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Giving estimates

Hello All - It has been a steady stream of requests for estimates in
my shop for several months. As you know, in order to provide an
accurate estimate we need ALL of the about the job first.
The “oh, I forgot to mention” additions are getting to be a very old
tactic. Honestly I do not mind doing estimates for my customers, it
is part of our job. But we are smarter than the average bears! We
require deposits, and we use contracts to protect our assets. I asked
for advice from an Orchid member whom I consider to be one of my
Mentors and got some sobering advice of: The “Time to sharpen the
pencil” man is trying a tactic to wear you down. You never want to
reduce your value to meet others needs. Best to increase, so the
perceived value increases as well. And I agree with her I have also
asked for estimates for current projects from casting companies,
setters and etc. All I can say is we should try to be more sensitive
in this day and age and not WARN our fellow industry associates about
how we need to make money, in response. I never dicker over an
estimate from someone, however, the way that they deliver the
estimate makes a difference in weather or not I feel comfortable
doing business with them. Kindness goes a long, long way these days.
Making my customers happy? Well in my world, that in itself is worth
the time it takes to be polite while giving an estimate.

Margie Mersky