So i have been on this site for some time now, and reading posts just gives me chills sometimes. Maybe its how some people are raised, taught, learn, or just their experience that makes them not want to sound even slightly professional. I wanted to start a discussion on being professional, and get some insight from other members and see where this goes. I was raised with both parents being self employed, and i feel i owe that to some of my views on the term professional. Don't get me wrong, i do curse, i do have a slight temper, and i wear greasy cruddy clothes whenever i can. But you will never find me cursing, throwing a temper tantrum, or dressed like a homeless person when dealing with a customer. I also decided from the start that i wanted to work for a certain type of customer. When your business, personality, and work come across professional to a client, often the future work that comes your way will become better with larger profits. I think a person could be in this business for 1-100 years, do some of the finest work ever seen, and still not be the slightest bit professional. On the flip side, you could act so professional, and have no clue what you're doing. Here are some points that drive me crazy: Bad spelling AND grammar. I KNOW this site tells you if a word is spelled wrong, so fix it. Grammar = is the set of structural rules that govern the composition of sentences, phrases, and words in any given natural language. That means just because you may spell right doesn't mean you sound smart. Text Talk. Ur not txtn UR buddies U know........it takes .0000004 seconds to type the word in full, is it that hard? Talking about customers on this site. I read a post tonight, a guy said " i hammered her with the price because...." Does it matter why? Did you have to word it that way? So if your next possible client just happens to frequent this site, and saw you typed that do you think they will hire you? Ok, thats a one in a million chance, but still theres no reason to refer to customers like that, they pay your wages show them respect. On the job etiquette. I don't allow torn clothes, company shirts only, no smoking, etc. Yeah, i know it sounds all too familiar but thats how i run things around here. My customer doesn't want to see some hobo looking guy chain smoking on his million dollar property, and neither do i. Company hours. This is a strange one, but a friend called me the other night at 9pm, hes a painter and was still working on a customers bathroom! I know we all get busy, but would you want someone on your property late at night, or way too early in the morning? I have a family, as do most of my customers, we never work before 7am (unless traveling), after dark, or on sundays unless there is an extreme circumstance. Knowledge of the work. If your going to make it sound good, make it look good. Don't promise someone the taj mahal with your fancy terms and big words, and then deliver a mediocre product. I have to learn just like everyone else, but my first patio was not 2000 sq.ft. with walls, and steps. I often push my comfort zone to the max, but i have never jumped in so deep on a job that i couldn't get out. When you promise a job that you can't deliver that will haunt your reputation, and often makes customers weary about hiring you. Company image. I try to go as far as my budget allows me to. I have all my trailers and trucks covered in vinyl lettering, and logos. I have one look for my business, so all my shirts, website, vehicles, and stationary match. It may not be something a person wants to do, or has the means to do right now, but whatever you can afford make it look good. I'm not preaching, and to each his own. Maybe someone will learn something, and maybe someone will think i'm just wrong. This is how i do things, and yes it works for me. I would like some others to fill in their own feeling on their professional standpoint.