Working for a family business—the biggest mistake, especially when they expand for profits and not craftsmanship.
Not trying different things enough, especially stains and finishes.
Not getting a table to put my miter/table saws on instead of having them on the floor.
Investing in the best knee pads!!
I should have gone into business for myself a lot earlier.
I wish I would have started straight out of high school.
I would have charged more sooner.
Not using an edger dolly.
Starting in a small town cornered by a few.
Learning to run a business vs. just being a contractor.
Trying to take on every job I bid.
I would've had an excavating company. Those guys have the entire job budget to blow before anyone.
Get involved with education and networking much earlier in my career.
I would have learned about marketing much earlier on.
I would have started wearing knee pads and ear protection a long time ago.
Taking on high volume/big square footage but not-so-profitable jobs.
I would have gotten a rider sander sooner.
I would've incorporated taking business classes in addition to doing the job itself.
Not employing friends.
Learning to never take orders from the builder about when to install!
I would have started my own business sooner.
I would have spent more time with my family sooner.
Joel E. Arias
I should've started sooner.
Not being so stubborn and thinking what I've done works, why change? Learn as much as you can so you stay on the front edge of the curve.