Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 24

"
I like to ask
successful clients
how they got to
this point in their
life and whether
they have any
advice for a
younger guy like
me. About 90% of
them are willing
to share some
great wisdom.
3. Educate your customers
Some prospects assume that Southern
Stitch orders cushions and other finished
products from suppliers. " Customers
often have an unrealistic sense of what's
involved in creating the finished product, "
Wayne says. " They don't always realize
how we craft high-quality products
that are built to last. "
For any size shop, Wayne recommends
breaking up a project into stages, not
only to streamline the workflow but to
help educate customers about why your
products are a good investment. " When
clients ask about where their project is
in our work-in-progress queue, we can
tell them what department it's currently
in, " Wayne says. " This helps customers
understand there's more to our skills
than what they may assume. "
4. Blend the best of the
traditional and the new
" We're a hybrid shop, with traditional,
old-school patterns and techniques-
except for flooring-and we also invest
in technology, " says Wayne, who uses
CAD software, CNC equipment and
2D and 3D scanning. " For the most
part, we capture our projects digitally
for repeatability and cutting on our
CNC. You can still use these processes
for hand cutting as well. "
5. Communicate early and often
Wayne and his team communicate with
clients throughout the project, not just
at the beginning and the end. " Giving
customers regular updates with pictures
and videos really puts them at ease with
the lead time, " Wayne says. " It also helps
us educate customers about why they're
getting their money's worth. Plus, this
communication buys you time. "
6. Streamline your systems
Scheduling can be a challenge for businesses
like Southern Stitch. That's why
Wayne follows an organized system each
week. Monday is devoted to administrative
work in the office, from developing
estimates for customers to handling
bookwork. Tuesday through Thursday
is prime time for working in the shop.
Friday is geared toward on-site work
for customers. This efficient schedule
allows Southern Stitch to operate with
Wayne, and two other team members,
one full-time and one part-time.
7. Go mobile
On-site,
aftermarket leather installations
in vehicles make up about 50%
of Southern Stitch's business, thanks
to Wayne's mobile installation service.
Instead of focusing on classic cars, he
specializes in vehicles from 1990 and
ADVICE FOR YOUNG FABRICATORS
S
teven Wayne says the primary challenge for any young
person interested in starting a fabrication business is to
understand the do's and don'ts of entrepreneurship in the
upholstery business.
" If you don't like thinking upside down, inside out and
backward, you don't like problem solving or don't like
interacting with lots of different people, this isn't the job for you.
But if you can handle all that and like creating things with your
hands, come on board. "
24 Marine Fabricator | Sept/Oct 2023
"

Marine Fabricator September/October 2023

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Marine Fabricator September/October 2023

Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - Cover1
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - Cover2
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 1
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 2
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 3
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 4
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 5
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 6
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 7
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 8
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 9
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 10
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 11
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 12
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 13
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 14
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 15
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 16
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 17
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 18
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 19
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 20
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 21
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 22
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 23
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 24
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 25
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 26
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 27
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 28
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 29
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 30
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 31
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 32
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 33
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Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 35
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Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 37
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 38
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 39
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 40
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 41
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 42
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 43
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 44
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 45
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 46
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 47
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - 48
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - Cover3
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - Cover4
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - MarineConfBroch1
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - MarineConfBroch2
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - MarineConfBroch3
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - MarineConfBroch4
Marine Fabricator September/October 2023 - MarineConfBroch5
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