There was a story that my father-in-law once stated that Netflix was stupid to go online. “Nobody is going to be online,” he said as he swiveled his computer mouse around. We all laughed and rolled our eyes.
Something one of my business mentors always says is, “I’m too old for that.”
That was the day he lost $6,000, because he didn’t read a contract carefully, and lost one-third of yearly revenue on top. All because he didn’t listen to my new ideas.
I was telling him there are so many ways to sell to a wider market by going online. He didn’t listen until he lost his money, and noticed others in his field gaining on him.
To go into detail, my grandpa has a business of selling multi-million dollar violins, that he repairs, and deals. I suggested bringing his shop online. He has so many customers flying in from different nations, because they’re dying to get their hands on his expertise. It also helps keep better inventory as he still does everything by paper.
He said no, it’s a lot of work. I answered, “Yes, it takes work to make money. But not that much, because I’ll be doing everything!”
I offered my services of building a site as I had tons of firsthand experience building all aspects of e-commerce platforms. This meant I had studio space to do proper photography, knew copywrite to make conversions, what colors to use on a webpage to funnel to certain audiences, etc.
I said I’ll only charge him $2,000 for the whole job and showed him pricing for the same services online that made it abundantly clear I was giving him a deal. He doesn’t have to pay for maintenance–even though his wallet is heavy; I don’t want to take advantage of family. Also, I was technically overcharging, because I built the site in a little over an hour and it turned out great haha.
Even if my investment pays off and he does sell tons of his items online, he pays me anyway for my business consulting, and will include bonuses here and there.
He ended up outsourcing the web design to a huge company that was impossible to reach any customer service. He lost $6,000 for the garbage job they did, making his landing page look like a child’s nursery instead of a high end violin dealership. The reason he lost that money wasn’t because they built the site, but because they made him sign a contract that made him pay $500 a month to the unreachable company.
Of course, I fished him out of it and got them to terminate the contract. He then asked me to build everything, paid me right away without a blink, and I trained his worker to update the site properly.
Though he is leagues behind, I understand the importance of his legacy and keeping the integrity of not cheapening his brand. He is a violin shop. Not a music shop. “It’s a derogatory term,” he said.
It’s like going to a custom shoemaker in Milan, a shirtmaker from Jermyn Street, or a chocolate shop in Brussels. You only expect a fine grade of crafted specialty.
He carries a bag with him everywhere as he fights two different cancers, but all seems fine as it hasn’t fazed him. Constantly calling and visiting his lawyer, he realizes to whom he is handing down his business–his close friend and longtime worker, H.
A few years ago, he realized his accounting system was extremely out of date since the late 80s. The only people who knew how to run it were him and his grumpy menopausal bookkeeper he should have fired a thousand years ago, when he was only 140.
In his will, handing down the legacy to the less business-savvy H, meant throwing H into deep chaos and possibly lose the shop.
That is not how you leave the world.
“You’re going to have to do something about it,” I said explaining in detail what he has to do to help H.
“I’m too old for that!” he huffed.
Here we go.