Dailey Woodworks

My Goals for Dailey Woodworks in 2018

Setting a Goal and Failing to Reach it Gets you further than Never Setting One

Well, I can tell you that the goal of having this post up by the first week of January didn’t happen.  That’s the thing with goals, just because we don’t reach them doesn’t mean we should stop trying or stop setting them.  Setting a goal, then failing to reach it often gets you further than never setting one, to begin with.

Goals are important for a full life and essential for a successful business.  When I first started a business I was asked, “What is your five-year plan?” At the time I didn’t have one but I decided to sit done and right out that plan (you can read it here).

By the End of 2020: My Five Year Plan (Update)

In fact, I just decided to re-read my five-year plan, and I’m doing pretty well.  I’m about halfway there.  My first five year plans goes to the end of 2020.

  • 15,000 Youtube Subscribers.  In review, I’d hoped to be further along than I currently am.  My growth is consistent but flat.  I’m getting close to 6k subscribers.  I need to work harder at that.
  • My Wife and I Want to Restore Old Homes.  Homeownership eluded my wife and me for a long time.  I’m proud to say that in 2017 we were able to buy our first home.  It needed and still needs a lot of work.  I’m not sure having it ready to sell in 2.5 years is still a goal I want to have.  But #achievementunlocked. It also has an awesome shop that has helped my business grow a lot.
  • I want to be a far better craftsman than I am now. I can tell you for a fact I’m much better than I was just two years ago.  I’m proud of how my skills have developed however, it’s not enough.  I am committed to continuous improvement.  There is always a new skill to learn, a better method to complete a task, and a new idea that will change everything.  Be a lifelong learner and never consider yourself to have ‘mastered’ your craft.
  • By 2020 I want to have one or two good apprentices.  This goal has proven to be especially difficult.  I’ve found one good worker (1/3) who wants to learn.  The challenge is being profitable enough to sustain an apprentice (he doesn’t want to work for free).  I am amending this goal.  I’ve found that good subcontractors and friends in the trades are better than employees.  I can hire a few good guys I’ve found to do a job and not have to stress about keeping them paid during slow times.
  • I want a bigger/better truck.  I have achieved this goal, but not in the way I had hoped.  My old, beloved, F-150 blew a head gasket. I was able to successfully use a “liquid fix” for a few months.  Then I was in an accident; a drunk pulled out in front of me.  I now have a 2013 F-150 SuperCrew with the 3.5Ecoboost and 6.5ft bed.  It’s perfect for my work.  I’m very happy with it.
  • Tools – I want all the Tools. This goal will never change.  Specifically, I want to get into the Festool ecosystem of tools.

What are my Goals for 2018?

  1. Save 10% of gross income (10% profit). My net profit for 2018 was only $866.  That means I only took in $866 more dollars than I spent on materials, tools, payroll, and theft taxes.  Sure, I invested a lot of money into the right tools, paid down a lot of business debt etc.  But that’s such a sad little number for a business.  My simple solution? When I get a deposit 10% straight off the top goes into savings, period.  That will also give me a buffer against downturns, illness, and equipment failures.
  2. Operate my business debt free. I achieved this goal this week.  Thanks in a large part to goal one.  I’ve been setting aside money off the top and aggressively paying down business-related expenses.  I’m now working on building up enough working capital to take on any job without “floating” (using lines of credit while working a job and paying it off when paid for that job).
  3. Online passive business income 50% of Salary.  Did you know that my website and youtube channel earns money? Youtube pays me to run ads alongside my business and I often use Amazon Affiliate links for products I recommend.  This brought in a nice little extra but didn’t take off until I started selling woodworking plans on Etsy.  This has exploded my passive income streams and allowing me to really grow and invest in the business.  Notice I’m not saying gross income.  I’m saying my salary.
  4. Sell 10 dog kennels a month. Dog kennels are one of those accidental businesses that fell into my lap.  I’m making about 2-3 a month currently.  I’m working with my web guy to get a store up and running with the goal of selling 10 a month.  The will allow me to focus my business more on custom woodworking.
  5. Specialize in custom woodworking, remodeling, and cabinetry work. Hey, look! One goal works toward the next.  I want to do less “handyman work.”  The handyman work got me to where I’m at today, but I don’t enjoy it like I do the cabinetry and woodworking.  I’m no longer actively offering “handyman services” or advertising them to new customers.  What I’ve decided to do is to offer my hourly handyman services to current and established customers.  The idea is to provide this service to people with whom I’ve already formed a relationship with.

My Shop

One of the most valuable things that is helping me achieve my goals is my shop.  One of the reasons my wife and I bought the house we did was because of the shop space available.  Just to rent a space like this in my area would end up costing more than our current Mortgage payment.  That’s a big deal.  I’m continuously improving this space and making it better every day.

Here is the tour:

 

I’m convinced: setting goals and failing to meet them gets you further than never setting goals to begin with.  I’m going to work hard to achieve my goals this year, and if I don’t meet all of them it’s OK.  For example, if I only manage to make a 5% profit instead of 10% that is still better than the 1% profit I make this year.  If I only sell 6 kennels a month instead of 10, that’s still double of what I’m currently doing.

continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection – mark twain

What are your goals for 2018?

Plans for our Large Double Dog Kennel Are Now Available

custom wood double dog kennel plan - size large

We’ve been working hard to make these plans easy to understand and follow.  If you already purchased the medium plans and would like a copy of the large plans, send us an email with your order number and we will send you a free copy of the large plans.

You can purchase the plans from our Etsy Store by Clicking Here

Get Organized in 2018 – Make Your Life Easier!

Source: Pinterest

It’s midnight.  You groggily stumble to the pantry, in need of a midnight snack.  You make it to the pantry, flip on the light and are temporarily blinded by the light.  You need cereal. Not just any cereal you need your special bedtime cereal.  You look, you dig, you move 14 different things.  Because of course, your cereal has been buried in the back of the pantry.  You reach for it…only to find that it’s empty.

As you plan out the murder of your wife, child, roommate for eating the last of your cereal then putting the empty box back the truth hits you…

You don’t have to live this way! You can make the change! You can hire Dailey Woodworks to custom design a hyper-organized pantry that will be so easy to use this scenario will never happen again! 

All joking aside, it’d be pretty sweet if your pantry looked like this. Wouldn’t it?

We can help you design a pantry or closet system that is beautiful and functional.  Make time in 2018 to fix that closet that always bugs you.  We’ve even created a Pinterest Board with some great and beautiful ideas.

A dream pantry not in the budget? Don’t overlook cost-effective solutions.

If you have metal track shelving you may want to keep it. It’s very strong and adjustable to your needs, but the wire shelving is ugly. Upgrade it with simple plywood shelves. Better looking and stronger.

 

Get things off the floor. This garage shelving system gave this family half of their garage back. Hooks hold ladders, shovels, and bikes within easy reach.

 

Install adjustable shelving in your cabinets to allow for space savings and flexibility. We can modify your current cabinets with pullouts, trays, and extra shelves.

Your imagination is the only limit.  Contact Us today to schedule a free estimate.

PS – We have loads of fun organizing things…

Everything in its place and a place for everything

Merry Christmas From Dailey Woodworks

My Family and I would like to wish you and yours a very merry Christmas.  It’s my customers and subscribers that enables me to provide for my family while doing what I love.

Today we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  Born in a stable, raised as a carpenter, lived as a teacher, despised by the religious, crucified by the Romans, Son of God, atoning sacrifice for my sins and your sins, raised from the dead, seated at the right hand of God, King of Kings and Lord of Lords whom one day every knee will bow.  Our example for living and our Savior for eternity.

Merry Christmas!

Why Did I Just Get an Email?

If you received an unprompted email from Dailey Woodworks asking you to confirm your subscription for new posts…We can explain.

We’ve been working on marketing, social media, and a stronger web presence.  Part of this includes having you subscribed to this blog for new posts and content.  If you’d rather not be subscribed please feel free to unsubscribe… but before you do…

Word of mouth, and repeat customers makes up about 90% of our business.  This means a great deal to me.  Without that Dailey Woodworks wouldn’t exist.  I hope to bring you meaningful and interesting posts of projects, DIY articles, and other resources that will benefit my customers and subscribers.  There is also the self-centered goal of staying at the forefront of your mind so Dailey Woodworks will be your first call or referral for new work.  I hope to earn that privilege as well.

Thank you for being part of the Dailey Woodworks community, and have a blessed day!

Double Bunk Beds

I love building custom furniture.  However, it’s rare that I get orders for custom builds.  These bunk beds were built for Peach Creek Ranch, a wedding an event venue serving the area.

It’s no secret that I post videos to Youtube, but Youtube is also where I go to learn new skills and gather inspiration.  Jay Bates is one of the Youtube Woodworkers I really enjoy following.  His projects are well thought out, not overly complicated, and he uses materials that everyone reasonably has access to.  I used his plans for my bunkbeds.

I modified his EXCELLENT plans to squeeze a double “L” shaped bunk bed into the space available.  I was downright scarred about halfway through thinking that it wasn’t going to fit.  (I forgot to allow for the posts, and the thickness of the baseboards, but with a few modifications it all fit).

Dimensional lumber is cheap and easy to get.  I spent an hour at Home Depot digging through the pile to find the best boards.  Furniture built with 2x lumber seems “blocky” to me so I planed it all down to 1 1/4″ thick and ripped it a little narrower.  2×4’s and 2×6’s can be quite beautiful after 3 passes through a thickness planner. This made six bags full of shavings.

I tried to use my shop vac but ended up rigging a box and drop cloth up to catch all the shavings.

The ladder was very easy to make.  I used my miter saw to cut some dados and then glued and screwed the rungs to the rails.  It’s very strong.

This project was a lot of fun.  And the couple I worked for are some great people.  If you live in the Brazos Valley and would like custom furniture or built-ins made contact me.

 

 

 

The Business of Carpentry Episode 2 – The Road to Self-Employment

I’m coming up on one year of being self employed as a Carpenter.  It has been awesome, stressful, scary, fulfilling, and fun.  It is downright the best career decision I’ve made in my life.  In this episode I share a little more of my journey.  Hopefully, you can pick up some tips or simply understand the path a little more.

The Business of Carpentry – A new Vodcast/Podcast/Vlog about running a carpentry business

I’ve been in business for myself for about 8 months.  It has been great.  I love working for myself, controlling who I work for, controlling my hours, and the freedom that comes with being self-employed.  Running your own business is not without pitfalls.  Tools break, jobs fall though, and you’re always trying to hustle up the next job to keep your family sheltered and fed.

I’ve been blessed with good health and a steady stream of jobs.  I haven’t always cleared the amount of income I wanted in a month but the bills get paid and the food is still in the pantry.  There is also a lot of hard work outside of billable hours that has kept us in the black.  My wife meticulously manages our family budget and I’m equally attentive to my business budget.  I’ve spent time on this website, YouTube, and google business making sure I’m easy to find.

This “Podcast” is starting as a video, or a Vlog, primarily because it is the format I’m familiar with.  Watch the video below for the first episode of The Business of Carpentry

 

By the End of 2020: My Five Year Plan

I was recently asked “Where do you want to be in five years?”  This question always catches me unprepared.  I have an idea, but it’s vague and unrefined. Below is what I want to accomplish for my business by the year 2020.  To sum up everything you’ll read below; the ultimate goal is continuous improvement.  I want to grow as a person, a husband, a father, a woodworker/carpenter, and business man.  Also I want to enjoy what I do and my life.  The best way I’ve found to do this is to run my own business.

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and starting on the first one.” – Mark Twain

Here are my goals, in no particular order.

  • 15,000 Youtube Subscribers.  Right now I am gaining approximately 200 subscribers a month.  To reach 15,000 I’ll need to start gaining an average of 250 a month starting immediately.  I’d love to reach an average of 300 subscribers a month by 2020.  To reach this goal I don’t plan on making any huge changes to the way I make and produce content.
    • I still plan on using my Iphone to record all my videos.  When the Iphone 7 comes out I will probably upgrade to that which should give a big camera upgrade over my 5S.  Yes the Iphone is limited compared to dedicated cameras, but it’s fast, simple, and effective.
    • I’m saving up to purchase a Macbook for video editing and audio recording.  I’m currently using Windows Live Movie Maker 2012.  Microsoft has not updated this program in 4 years.  It works but is lacking many features that Imovie for Mac has.  There is also the benefit of being completely in the Apple Ecosystem for standardization for my business.  (Although I’d rather spend the money on a premium miter saw).
    • For projects I’ll keep documenting all the changes I’m making in my work trailer and things that make my work better.  These videos seem to get a better response than furniture builds.  I enjoy furniture so there will still be the occasional furniture piece.
    • To improve the quality of my videos I’m going to slowly acquire gear to make my videos better.  I need a good microphone, a tripod that doesn’t require duct-tape, easy to use lighting, and various shop made mounts to position the camera for the best shots.   I’ll also continue to improve my speech, editing and story telling abilities.  (Eliminating “Umm…and-so” from my everyday speech is difficult, I want to speak with more precision and confidence.)
  • My Wife and I want to Restore Old Homes.  We love the old style of the Victorian, Craftman, and Farmhouse homes.  Every-time we drive by a neglected house of this style we both want to help and love it.  And yes! We do watch Rehab Addict.  Last week, we were in Fort Worth for our son’s medical appointment.  We stayed in a hotel and went to the Zoo.  On our way to the Zoo we drove through the historic district.  Saw many abandoned buildings and homes…we were drooling.  In particular we drove by an abandoned fire house.  How cool would it be to turn that into a furniture making and refinishing shop?!  Upstairs could be an apartment and office space.  This will also give me great content for my Youtube Channel.
    • The way we will start this process is to buy our first home.  Before we moved to West Texas we almost bought a home that needed a lot of work.  Sadly we are currently renting out the parsonage that used to be part of my salary went I worked for a church.
    • Self-Employment actually hurts you went trying to buy a home.  I’ll need two years of tax returns to qualify for a mortgage.  So we will have to rent, find an owner finance home, or we’ve even considered buying an RV and living on some family land for a few years while we stock pile money to buy a home.
    • An RV/Tiny House will give us the freedom to purchase a home that may not be immediately move in ready.  There are however obvious downsides to living in an RV.
    • My five year plan for home ownership and home restorations is to buy a livable classic style house that needs some work fix it up then sell it for a profit and move into another house about the same condition as the first house originally was.  So by 2020 I want to be close to selling our first fixer-upper and moving into our second.
  • I want to be a far better craftsman than I am now.  I have a lot to learn.  There is a great deal I can learn on my own.  Youtube is a great source that I have used to learn many new skills.  There are also publications like the Journal of Light Construction, Fine Homebuilding and THISisCarpentry that teach skills and best practices.  However, I am seriously considering going to work for a GOOD high end carpenter to apprentice under.  I don’t think I would work for someone permanently but the opportunity to learn both the trade and business from a more experienced person may be worth the trade-offs of working independently.  Either way I want to continue growing and improving my craft.
  • By 2020 I want to have one or two good apprentices.   I work primarily alone, but occasionally I run into situations that it would just be better to have a helper.  I’ve been a “Teacher” for most of my adult life while serving in ministry.  Teaching and training young men to be good carpenters and honorable men is something I want to do.
  • I want to use my skills to serve local churches.  Many churches lack the skilled members to maintain their facilities.  I can’t always work for free but I can provide my skills to local churches at cost and even a discount.  Being self-employed also gives me the freedom to go use my skills on mission trips.  Of course being in a place financially to do this is important.
  • I want a bigger/better truck.  I am super proud of the fact that my truck, my trailer, my tools, and my business are all completely paid for.  The way I look at it I went into business for myself to make money, not go into debt.  So from day one of starting Dailey Woodworks I’ve paid for everything with cash.  My 2003 F150 is fine for what I do but a F250 would really be better.  I have the small 4.6 V8 that struggles to keep my trailer at highway speeds.  My wife’s 5.4 Expedition (F150 with more seats) pulls it like a champ.  Also my truck only has a 5.5ft bed making it hard to load long materials in the back.  4 doors are a must since my truck is also used for my family.  A F250 4-door with a 6.5ft or 8ft bed will be better all around.  When I get this truck I also plan on installing a ladder rack, winch, generator, etc to really turn it into a great work rig.  But my old F150 has proven to be super reliable so I’m not desperate to replace it.
  • Tools – I want all the Tools.  Like my HVAC friend says “If buying new tools all the time isn’t part of your business plan, what’s the point.”

So there it is, my five year plan.  I want to thank Rick Seigmund, Founder and Host of the Work Strong America Podcast for asking me this question and helping me create a defined vision for what goals I want to accomplish.  Having this down on “paper” and out for the world to see is a huge motivator.  First it helped me figure out exactly where I want to be headed, and sencond there’s an accountability that comes from people seeing the article and seeing whether or not I’m achieving my goals.

A man’s heart plans his way,but the Lord determines his steps. – Proverbs 16:9 HCSB

 

1000 Subscribers on YouTube Tool Bag Giveaway

My YouTube channel now has over 1000 subscribers.  To say “Thank You” I am giving away a BOSTITCH BTST516155 Open Mouth Tool Bag, 16-Inch.  I use this bag for my everyday carpentry tools and keep it in my truck.  It is well built and holds all the essentials that you need quick access to on the jobsite everyday.  To enter the giveaway follow this link: https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/f87431f3f3b6327b

Thank you for your support.

 

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