How to be a Woodpreneur
5 Tips for Success by Jacob Barankski
The wood and lumbering business is an industry sector within agriculture or manufacturing that is concerned with forestry, logging, timber trade, and the production of primary forest and wood products. Paper and pulp are considered secondary wood products. The Forest Stewardship Council regulates the wood industry, setting the international standard for wood products and ensuring sustainable wood production.
Prospering in the wood business requires skill and dedication to the craft. As with any business, knowledge of the industry is essential, along with correct strategy and efficient marketing for the enterprise to thrive. Five things that you need to keep in mind in order to begin are;
1. Understand the geographical location of your business.
Geographical factors such as soil, temperature, and rainfall density will determine the species of trees that can be grown in an area. This has an overall effect on log quality and maturity rate. Wood compensates for differences in climatic conditions by swelling, cracking, or contracting. The weather conditions of an area influence the durability of a final wood product and the level of care needed to maintain it at optimum quality.
2. Build right skillset
Regardless of the sector that you are in, the wood business requires a certain level of technical skills and craftsmanship. Advancements in technology have increased wood applications beyond the construction and paper industry. For instance, wood is now used as interior paneling in the automotive industry. While you can hire employees to assist in craftsmanship, taking a course in woodwork can also be beneficial for you as the leader enabling you to be better at assessing the quality of work.
3. Become an educational resource
Transfer your knowledge to your customers in woodworking to boost your relevance and authority. Provide in-depth consultations to your customers, as well as recommend practical and valuable solutions depending on their needs.
4. Consider Your Carbon Footprint
In both the United States and Europe, 60% of the forest cover is harvested annually to meet the demand of the timber industry. That has a significant effect on climate by worsening the greenhouse effect and the ability of the earth to replenish itself. Better climate change management requires that one bemindful of the harm they could be causing. A carbon-friendly solution to the downsides of lumbering can be; using drywall construction instead of door frames, recycling paper, and replacing the trees cut down, for example, planting two trees in place of each one that is cut down, minimizing the waste of wood through professional craftsmanship, reducing the use of exotic woods and promoting the use of bamboo wood and eco-friendly sources of fuel such as briquettes.
Check the regulations regarding timber woodlands in the area where you want to set your business to ensure you are operating within the law. In the US, forestry and logging are regulated within the agricultural sector, with additional regulations provided by the National Forestry Service.
As with any other business, I advise entrepreneurs to take their time and learn from their mistakes. Building a business is gradual; it takes skills and time, and requires one to be patient to reap the maximum rewards. Collaborate effectively and network well and widely within the timber industry. With these tips, one is bound to succeed.
Jacob Baranski is an entrepreneur based out of Guelph with professional interests in construction, real estate, and design.
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