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Old 06-30-2008, 10:19 PM   #21
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Its rare, but I am going to have to disagree. We dont make money off our employees. We make money off materials. We make money due to the risk we take in creating the opportunity for the employee to have a job. I know Dave Mac and I sit here and spoof that we are cagey old bucks, but I had a true old timer in the stone business tell me over the winter: "Scott, there are millions of guys out there willing to work, and thousands of us willing to let them."

The minute it turns into a "we make money off our employees" then it turns into who is working for who. Our employees make money from the business that we created, and we make money from the business we created. The business makes money from the consumer, if we have all done our jobs properly. The employees are part of that equation. The employees could all walk tomorrow and the business would still be there.
Scott,

I actually enjoy it when you disagree. It makes me think about my position more thoroughly.

Two questions: 1. What do you charge for labor on an hourly basis? 2. What does your labor cost you on an hourly basis? (These are rhetorical, I don't need the actual numbers.)

I suspect the answer to #1 is a lot higher than the answer to #2. The difference between the 2 numbers covers your overhead and your profit. The profit is your money, and that comes from labor. If you are making your money only from materials, why not open a paint store? (OK, that's 3 questions.)

There is nothing wrong with making money off of our employees. If we don't, we really don't have a business, we have a social service.

Brian Phillips
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Old 06-30-2008, 10:30 PM   #22
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[quote=Brian;29763]Scott,

I actually enjoy it when you disagree. It makes me think about my position more thoroughly.

Two questions:
1. What do you charge for labor on an hourly basis?

Depends on what type of service we are providing.

2. What does your labor cost you on an hourly basis? (These are rhetorical, I don't need the actual numbers.)

Depends on the employee.


There is nothing wrong with making money off of our employees.

I agree that there would be nothing wrong with it, but I dont think it happens that way. Certainly, if it did, we would not have such an excess of one man shows on painttalk and in the world as a whole. If employees generated profit, then each person here, myself included, would want a dozen or so more than we have. I know what you're thinking, the one man shows dont have the systems or the sales or the marketing to generate enough work for more employees, but I disagree (and you havent even said it yet). Employees dont make us money, any more than trucks or dropcloths do. Employees cost us money, time and energy. We should take that out of their pay. Ok, no, but you get the point.


If we don't, we really don't have a business, we have a social service.

I disagree again. There are businesses that dont even have employees that are far from social services. They provide services to the public, but are far from non-profit. And furthermore, a one man operation doesnt make money off employees, so would he not have a business?



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Old 06-30-2008, 10:48 PM   #23
 
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I also agree that employee's must produce money or profit in my pocket or else they are no use to me.
But getting back to the original post....Everyone must understand that the way I do or like things to be done is why my customers hire me. I am the one booked in advance so, the way I do things works for me, and my customers.
I do not feel that it produces the exact level of quality that my way does...
probably because I am O.C.D. My work is close to perfect.But it doesn't matter, when I ask him if he has done something..and he says 1000 times before and does it a different way, me as the boss (perfectionist) should reserve the right to have it done MY way. He is working for me. The company that was hired because of the level of perfection we provide.
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Old 07-01-2008, 06:07 AM   #24
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Everyone must understand that the way I do or like things to be done is why my customers hire me. I am the one booked in advance so, the way I do things works for me, and my customers.
I do not feel that it produces the exact level of quality that my way does...
probably because I am O.C.D. My work is close to perfect.But it doesn't matter, when I ask him if he has done something..and he says 1000 times before and does it a different way, me as the boss (perfectionist) should reserve the right to have it done MY way. He is working for me. The company that was hired because of the level of perfection we provide.[/quote]

Too many people fail to grasp this simple concept . . . If all employees were allowed to do everything their way then you'd just be a bunch of individuals painting a house . . . customer hired Kelly's Painting not Kelly and a bunch of bunch of other guys.
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Old 07-01-2008, 06:49 AM   #25
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I agree that there would be nothing wrong with it, but I dont think it happens that way. Certainly, if it did, we would not have such an excess of one man shows on painttalk and in the world as a whole. If employees generated profit, then each person here, myself included, would want a dozen or so more than we have. I know what you're thinking, the one man shows dont have the systems or the sales or the marketing to generate enough work for more employees, but I disagree (and you havent even said it yet). Employees dont make us money, any more than trucks or dropcloths do. Employees cost us money, time and energy. We should take that out of their pay. Ok, no, but you get the point.
Then what is the source of the profit, if it isn’t employees? The fact is, employees generate more in revenues than they cost us (or at least they should).

If no work is performed the business will not have a profit, no matter how much equipment and supplies we have. Until paint is put on the wall, there is no revenue, and therefore, no profit.

This however, does not necessarily mean that we want more employees. There are other issues involved—management, generating sales, etc. Some people don’t want those additional responsibilities, no matter how much money it brings in.

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If we don't, we really don't have a business, we have a social service.

I disagree again. There are businesses that dont even have employees that are far from social services. They provide services to the public, but are far from non-profit. And furthermore, a one man operation doesnt make money off employees, so would he not have a business?
In this context, the one man operation is the employee. And it still holds that if he does not produce more than he consumes he does not make a profit.

Brian Phillips
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Old 07-01-2008, 07:34 AM   #26
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Kelly I mainly talking about producing the same result using a differnt technique.

Such as going from a 9 inch roller to a 18 inch rollers. Same result but faster using a 18 inch in most case's.

But I do agree your the boss, and if they cant respect that out the door they go.

My point was when the boss and worker have a mutual respect for each other, sometimes they can learn from another, wont happen if the worker disagree's with everything you say, then he has got to go.

I would like to here this works out for you.

60 years old and still humping a brush, must be a tough old geezer.

thanks
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Old 07-01-2008, 08:30 AM   #27
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Surplus_value

Theory of Surplus Value.
If you take the political implications out, it makes sense
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Old 07-01-2008, 10:00 AM   #28
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Surplus_value

Theory of Surplus Value.
If you take the political implications out, it makes sense
I don't want to turn this into a political discussion, but I disagree with Marx.

Brian Phillips
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Old 07-01-2008, 05:46 PM   #29
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[quote=Brian;29785]Then what is the source of the profit, if it isn’t employees?

The source of profit is the product that we sell: the paint job. We incur the costs associated with the employees to generate that product which we trade to the customer for money. If anything, the management (ownership of the company most often) is charged with overseeing the operations of the employees to ensure the finished product is worthy of being sold for the proposed value. We are not selling employee time to the customer. We price a job, a finished product, and the process of the technicians is irrelevant to the consumer who is paying for the product, from which we profit.

Until paint is put on the wall, there is no revenue, and therefore, no profit.

Actually, until there is finished product there is no revenue, or profit.

This however, does not necessarily mean that we want more employees. There are other issues involved—management, generating sales, etc. Some people don’t want those additional responsibilities, no matter how much money it brings in.

Again, management and ownership (usually one and the same) of the paint business have the real stake in profit. If you left a crew of employees on a job in most cases, it would not result in a profitable situation. Unless of course the ownership had some rather exceptional systems of accountability and quality control in place in his/her absence. If employees were truly the path to profit, I strongly believe that there would not be such an abundance of solo operators in business. Why would they work their tails off and run themselves into the ground?

In this context, the one man operation is the employee. And it still holds that if he does not produce more than he consumes he does not make a profit.

With this I might agree, although it would be interesting to get feedback from the solo operators out here as to whether they feel like employees.



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Old 07-01-2008, 06:23 PM   #30
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Heres an interesting new thread...Do we really "make money off" employees?
We provide them the opportunity to make a living, you give me a fair days work, in return I'll give you a fair days pay. You start crying about how you are making me all that money, you are probably going to be unemployed.
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Old 07-01-2008, 06:26 PM   #31
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Heres an interesting new thread...Do we really "make money off" employees?
Scott,

I am not sure at what point this turned into a different discussion, but it has.

When I joined the discussion there was a question about whether we make money off of employees. I said that we do, and you disagreed. Now the discussion is about employees being "the path to profits", which wasn't the original issue, and which I have never said is the case.

In the original discussion on the issue, I detected a certain Marxist bent to it-- i.e., if we are making money off of employees we are exploiting them. I disagree that we are exploiting them. I didn't want to bring Marx in, and chose to just address what I thought was the central point.

But back to the original issue. If we purchase something and sell it for a higher price, we have made money off of it. This is what retailers and wholesalers do-- they purchase something and sell it for more money. This is also what we do. We purchase the services of tradesmen-- painters-- and sell those services for a profit. Certainly there is much more to it than that, but that captures the essence of my position in the context of the original issue.

The original issue said nothing about one man operations, so I really fail to see what relevance they have to this.

Brian Phillips

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Old 07-01-2008, 06:33 PM   #32
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Sounds to me like the two of you are saying the same things in a different way. Are you to married.......to each other?
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Old 07-01-2008, 06:48 PM   #33
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[quote=Brian;29801]Scott,
But back to the original issue. If we purchase something and sell it for a higher price, we have made money off of it. This is what retailers and wholesalers do-- they purchase something and sell it for more money. This is also what we do.

We sell a finished product that the workers in and of themselves, without our leadership and without the context of our business, would not arrive at. That which we market and sell, and the reason for which people purchase it from us, is that product. We are selling a finished product, not a service. It is a finished product that we did not buy at a low price and sell at a high price. It is a finished product that came to be as a result of our expertise and vision.



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Old 07-01-2008, 06:51 PM   #34
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Sounds to me like the two of you are saying the same things in a different way. Are you to married.......to each other?
That is an interesting observation-- not the married part. The written word is a very difficult way to communicate sometimes. You can't give the immediate feedback of-- no, that's not what I meant. Sometimes I write something and I think it's crystal clear-- at least it is to me-- but someone else takes it very differently.

And then when you are in the midst of a disagreement, it becomes a little more difficult to see the other side. I've experienced this many times, even with the best of friends. And then 2 minutes on the phone, or in person, and what seemed like a big disagreement really wasn't.

So an observation from a third party sheds a different light on things perhaps.

Brian Phillips
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Old 07-01-2008, 06:55 PM   #35
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So an observation from a third party sheds a different light on things perhaps.

Brian Phillips
While I too appreciate Bikers effort to diffuse the discourse with humor, I think we would be doing a disservice to our colleagues to not allow them to weigh in on this topic as it continues to evolve.



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Old 07-01-2008, 07:35 PM   #36
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While I too appreciate Bikers effort to diffuse the discourse with humor, I think we would be doing a disservice to our colleagues to not allow them to weigh in on this topic as it continues to evolve.

I wasn't trying to diffuse the discussion as much as make an observation on the things you two seem to agree on. That employees make us money. Weather we USE them to make money, or give them the opportunity to make money by providing us (employers) a service, mthe end result is the same.

It just seems that you guys are traveling to the same destination, but using different maps. Semantics.
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Old 07-02-2008, 01:48 AM   #37
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V- “We are selling a finished product, not a service.”

The finished product is the result of parts assembled by skilled laborer/s using equipment, materials, and an overall plan.

How is this any different from the auto industry manufacturing and selling cars as a means of generating a profit.

In either case, the business thrives from the demand for their product, and the employees that produce it.

Unless your working for a government agency, most employees understand they're in the business of making others a profit while earning themselves a living, in various degrees.

Many who have a problem with that, particularly in the painting trade, choose to become “PAINTING CONTRACTORS” and find themselves either working solo, or barely keeping one or two guys busy full time, complaining that they can’t find good help because there’s not many painters that can meet their standards.
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