When we purchased our house in Temple, TX, we knew we had work to do.

For instance, our house had 3 water heaters, 2 of which needed to be replaced. 3! We opted to boot one. So we called an experienced plumber to remove one and replace the other. His name is Joe Trdy (that's not a misspelling, and with difficultly, I'm going to pass on commenting...).

After inspection, he said, "Mr. Palmer, you're not going to believe this, but I installed those water heaters 20+ years ago."

Temple isn't small and neither is Central Texas. It's no metropolis, but there are hundreds of plumbers, so the odds of this coincidence are high.

Crazy as it was, Joe was our guy and did a(nother) great job installing our water heater.

But it struck me: how dedicated must one be to a career to install not 2, but 3 different water heaters in the same home over 20+ years?

Last January, my wife and I made a significant decision to change careers. Not only that, we moved our family from Maryland to Texas. The change was scary. But all signs pointed toward starting my own business to provide web design, web development, graphic design, and marketing strategies to small businesses.

And thinking about Joe's long, faithful career doing the same thing over and over – the slow, steady path to success – was encouraging.

For example, in the first 6 months of business maybe he installed 8 water heaters? 10? After a year – 20? 20 years – 4000? More? Think he knows what he's doing now?

Plumbing isn't genius. Anyone may hop on YouTube, putz around and possibly fix a leak, install a faucet, or with a little luck, put in a water heater. Same for a website. There are dozens of DIY website builders including GoDaddy, Wix, or Squarespace. Write a few things about yourself, grab photos, and a few clicks later you're set! Head to Home Depot, pick up a wrench, pipe, and you're ready to install a new water heater.

Or not – and hire the guy who installed your water heater the first time. He shows up one morning and by 2 PM is sweeping up the last of his mess, shaking your hand.

Patience & The Long Haul

In some shape or form I've been connected to the graphic design, web development and marketing world for 23 years. I've designed and redesigned websites for the same clients two, even three times. A water heater eventually gets old; so does a website.

And while starting a new career to own and run a creative design and marketing agency scares the pants off me, I'm inspired by the patient, competent dedication of Joe the Plumber.

There's hope in operating a business with patience and customer care as core values. Those values bring customers back. Sometimes that care and patience shows when you fix the mess made by a customer or client when they attempted to do the work on their own.

Those values drive me to be a marketing and design solution for your small business. I want to be the creative agency that walks with you for a year or even 10 years. The guy who designs your first website; first logo; first marketing plan; and 3rd, 4th, and 10th.

So hand over the wrench because we have work to do!