here.
The more we can provide the consumer with professionalism, the easier it is to raise our prices. We don’t need to gouge the customer, but we need to cover our overhead. If your wife is working for you, you have to charge enough to pay her. If you want an office, you have to charge enough to pay for the overhead. Charge for what you do; charge for what you know.
-- Jim Comstock, CGR