Designer / Maker Conundrum
Entrepreneurship is jumping off a cliff and assembling a plane on the way down.
I’m a designer/maker, I produce slowly and with the highest of quality, I am an entrepreneur with a passion for the tangible and I am first and foremost a craftsman. I am sure of these things… but I’m NOT sure where I fit in.
I have been pondering this quite a bit of late and the big question is; do I want my output to be bigger than it currently is, and do I want to try to compete with big business? I know of bigger furniture companies in Australia who currently outsource their production to Indonesia, China, Singapore etc. In order to be competitive, that company has a factory of men assembling those imported parts and then selling that furniture as Australian made, why? To be profitable.
I know of another furniture manufacturing company who produce their product with poor quality materials, poor quality production methods and with little or no care for the longevity of the finished product, just to compete, be competitive and remain profitable. You might be thinking that this is probably an isolated case, but in fact, most furniture making / cabinet making companies cut corners in order to compete. The truth is, that very few offer consumers the highest quality, the reason being that the current consumer doesn’t know what good quality is and or they don’t want to afford it, its not that they can’t, they just don’t want/need to.
There are plenty of knowledgeable and skilled craftsmen in Australia; the problem is most (not all) hold an alternative job in order to pay the bills. There lies the biggest conundrum of TIME vs. FUNDS, if you have one, you’re often without the other. So where do I fit in? I’m not sure… but I think, I’m supposed to build a plane…. Then I read this: It is the work of this generation to make clear we reject the status quo—a race toward the destruction of our planet and the wild places we play in and love. We cannot sit idly by while large special interests destroy the planet for profit without regard for our children and grandchildren…. It means protecting local surf breaks, rivers, grasslands, mountains—and supporting sustainable agriculture. We have to take personal responsibility, and that means consuming less and leading simpler, more examined lives.
I’m a designer/maker, I produce slowly and with the highest of quality, I am an entrepreneur with a passion for the tangible and I am first and foremost a craftsman. I am going to do this for as long as I can… there is no point competing with IKEA, China, poor quality etc.