I have a friend who makes custom metal signs. His name is Aaron May. He doesn’t have a website, but you can find him on Instagram at mays_metal. (Click here to visit his page) The other day, I hired him to make a 24″ metal sign of my logo.
He does awesome work! I was so happy with the sign that I posted pictures of it on all of my social media sites. The next day, I had a very kind appraiser in California, Mark Buhler, who many of you may know, respond to my Facebook post. He told me to look at the spelling on my sign. Within seconds, I realized that the letter “r” was missing in the word Perfo*mance. (Oh sure! Now I see the red squiggly line under the misspelled word. WordPress is just rubbing it in.) My heart immediately sank. I knew what this meant. You see, Aaron’s machine takes the image that is uploaded to the program, and cuts the metal exactly the way the uploaded image looks. Since I had provided the logo, I knew that it was not his fault. I was not sure whether to laugh or cry because I knew what this meant. Here is a picture of the first sign.
Let’s go back in time for a moment, to really appreciate the magnitude of this typo. When I started my own appraisal business in 2000, I came up with the name Aspen Appraisal Services. It’s because Aspen, Colorado was one of my favorite places to visit, while growing up in Denver. I also came up with the tag line “For Peak Performance”. A little play on the mountain peaks of Colorado, and my desire to perform excellent appraisal work. My logo at the time was a clip-art style picture of some mountains. I was not in love with it, but it was adequate for 17 years.
Flash forward to 2017. I decided my logo was pretty lame and wanted a new one. I hired a company to design a new logo for me. I asked for something circular, with a stately looking house and mountains in the background. After a couple of revisions, (clearly not spelling revisions) I had my logo.
This brings us back to present day. Since my new logo was designed, I have used it on my business cards, travel mugs, key chains along with hundreds of social media posts. They all have my logo with the typo.
I now have several cases of vintage mugs, business cards and tape measures I will be giving away to friends and family in order to permanently be remembered as the dude that had the typo on his logo. Who knows, maybe they will be worth something some day. Hey, what’s the market rate for a good laugh?
Here is a short video showing some of the things my logo was on. Enjoy!
It’s funny because in 2 years, no one caught it, or at least didn’t say anything. Not even my wife. (And she normally catches those kinds of things) If anyone saw it and didn’t say anything, that’s okay also. It’s my mistake and I would never expect anyone to say anything. But I am grateful to Mark for saying something. Thanks buddy! I owe you big time!
This typo demonstrates how our brains sometimes work. (At least mine) Ironically, I wrote an article on this topic, in an older blog that was actually published in several appraisal magazines. It’s entitled, “8 Steps To Help Minimize Appraisal Errors”. Awkward! Click here is a link to my article.
Here is an excerpt from it:
“So, why is it so hard to catch our own mistakes? In Terry Nelson’s Quill article, Writing in The E-World, it is called “inattentional blindness”. It explains that “The brain…is processing outside of conscious awareness to prevent overload like a computer crash, it will only process so much information. It filters out what we expect to see. I expected to see a quotation mark, so my brain filled the gap. I thought it was there, but it wasn’t”.
There are many lessons to learn here. While we take our work seriously, we can’t take ourselves too seriously when we make mistakes. We all make mistakes. It’s part of being human. I’m certainly not proud of the typo. In fact, I am still very embarrassed and humiliated by it. But it happens. I quickly found the humor in the situation. I called a friend of mine, Ryan Lundquist, who is also from California, to get some advise on how to handle the situation. He gave me some great advice. He recommended writing about it and not worrying about it. I had actually thought about writing about this, but I was not sure. He said to just own it. He also made a nice point that if someone is not going to give me business because of a typo, I don’t want that kind of client anyway. He’s so right! Thanks to Ryan for talking me down off the ledge! (There’s a lot of great people in California!) So, here I am, confessing my typo to the world. By the way, I do run a spell checker on every appraisal I send out. But it takes a village to keep me typo-free.
I have added some personal spelling protocol to help me avoid future typos.
Jamie Owen’s Spelling Protection Protocol (I doubt this is going to work)
1. Always wear my reading glasses when doing important work, like ordering a new logo.
2. Never order important things on my cell phone.
3. Never order important things after 10pm.
4. Never order important things after having a glass of wine.
5. Ask 5 people to proof read wording on things that many people will see.
6. Then ask 10 more people to proof read wording on things people will see.
When I was made aware of the typo, I was not angry. But I did wonder if the company I hired to design the logo, had made the typo. So, I pulled up the order, and much to my chagrin, they added the wording to my logo exactly the way I ordered it. My hats off to a fine company that did exactly what I ordered! They were kind enough to correct it last week.
Moving forward, the spelling will be correct on my logo. (I think) However, there is no way to go back and correct all of the videos I have my logo on. Enjoy going to my social media sites and have a little fun viewing my videos again and watch for the typo. In full disclosure, I did delete a few.
By the way, my friend Aaron, made me a new sign with the correct logo. In record time I might add! A big thanks to my friend Aaron May! Check it out the sign below.
The odd thing is, now I stare at the corrected version and it looks wrong. It’s not wrong. It’s just my paranoia.
I hope you got a little laugh out of this week’s post. My wife, kids and friends sure did! It was a good learning lesson for our boys about what to do if you make a mistake.
If you’re having a bad day because you made a big mistake, just re-read this post and remember, everyone makes mistakes. My recommendation is to not cover it up. Admit it, do what you can to correct it, and cry a little. Then laugh a little and move on. Oh yeah, and try hard not to make the same mistake again!
Please feel free to share this post with someone you love. It will make them feel good. That’s part of the reason for the post! It was good medicine for me also. Thanks for reading my post, as always! I appreciate your being here!
Enjoy this video of some other companies that have made typos. It made me feel a little better.
This post has been brought to you by the letter “r”.
By the way, I had my wife proofread this post. That way I would have someone to throw under the bus in case there is a typo. I added this last sentence after she proof read it. 🙂
Here are some other articles and videos I enjoyed recently! I hope you will also…
Important Housing Moments… – Housing Notes by Jonathan Miller
Why Do Appraisers Hit the Sales Price? – George Dell’s Valuemetrics Blog
May Newsletter – from Sports Car to Tractor – DW Slater Appraisal Blog
How to Prepare Your Home for Aging in Place – DW Slater Appraisal Blog
Green Valuations with Bryan Reynolds interviewing Mark Buhler – The Appraisal Update Podcast
Here are some articles I enjoyed related to Northeast Ohio
First Edgewater Street Festival celebrates all Cudell, Edgewater have to offer – Karin Connelly Rice – FreshWater Cleveland
The next step in making CLE a bike-friendly city is getting our seniors on two wheels – Jen Jones Donatelli – FreshWater Cleveland
Putting Northeast Ohio workers on the map: The road to employment begins with worker mobility – FreshWater Cleveland
An inside look at the 12 Learning Lab projects beautifying and inspiring Cleveland – Karin Connelly Rice – FreshWater Cleveland