Wednesday, May 27

Slap Some Paint On It

Last month we spent the majority of the down time painting the entire inside of the tanning salon.  This past weekend I spent most of the free time staining my deck overlooking the Ohio River.  Once complete - you can easily step back and say damn, that looks better!

This thought has inspired this quick blog post.  Sure, paint isn't always completely cheap.  You're probably looking at close to $25.00 for a gallon.  But the difference just a little work and paint can do makes a world of difference.

One overlooked part of running a decent business is just the pride in the business itself.  Nobody wants to go into a barber shop that is dirty as hell or looks like you give out a bucket of lice with every hair cut.  It will actually hurt your business if you leave it looking like shit and cause eyesores for those passing by or swinging through for the first time.

Believe me when I say people have no problem complaining or bitching.  Word of mouth, by itself, can make or break your business.  Why wouldn't you just spend the extra time making your business look presentable if it meant less bitching and possible additional revenue?  Not to mention just the fact that it makes your area and town look a little better.  If you build it - it will come.

One reason might be the amount of time.  Let's face it, running a business (of any size) is mentally and physically draining enough some times.  Someone who has never been around a business from an operating or owning aspect might not get this.  They don't see you sweeping your floor, mopping up the restroom and cleaning the toilet on a Sunday, making trips to the store to buy supplies, spending hours keeping your books straight and paying bills for the business itself.  All of this is nonexistent to them.  What is existent is that your business looks like shit and needs an overhaul.  Regardless if they do business with you or not, chances are that person who views your storefront, business, or even our transportation with your company logo on it will catch the ear of someone who quite possibly could be a possible customer of yours.

With that said - the weather is getting better as we head into Summer.  Take a little bit of time and clean your businesses up.  I know painting the front of my shop is on my list of things to do.

Love life.

Tuesday, May 5

Rough April leads to Good Deeds

I've been hell bent on keeping at least one of those New Years Resolutions - adding a blog post each week for the rest of the year.

I figured I would just give you a quick update of things the past few weeks.

First of all, we lost a good kid in our community due to a freak accident he had at his new job.  He worked at the Walmart distribution center in northeastern Ohio.  He actually was only working on his second week on the job when he passed away.  I'm not going to focus on what I know of the operations of Walmart's distribution center and timed pullers at their distribution center. It leaves me shaking my head.  I really don't know anyone who had one bad thing to say about this young guy that passed away.  I went to the calling hours, which were actually held in the highschool and the entire school was packed.  It was over a 3 hour wait to pay your respects.

The following Saturday I did a "Cut Off" at the shop.  If you're new to my blog or way of doing business, a Cut Off is basically when we hit the shop, cut heads and all proceeds and donations go towards a particular cause.  This time it was for this young guy that passed away at work.  Within 11 hours, we managed to raise a little less than 700 bucks, all of that and then some which were deposited to an account for his daughter.  I've known his dad for about 5 years, again - a great guy.  His dad reached out to me on Facebook, where I advertised the Cut Off, telling me thanks.  Earlier that day his dad swung by to say thanks.  It was hard to look at him and there were limited words between us.  It was just a mutual feeling of two guys that have sons in disbelief and obviously unlimited grief. 

I'll never understand why good people are taken from good people.  Then again - that's not my job.

The past two weeks we also have taken partial proceeds to help some kids pay for the pay to play sports. It's something that really confuses me.  I get letters all the time requesting to sponsor teams.  Turn around and the same teams have players on it that are required to pay additional fees to play the sports.  We're talking as young as 5 or 6 years old.  I can no longer justify sponsoring teams for 300 bucks or more only to see kids not being able to participate because their parents cannot flip an additional 100 bucks, not counting gas money, etc.  This year instead of sponsoring teams, I decided to secretly sponsor the kids themselves.  We managed to purchase 10 gloves, 3 pairs of cleats, and pay for 17 kids to pay from 4 different local schools.  The kids didn't realize what was going on, and to be honest with you the majority of the parents or caregivers could give a shit less one way or another.  I did have one single mom give me a big hug while I was covered in hair and tell me how much she appreciate it.  That's all it's about.

Love life.

Tuesday, April 21

The Pushover

It is always easier to start off as a no nonsense asshole than a pushover.  I'm wired as a people pleaser, and most time it doesn't bother me.  I like the idea of helping people out as much as possible. As a small business owner and owner of some investment property, I do find it frustrating when I try to bend over backwards to help people out and get taken advantage of repeatedly in hopes that those people will eventually make it right.

I had a conversation with a young preacher within the past few weeks.  He was talking about how he helps with the food pantry and has gotten to the point of just drilling some people with questions because he found they were being taken advantage of.  Even as far as going to the point of contacting the police when they were there on occasions to make sure there were no open felonies pending against them.  He told me about how he would just ask them if they are hooked on drugs, steal, etc. just point blank.  I actually admire that about him.

I rent a few things out and I find it exhausting having to continuously ask and beg for the agreed money.  I even found myself saying to hell with it, lets start from scratch on occasion.  Also, the area I live in I run into all types of people that swing through my shop and want a free haircut and have no problem with spinning around and telling me they need to borrower money for a sandwich or something after I waste my time cleaning them up to look good inside their free apartment all week.

I found my rock bottom in my early and mid twenties and even at that point I would rather ask someone if there was something I could do to make a buck and never just begged and asked for money.  I don't know, it's a pride thing with me I guess.  We all have to swallow it in life at one point, but for some of us it takes a lot more water to get that pride pill down.

As I have gotten older (notice I did not say mature - I'm still a kid trapped in an old mans body), I try to make things work without headache, worry, fear, or more importantly drama.  I find this pretty difficult lately.  You're either on one side of the fence or the other.  To be an asshole, or not to be an asshole - that is the question.

Love life.