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Taxidermy Trade Association ?

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by A.T.T.T., Dec 8, 2011.

  1. A.T.T.T.

    A.T.T.T. New Member

    Is there anyone out there who has any thoughts about taxidermy being a skilled trade and if so why isn't there any trade associations around? There are organization and associations who promote taxidermy , but not like a trade association would?

    Just wondering what other taxidermist think on the subject?

    Webster's defines a trade as:....a) a means of earning one's living; occupation b) skilled work; craft c) all the persons or companies in a particular line of business

    Webster's also defines an association as:....3) an organization of persons having the same interests, purposes , etc. 4) a connection in the minds between ideas.

    We have the NTA and the state taxidermy associations....why couldn't we start local taxidermy trade associations within counties of each state to promote the business end of taxidermy and to cut down on the competition and rivalry between local taxidermy shops.

    If there are more than one shop...there generally is some kind of fighting between them...I know that there are situation where this isn't so...but the norn is rivalry and competition...either in quality of work or pricing. In the famous words of Rodney King "Can't we all just get along" (that's a joke...hee! hee!)! If we truely love the taxidermy trade, why can't we build bridges and work toward the betterment of our trade together. Seems like the NTA and the states associations have focused on the quality of our finished product and the refining of our skills to fix this problem...and they have done a great job! But has this helped to create more of this competition and lead to more rivalry and pricing problems on the local level where you have to deal with the newcomers undercutting and local prevailing wages?
  2. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    Will never worked and never will. We are at different levels and no Taxidetmist are going to come down on their prices to 'help' another and few will listen to the argument for raising prices. What you will wind up with is a group of self centered Taxidermists all agreeing on a price and The day before hunting season opens someone will break the 'price agreement' and all hell will break loose.

    Many Taxidetmists are in this business because they are individuals who do not listen to others very well, they are very independent.......now get a bunch of them together to try and agree on Sometjing??? $h!t, the NTA has tried that for years and it never worked, sure the hell will not now!

  3. EA

    EA Well-Known Member

    THE "U" WORD !!
  4. Jerry Huffaker

    Jerry Huffaker Well-Known Member

    Rivalry and competition is what makes businesses of any kind thrive. Mike is correct, it would never work. We are independent business men. Nobody's going to tell me what my prices or quality should be. I dictate that because this is MY business. Do you actually think you could stop the competition and rivalries amongst any kind of business?
  5. Whitetailart

    Whitetailart New Member

    Will never work .
    We cant even agree on Bondo as an adhesive.

    By the way it is
  6. A.T.T.T.

    A.T.T.T. New Member

    You all are probably right! Let's all keep on doing it the way we are now....Working toward doing competition jobs on each mount while getting paid less than commercial prices and having the under cutters keep our work cheaper than it should be! Shoot we all make too much money anyway, just come ask some of our customers.
    Wouldn't it be great if all our customers had deep pockets and jokingly asked about how much you wanted them to pay for a job...like on Mounted in Alaska!
    Lets go to work each day and do better work than the day before and if you are in the wrong area, the prevailing wage will keep your wages lower than they should be! Who wins...the customers!
    Car repairmen have a book that gives estimates for jobs...they are skilled trade people. I can give you all kinds of trades that have set pricing. In our trade...anyone and I mean anyone can decide one day that they want to be a taxidermist...within a few days to a few weeks...they are one. They call yours and my shop ....secretly and then undercut our prices and BAM....We'll lose some of our business.
  7. A.T.T.T.

    A.T.T.T. New Member

    Mr. Huffaker....you are probably right....why should anyone every think of us setting standard pricing codes like doctors and insurance companies do. That'd never work! It does between the doctors and the insurance companies...but never in taxidemy!
    The best way to keep pricing low is to have a mind set of "It's mine and noone will every tell me how much to charge"...I'm sorry...but some factors do set and tell you how much you charge....Area where your shop is at...prevailing wages...competition in quality and whether someone is sitting under you and under cutting your prices. We all have bosses...they are called customers.
    I teach a taxidermy school...as my students graduate...we all agreed to keep the same prices as each other...We all did the nearly equal quality commercial jobs and it worked for quite some time...untill another guy set up shop and started under cutting all our prices and showed the customers in our poor area that he'd do their deer head for less at slightly less quality....We were close to having a trade group and having fixed pricing....but there is a #^&*hole in every area and it all fell apart.
    Restaurants have rating codes for cleanlyness...why couldn't we have rating codes by quality of our work and have differnt pricing per code. The customers could then choose which rating/quality/ price they wanted to choose from fixed pricing. If you wanted to make more...work toward higher rating?
  8. Whitetailart

    Whitetailart New Member

    Look the trades like carpenters,eletricians,plumbers, ect

    How are those trade Assocations doing at controling prices. Not to good.
    There is always going to be someone that is going to undercut.
    You can never get rid of them.
  9. Jerry Huffaker

    Jerry Huffaker Well-Known Member

    I'll take my chances on my own.
  10. A.T.T.T.

    A.T.T.T. New Member

    Wildlife 1...is that our capitalist system in action? A person works hard...builds a business...has a good flow of steady customers and buys a home...has 2.3 children and wants to send them to college...has a little nest egg savings account and you wake up one morning and there's a new guy doing what you have done for years for less money. You watch as your business shrinks and you try to compete with them in every aspect of your business. But you're lossing the battle because there is another guy down the road from them doing it cheaper than both of you ?

    If it is....and that's the American way....then I'm leaning toward the thinking of the protesters in the streets. Why try to build a business...more fail than succeed? Why work long hours and make so little for your efforts?
    You are right...there's always going to be the Walmarts...with more buying power, they rolled over the small businesses in tons of small towns across America....their importing of cheap goods from China...caused tons of Americans their jobs....

    How would you handle having a Walmart thinking taxidermist right down the road form you? He advertises everywhere...keeps all the taxidermist prices down, cause he charges so little and does JJJJUUUSSSTTT enough quality to get the majority of the work in, the poor area around his shop? I'd really like to know how you'd handle a situation like that? What would you do if I moved into the house next to your shop and just undercut and undercut you at every turn? Anyone give me some insight into how to get a handle on this situation.

    I figure if you can't beat the crap out of someone like that...join them? I'm now advertising more than he does..taking his display area in sporting good shops ...cutting my prices so low that he doesn't even want to go there? I have bunches of work at little wages and no profit....Thanks Capitalist system for taking a bump on my life and business!

    I'm looking at those weirdo's on Wall Street protesting...through different eyes. And please don't come back with ..."BUT IT'S THE BEST SYSTEM GOING!"! I know that it is!
  11. Whitetailart

    Whitetailart New Member

    So what are you wanting ? Everybody to charge the same, give the same type of mount ? Are you wanting no more garage,basement,barn taxidermis ?

    You talk of Wal Mart are you saying the small guy is putting the bigger shops out of business ?

    You Also ask what I would do if you moved next door to me .

    The same as I did before you moved in. The only difference would be is I would cut my prices lower than you can and put you out of business. Then price gouge everybody with over inflated prices after you are gone. Because there is no more competition.
  12. roundyracer

    roundyracer been to the mountain and seen the elephant.usmc 68

    Being forced to retire after over 40 years of being a member of the work force I feel the pain of those whom makes a living and are being forced to accept other means to maintain their lifestyle.I recall several years back mentioning being a part time taxidermist.Did that open a can of worms.However I tried to educate myself by paying my dues and attending 3 different state conventions along with some NTA activities.I visited a few shops in the area and encouraged the same to no avail.Priceing had become stupidly low by a few.I just kept raiseing my prices.Ive limited my business as to only a few mounts at a time or seasonaly.One keeps tabs or noses his interest in my endevers.I repaint one and do wholesale for another .A trade organization like unions were once great,however some has outpriced themselves and or being forced to pay dues like belonging to a State assoc and having to pay the national also.May I mention some have become cliques for certain individuals.Thats the same as to much goverment.Bottom line here is as long as we agree to disagree is this ok? Oops forgot to use the word greed!
  13. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    Move to Europe.
  14. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Why does this post reek of details Jan vie all over again? SOMEONE had this exact pie-in-the-sky scheme a few years back. They bragged of already having all the suppliers onboard and intended to run the NTA out if existence. They claimed to have already booked a venue in a major city. Get this....they called themselves Taxidermy Industry Trade Association and the T.I.T.Show. Hmmm How did that ever work out???
  15. bill@hogheaven

    [email protected] New Member

    You worry to much about others. Im not familiar with others prices around me. Because I dont care & customers tell me im the highest which is right where I plan to stay. Someone has to be highest & its going to be me !!!
  16. antlerman

    antlerman NTA Life Member #0118

    Have you ever been in a business where you had to bid on the job? Try it sometime. It will make a pencil sharpener out of you in a hurry. Ever went to a manufacture with something you want built? just last night the subject of tree stands came up. Most are manufactured in china along with most other thing these days. Why? Cost. You want a trade assoc? We have one already. several in fact Let's see...there is of course Taxidermy. net., the UTA, the NTA, many state assoc, a few regional assoc, many supply companies, all in some way associated with each other. Ever been in a business that folded due to the demand no longer existing? At what level do you want me to live? Maybe your idea is too lucrative for me. Maybe you would starve me out. Fortunately, I live in an area that is considered cheap living compared to some places. Are you going to try to control what I pay for groceries, gas, utilities, mortgage and taxes? Are you a Democrat or just a stupid Obama socialist? What happens when you loose business because your neighbors work puts yours to shame for the same price? The system works for those that know how to work the system. If you can't figure it out then perhaps no system will work for you. Here's a little something for you to digest. If we took all the money in the world, divided it up evenly so everyone got the same amount within 6 months the wealthy would be rich again and the poor would be poor again. It's not the system that's broke, it's the people who don't understand and know how to work the system. Seems you need to hang out with some who have become successful in life and learn the system and duplicate what successful people do instead of trying to break something that isn't broke. You say you know it's the best system, but would appear you don't truly understand the system. Or haven't figured out yet how to make the system work for you.

    I'm a gambler and a risk taker. Sometimes things hit and sometimes they miss, but never will I except that I have to be mundane in my approach to survival and success or failure.
  17. So you run a school, hope to hell its better than the other 97%.

    Yep I am so worried about it I told a super taxidermist hell move down the and open a shop. My thinking is since I know the quality of their work it would make the others either improve of get out of the business.

    Big ass pro shop is right up the road. They too were going to put the rest of us out of business way back in 1980 or 81, and they advertise something about championship quality mounts. well they still turnout chit and there are still several dozen taxidermist int he Sgf. MO area... So have come some have gone and like every five years in taxidermy you will have to fight a new bunch of people doing taxidermy out of where ever. You could not stop someone from doing taxidermy out of the house or garage if you had too.
  18. We do have rating codes, its how good your work is, should you care to compete. Yes that does carry over into most peoples work.

    Barry Smith Colorado fame tried that in what 1980? Before 75% of todays taxidermist were born. Did not work the either.

    We had someone in our state assoc. year back wanted all of use to get 0--1 or somesuch things certified.

    Well our state has had a certification program for a long time and yet their are customer out there who dont have any idea what it takes to certify and even nonmembers who dont. I heard of a post where a none member was telling people on a forum to get certified all they had to do was pay Some money and they good get certified and not even be able to do any taxidermy. I just hope someone corrected the idiot taxidermist on what it really takes.

    So how do you fix the problem you ask about, you dont. car mechanic still charge what they want, home builders too, thats why if you dont give a rats butt you get three bids on auto body repair and it goes to the cheapest.

    Make any sense now?????????

    So if you are a teach lets see pics of your school?
  19. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    The guy posting this is from Cookeville, Tennessee (imagine that) but by searching him on other sites he seems to just be a Taxidermist who is losing a large amount of business to lowballers so it's driving him COO-COO in Cookeville. He even made this statement on another site.

    Baxter Taxidermy Studio and School
    PRICING WAR DECLARED ! I'm so sick and tired of the undercutting of each other's prices...that I have declared a pricing war here in middle Tennessee. I'll do my best to beat anyone's prices here in middle Tn. or nearby Ky....Let me say again...I'm sick of the undercutting and back stabbing within our trade ! We are our own worst enemies....we cut our own throats with all of the name calling and down grading of each others work and the undercutting ..so you can get one more deer than the other shop.
    McKenzie is going up and up...shipping charges are un-real....Why can't we all get together and settle our differences and all get a price where we can make a living doing what we love to do?

  20. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Hmmm. Another rocket scientist. He tired of undercutting so to stop it he's going to undercut all the other undercutters. Makes perfect sense to SOMEONE I'm sure.