The magic word: “No.”

By SignCraft.com

Posted on Monday, February 28th, 2022

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Doc Guthrie has been in the sign business for over 50 years and was also the instructor for the well-known Sign Graphics Program at the Los Angeles Trade Tech College for over 30 years. He has talked shop with hundreds (if not thousands!) of sign business owners over the years. But there’s one line that he has shared with both students and friends in the sign industry many times. It’s one that his brother Don, who ran a sign shop in Northern California for over 35 years, told him years ago:

“I’ve been a sign painter for years,” Don said, “but the day I became a businessman was the day I finally learned the word ‘No.’”

Every shop owner knows the painful realization that they just completed a project that yielded no profit for them. Worse yet, they may have lost money on it. Maybe when they bid the job they were unsure of exactly what to charge or how much time and materials it would take. Or else maybe they gave the quote hoping they would get the job but not have been confident that they would make money on it.


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