FAQs: If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently?

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My first inclination is to say, “Absolutely nothing,” because I am convinced we all learn lessons when we need to and not a moment before. However, I do have a list of business choices I would have made differently. The list is a mile long, but here are a few:

  • I would have refused to pay even a penny in commissions to planners or anyone because 15 years ago, it almost put me out of business. (I was one of the few who actually swallowed that cost.)
  • I would have refused to lower my prices when I heard the following statement, “If you give me a special price, you’ll get all my friends as clients.” Yes, of course I did get all their friends as clients, but they all wanted a special price too.
  • I would have been perfectly comfortable with the knowledge that we are all going to have good years and bad years.
  • I would have made sure from the beginning to always, and I mean always, make 40 to 50 percent profit on every single job.
  • I would have kept a very detailed list of all of my clients and their important dates (birthdays, anniversaries…) I only started doing this a few years ago, and it’s a great way to keep in touch with your clients.

I have been very fortunate in my journey, and the one thing that still keeps me going is that each day I get to design something new and different. I’d like to ask you the same question: If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently? And, what keeps you going in this amazing industry?