Rising To The Challenge // Karrie Brock - Owner of FASTSIGNS Toledo

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Bryant Gillespie: Learn how to build
a better sign and print shop from a

few crusty sign guys who've made more
mistakes than they care to admit.

Conversations and advice on
pricing, sales, marketing,

workflow, growth, and more.

Your listening to The Better Sign Shop
podcast With your hosts, Peter COIs,

Michael O'Reilly, and Bryant Gillespie.

Before we jump into the episode,
I'd like to give a shout out to

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If you're interested in learning
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Alright guys, welcome to the next
edition of the Better Sign Shop podcast.

As always got my colleague and
co-host Peter the sign Shop Yoda.

Peter Kourounis: What's up?

What's up?

What's up?

What's up?

What's up?

Happy to be here, everybody.

I feel like I had to put a
little flare into it that time.


I feel like I'm like entering
into like a boxing ring or better

yet, like a wrestling ring.

Like, eh, what's going?

That's me.

That's me.


What's up?

What's up?

Bryant Gillespie: Are we gonna
start getting like some music going?

Peter Kourounis: No, I don't think so.

Bryant Gillespie: No.

What the folks come for?

Peter Kourounis: Nope.




Bryant Gillespie: Mike is absent today,
so we're gonna soldier on without 'em.

I'm really excited for today.

We've got a special guest.

Uh, we'll talk about that in a minute,
but let's catch up real quick, man.

How's, thanks.

Peter Kourounis: It's been good.

It's been good.

You know, um, I'm enjoying working with
a couple of sign shop owners, uh, helping

them navigate through their, their issues.

Uh, I'm learning a lot.

As a matter of fact, you
know, like there are.

There are things that are happening
in my sign shop, coaching, consulting,

coaching, whatever you wanna call it,
that I'm realizing that there are a

lot of owners out there that are, that
don't have answers to some, to some

of these like, real simple questions.

Like, what?

Yeah, well, you know, I wanna respect
everybody's privacy, but, you know, for

the, uh, these people won't be named.

But for the most part, you know,
like, how do you do rush charges?

You know, like, when should
you charge a rush charge?

And how much should you
charge on rush charges?

Uh, go.

Just thinking back, you know, like
employee handbook, employee manual, like,

what should, should not be included?

You know, should it be three pages long?

Should it be 30 pages long?

So, you know, there, there's some things
from on a, when you put on, when you

decide to be a business owner, when you
decide to be a sign shop business owner,

you are getting into a field where you
are gonna be wearing many different hats.

And not many of these people that
I'm working with understood that.

Like, they just think, ah, yeah, I was
the graphic designer of this other shop.

I decided to open up my own
place and now I'm going to be the

business owner and be the head hot.

The head chief, chief.

And it's like, yeah, well, you know,
when should you charge three and a half?

Should I be charging three and a half
percent on credit cards or should I not?

Should I be reducing that?

When should I charge a rush charge?

When should I charge my, like what
happens if it's my biggest client

and their, and their, uh, their
order comes in under the minimum?

Should I put it through at that price?

Should I put them through?

Should I subject them to my
minimum order requirement?

There's so many questions that are being
asked and I'm enjoying every little bit

of it because it keeps me on my toes.

But these things that yeah,
you know, naturally come.

Maybe some of us, you know, we,
we would know how to answer that.

We wouldn't have to ask that question.

But there are a lot of sign shop owners
out there that, you know, are listening

to this podcast and, you know, reaching
out to me and saying, Hey, you know,

what would you do in this situation?

And, and I'm loving
every little bit of it.

So that's, uh, that's really what's
going on with me these past few days.


Bryant Gillespie: Yeah.

I've seen some of these questions come up
in the community as well of, uh, like rush

charges and things like that, and there's
always, there's always some nuance to it.


Um, and maybe that's the part
that they're just struggling with.

Peter Kourounis: Yeah.


I mean, there's a big customer,
it's their biggest customer.

Do I risk upsetting that big customer?

And then on this one job, you
know, there's always ways to tiptoe

around certain situations and, and
being a, uh, sign shop coach, you

know, these people are excessive.

Very, I have made myself
very excessive to.

To these people.

Like they can accessible, uh, accessible.


Excessive, accessible,
excessive, no accessible.

I've made myself accessible to these
people, you know, that they're writing me,

uh, on our Slack channel and, you know,
it seems like I'm in their back pocket

the moment they have a situation arise.

They get, they pill out their phone and
they're, ah, what would you do here?

And I'm like, yeah.

All right.

I can answer that really quickly.

That's a quick, that's a quick
little answer, you know, and one of

the things that I've been getting
a lot of feedback on, uh, just to

kind of lead Wet your palate, wet
your beak here a little bit, is,


Bryant Gillespie: you know
I'm all about wetting my beak?

My man

Peter Kourounis: is this signed
business PDF that's in our,

uh, dine shop community, right?

Like it's under, it's one
of those free resources.


Yeah, right.

It's like 108 pages long.

But everybody that's read it,
they have hit me with the.

You have, you have

Pandora's Box.

Oh my God.


It's like, like everything connects
the moment they read this PDF and

I'm like, guys, I didn't write it.



I found it from some dude
many, many years ago.

I don't even know where he is anymore.

But, you know, we threw it up there.

We, it's a great, it, it made a
significant impact in my life and it's

making a significant impact in others'
lives as well, especially regarding

the sign rising area, you know?




Uh, we don't, we, this is a touchy topic
for almost every sign shop owner in

the, in the continental US is pricing.


Bryant Gillespie: I do, I would say the

Peter Kourounis: world this point.


You know what?


Australia, wherever these
people come from, pricing.

In this world of businesses, like we
could talk for days, not hours, days on,

on pricing and how to do it correctly.

But you read this PDF and a lot of
my clients are saying, oh my God.

Oh, it all makes sense.

Everything that I've thought,
everything that I've said, everything

that I've heard on this podcast, it's
like all the dots finally connected.

It's, it's like Tony Stark.

It's finally making an element
to make a brand new, you know,

self sustained electricity.

It's like that.


Haha, I've done it.

I've a time travel.

No, I've solved sign pricing.

Read the pdf.


Bryant Gillespie: you haven't.

I'm gonna have the editor just.

Chop in all the sound effects
and like some explosions

and stuff for this episode,

Peter Kourounis: right?

No, read the pdf, but the, the
clients that I've had, they are, uh,

they're absolutely taken back by it.

And, uh, yeah, that's, uh,
it's been really great to see.

I didn't write it.

I'm not the author, so don't give me the
accolades, but I'll take them anyway.


Bryant Gillespie: Excellent.

Well, man, yeah, I'm glad
you're excited about it.

I, I knew you wouldn't
stay retired for too long,

Peter Kourounis: so that's good.

I love the business, man.

I mean, there's what's not to
love about the sign shop industry.

In fact, I am really excited
about our guest here today.

First of all, it's a, it's a, she's
a fellow Sian signs franchisee.


I'm not, I'm no longer
a franchisee, but I.

I'm so happy to have a
franchise owner on this show.


Bryant Gillespie: I, I hate that
Mike's not gonna be here for this

one because he, you guys have always
gone at the, the fast science thing,

Peter Kourounis: but, well,
I'm go, I'm gonna ask her like,

one huge question for her.

I'm gonna ask her what the
million dollar question, right?

As soon as she jumps on here is,
does Fast Signs get a bad rap in

her, in her neck of the woods?

Does it get a bad rap?

And I wanna know, I wanna know,
because, you know, the industry

experts here, you know, we've
had TJ on here not too long ago.

We've had, you know, he said Fast Signs
is one of his biggest clients, right?

But they're fast signs, you know,
whatever the heck that means.

I don't know.

But they're fast signs.

Like people like say there's
Fast Signs Insam, and then

there's the real Sign shops.

I wanna know if she believes in that,
and we're gonna ask her here today.

Yeah, yeah.

Bryant Gillespie: Well, let me like
set the stage a little bit, right?

This is Women's History Month.

Yesterday was what?

International Women's Day.

Women's Day, yeah.

Women's Day.

And here we are, the day
later recording the podcast.

I, this won't go out for several weeks.

Uh, so I feel like we're a little
disorganized there, but, uh, extremely

happy to welcome our first female guest.

To give you some context.

Her name is Carrie Brock.

She is a fast signs franchisee.

They're one of the fast
signs that is, uh, here.

I, I'm, I'm being a little partial,
I'll say one of the fast signs.

There may be many that are actually
doing larger sign projects in-house.

Peter Kourounis: So, and if
I'm not mistaken, if I'm not

mistaken, she's in Toledo, right?

I believe so.

I believe so.

Toledo, and she has this.

Formula that she was able to crack.


And she's that we're gonna like,
dive into what that is here.

Like she, she has like a little bit of
like a secret sauce that worked for her.

If I'm not mistaken, I'm really
eager to hear all about that

Bryant Gillespie: national award-winning
sign and branding package winner.

Peter Kourounis: Wow.


we are in the presence of a
significant franchisee here.

All right.

I like it.


Bryant Gillespie: Yeah.

I don't, I don't know what the tears
were, but I, I would think that she's on

the, the top rung of the, the fast signs.

Did you guys have tears behind the scenes?


Peter Kourounis: there
like a No, no, no, no.

It was not.

Bryant Gillespie: I, I, I, I'm,
I'm pegging it as like a cult

Peter Kourounis: or something, you know?

You know, one thing that's really
interesting about, you know, having

been in this company, and I, I love all
the people there on the executive team,

and they do a really great job of, of
bringing in people in this franchise.

But, uh, I have ne I have never
met Carrie, and, and I've gone

to several of the conventions.

I, I, I think I've seen her, I think
I've, I do know of her, but we have

never been formally introduced and
there is no groupings, you know, fast

signs doesn't say like, here's the
elite and then here's the poor man.

You know, they don't do that.

They don't do that.

They put everybody, everybody's equal.

Everybody follows the same model.

Everybody follows the same simple
formula, but some people do it

at a little different scale.


I chose to do fabrication
and she does too.

But there are a significant
amount of franchisees in this

system that do not do fabrication.

They outsource this, they
utilize the fast signs.

Bryant Gillespie: Did you guys have
like a preferred, like in-network vendor

Peter Kourounis: for that type of
Yeah, that's what I was gonna say.

They, they use the preferred vendor
network that Fast Signs built out.

They have this really great system where
you could just like in the backend, like

click pipe in channel letters and then
the system tells you like, okay, these are

all the vendors that do channel letters.

So if you're looking for something
specific, they have a really great

ability to search by product and
locate a vendor that might be near

you or might be across the country,
but is the better priced vendor.

And then there's all these vendors
that have, you know, discounts

for fast signs and X, Y, Z.

So, you know, it's, uh, it's
a really great, they've built

a really great infrastructure.

I'm, I used, like I said, I
used to be a part of it, very

happy to have been a part of it.

But I'm always eager to hear what
somebody else has done in a, in

their journey as a franchisee.

And I'm, and I'm really eager to hear
what, you know, being, being a business

owner, being a woman, bus business owner
in this market, in her market, what

that's like, and I'm, I'm sure that our
listeners would like to know as well.



Bryant Gillespie: I think that's the angle
that I'm very interested in exploring

as, as well as the, the women in signage.

Like, you know, it's in our
tagline, the crusty sign guys.

But you know, it like, I feel like the
women that I've seen in our Facebook

community, and I, I'm gonna call out the
men here, like, I've seen the women asking

way better questions, uh, from a business
owner perspective than some of the men.

Really, and I, I'm, I'm
curious to I have, yeah.

And I'm curious to, I
wanna ask about that.

All right, guys.

So we are back with our guest, Carrie
Brock from Fast Signs in Toledo.

And what's the, what's the second office?

Carrie, I'm gonna pronounce it wrong.


Mommy, ma.



Close enough.

Close enough.

All right.

Well, super nice to have you and
welcome officially as our first

female guest on the podcast.

I have no idea how we made it to like
15 episodes without a female guest,

but we're super honored to have you.

Karrie Brock: Well, thank you.

I'm honored to be here and I know
because it's a male dominated

industry that's don't have as
many to pull from, but watch out.

We're out there.

Bryant Gillespie: I do.

You guys have showed up in force.

Are you ladies, I should say, I
have to be careful of my, my words.

You ladies have showed up in full
force in our community and it was

a very proud moment for us to,
to see that many people show up.

Of course, we were kind of
worried at first it was like,

who is spamming our community?

Because it, it, there's so many of
you that signed up in a single day,

we were like, this is not possible.

Peter Kourounis: Well,

Karrie Brock: it got posted in, um,
the wise group, so, which is all

women in signs and everything else.

And so that, that's kind
of where it came from.

But you guys have been
actually very gracious.

You know, sometimes it's not as easy
to talk to guys in the sign industry.

We, we don't always have a warm welcome,
so we appreciate that from your end too.

Peter Kourounis: Excellent.

Well, this has been, this
is a, a great moment for me.

I'm not the o I'm only Fast signs
franchisee any longer on the podcast,

so that's, I'm super excited.

Uh, how long have you been
with, uh, the franchise?

Karrie Brock: I have been with
the franchise for about 12 years.

We were a conversion.

Peter Kourounis: You were?

I was a, I was a conversion as well.

Nice, nice.


And what was the name of your
friend, uh, your company before that?

Signs and Designs.

What a standard Desi sign

Karrie Brock: shop name, right?

Pretty, pretty common.

Nothing fancy?

Peter Kourounis: No.

Nope, Nope.


I think I have a Signs and designs in my,
in on Long Island, somewhere around here.

Well, was there,

Bryant Gillespie: was there
any z at the end of it or No,

it was, oh no, just all Ss.


Karrie Brock: Just all ss.

Bryant Gillespie:
There's so many of those.

Peter Kourounis: Yes.

So you've been with
Fast Signs now 12 years.

Uh, and you have, did I
understand this right?

You have a couple of different locations?

Karrie Brock: Yep.

We have two locations.

They're only about 10 minutes apart.

Peter Kourounis: But walk
me through your journey.

How did you start and then did you
convert both of 'em at the same time?

Karrie Brock: Yep.

So we, uh, I actually started in
the industry in 97, my own shop.

I had worked at a vinyl shop in college.

I absolutely loved it, loved the
industry, and just went my way and

decided to open up my own place.

And about 14 years in
fast signs came knocking.

This was a new business model for them,
was to convert local mom and pops.

So I was like, okay, well prove to me why.

And they did.

And, and we really saw some good
benefits to joining the network.

So we signed on.

At that point, we only had the one
location and the other location we

opened about six or seven years ago.

Peter Kourounis: Okay.

So they, they approached you
and you said, tell me why.


I have the reasons I'll, I want
to hear what your reasons were.

Go ahead.

Karrie Brock: Well, I, I struggled with
that cuz they're all like, do your due

diligence, do your d But we were in the
beginning stages of their whole transition

of, you know, converting people.

So I didn't have a lot
of people to talk to.

And I remember calling up
Dan and Naomi Stutzman.

They were the first
conversion for our network.

Uh, and I talked to Dan for probably
45 minutes and at the end of the

call he told me, I for sure thought
you were not going to do it.


And, uh, so I'm like, well, surprise.

Um, but I think that we were, look, you
know, we were an average center size

when we signed up and I was looking for
something greater, something bigger.

And we have a good
network of people locally.

You know, one of my best friends own
a mom and pop shop down the street.

We absolutely get along and help each
other back and forth as much as we can.

But having that.

Nationwide network was a big pull for us.

Plus we wanted an outside salesperson.

They had an initiative for that.

We wanted, you know, the
marketing behind it so that I

didn't have to worry about that.

So there were some added benefits
on that scope that we thought

were, that made sense for us.

Peter Kourounis: Excellent, excellent.

And, well, I can't imagine what that
conversation was like many years ago,

but why don't you just go into it just
a minute if you could, and just tell me

what you see now today, looking back, what
those advantages are of being a franchisee

versus being an independent company.

Karrie Brock: Sure.

I mean, to be honest, I, somebody
asked me the other day, you

know, would you do it again?

I've said, yes.

I wish I would've done it sooner.

I wish I would've started as a franchise
because I feel like I, I learned so much

on my own and had to, you know, make my
own mistakes and trip through everything.

Even though I had the experience
through college, it was

more so the business aspect.

You know, I was the creative,
I was the graphic designer.

That's why I started it, and
now I'm like, oh my gosh, I

actually have to know my numbers.

I have to know why we're doing this.

I have to know how to bark things up.

I'm like, how does this work?

So I, I wish we would've
started it sooner.

Yeah, exactly.

Bryant Gillespie: Just talking
about the creative angle before,

uh, before you jumped on, it's like
serendipity almost, of like, Hey, hey.

You start out as a graphic designer and
then you, you wanna move up, there's

nowhere to go in in most shops, right?

What do you do?

You start your own shop.

And then the real challenge of of
actually managing and running the

business end of it kind of rears its head.

Karrie Brock: Yeah, and I
think you guys do a great job.

You know, I, we've, I've navigated
through your back end of your website

and helping people with those things that
they struggle with, that they don't maybe

have the support of a franchise network.

So, you know, it's, it's those
items that drove us to our decision.

And I, again, wish we
would've done it sooner, but

Peter Kourounis: Yeah.

But here we're not, you know,
it's I star, uh, my background.

I started a franchise, right?

Converted it over to Fast
Signs in 2019 or so, and.

Learning about what
their systems look like.

I realized just how advantageous
it would be for a small

business sign shop to come in.

And we were talking about
like the vendor network.

That was what we were talking about.

Just, uh, just a few minutes before
you jumped on here and talking about

how easy it is to like source a vendor
that can do something for you, say like

channel letters or stickers or, you
know, floor graphics, whatever, because

you couldn't do it, you know, yourself,
so you would tap into their network.

So when we've modeled the, what
we're doing here at the, at the, my

Better Sign Shop community is we're
trying to, we're not a franchise.

We're, we're definitely not looking
to be a franchise, but we are looking

to put that, those resources in
place that franchises get, right.

So while you know, you have fa uh, a whole
plethora of things as a franchisee, right.

These people that there are hundreds,
thousands of people across the country

that ha have no idea what you have acc
what we have had access to that have made

our lives so much easier as franchisees.

So, uh, a as part of like our
thought processes, what, how could

we build out some of this collateral
to make the journey of an average

sign shop owner that much easier?

So I appreciate you saying that.

That means a lot to us cuz
we've put a lot of thought and

effort into those resources.

Even something as simple
as like a job description.

You know, writing out how you should
write out a job description for hiring

a salesperson, a graphic designer, like
taking that resource, copying it and

pasting it into your Indeed account
just seems like too simple, right?

But the average sign shop
owner is going in here and

man, okay, what should I write?

What am I looking for?

I have to take time out of my
day and think about how I'm going

to sell my business to somebody.

So those resources are, are great.

Karrie Brock: Yeah.

And I.

Well, well think about two.

I'm sorry.

No, no, go ahead.

Uh, just think about it.

When, and you know, when we
started back in the day in 1997,

I had a plotter and a computer.


How simple could it be?

Now you've got latex versus solvent
versus eco solvent versus UV flatbed

versus, oh, hey, there's a cutter,
there's a, you know, a table.

I'm like, it, it's so
much more complicated.

I mean, it doesn't have to be that
complicated, but you know, it, it

can get overwhelming starting it.

And so having those resources, whether
it be through you guys or a franchise

or something to help navigate that, it,
it is huge I think in this day and age.

Bryant Gillespie: Yeah.

Looking back, like what would you
say is like the biggest, like if you

had to pinpoint here's the one single
benefit that we got that was the most

advantageous, what would you say it

Karrie Brock: is?

I think it was the education to get me
outta the day to day so that I don't.

Become the integral part of our business.

Now that changes and fluctuates,
obviously based on staffing.

That's true.

But, um, for the moment we
really haven't had that issue

in a while, except for recently.

But yeah, for the most part, learning
how to actually run my business and

free me up to do what I need to do
has been the number one instrumental

thing and, and has helped me like, grow
as a person, be a better, you know,

feel better about myself, feel like I
spend enough time with my family and,

and the shop and have that balance.


Bryant Gillespie: yeah, that's,
yeah, that's the most important

thing I think is having that balance.

Uh, I talk to you a lot of owners that are
get just getting ran over by their shop.

Like, Hey, we are spending 60
hours a week, and then I get

home exhausted, uh, only to come
back and do it again next week.

Karrie Brock: Yeah.

But then I look at it too,
like when Covid hit, right?

So here is, my husband works
in the business with me.

He's back of the shop, I'm front of the
shop and we have two kids and they're

school age and everything shuts down.

And I'm like, uh, how are we doing this?

You know, we gotta, we still
have to put food on the table.

So, you know, having, having something
where, okay, I can bring my kids

in, they can sit in the conference
room, or my daughter who at the time

was only like nine was answering the
phone, I'll get you to a salesperson.

And she transferred it to me just
to give that five minutes, right?


So like what you're teaching them
and the opportunities that you

have for even that kind of growth.

I mean, it, it, it is really huge.

As long as you can set
yourself up to do that.

When you mom and shop
started person in your.

How, how

Peter Kourounis: long,

Bryant Gillespie: when you began that
journey of transitioning out of that

role, how long did it take you to get to
a point where you were comfortable like

walking off and leaving the shop for
a couple days, or, you know, stepping

out of the day-to-day operations?

Karrie Brock: So I think that part, to me,
you know, it was probably easier back then

cause the business wasn't as complicated.


I remember we had, uh,
two college interns.

They were girls and they were V C T majors
and we brought 'em in, we trained them.

And I'm like, okay, you literally
had two weeks of training.

I'm leaving for three days.

Have fun.

I'll see you when I get back.

And they're like, ok.

But they did a great job.


It wasn't as complicated.

Now depending on the staffing we have, you
know, I still have anxiety and checking

emails and whatever from time to time.

But it's okay.

We've been able to take two weeks off as a
family walk away and it hasn't burnt down.

So, you know, we're good.

Peter Kourounis: That's excellent.

You know, I, it hasn't burned down.

We've had a couple of people on here that
have had their shops burn down, so I gotta


Bryant Gillespie: stories.

Yeah, it's.

Karrie Brock: Okay, well, love knocking

Bryant Gillespie: on wood.

Yeah, yeah, definitely.


Peter Kourounis: tell, tell
us and our listeners about

these awards that you've won.

Karrie Brock: Yeah, so
we're, we're very excited.

We, uh, in 2017 we won the project
of the year for Fast Signs with our

city ag project, so that was amazing.

Very excited about that.


Bryant Gillespie: That's you guys, us, me,

Peter Kourounis: yeah.

My store.

I love, that's such a great project.

Thank you.



So that

Karrie Brock: our ahead,
that is our pride and joy.


That's our, I mean, that's
our big accomplishment.

You know, just, just our sales
achievement awards and what we've been

able to accomplish as a team together.

And our outside sales girl
is absolutely phenomenal.

So she's, she's getting up there
too in her awards and recognition.

So we're, we're proud of ourselves.

Bryant Gillespie: Tell us
more about the City Ag Project

for us Fast signs outsiders.

Karrie Brock: Yeah.

Cause I, I apologize to fast
signs people if it's like beat

in your beating a, a dead horse.

But, um, so we have a client who
has used us for 20 plus years.

Um, they own an a restaurant concept
called Scramblers, which is a

dine-in, uh, sit down restaurant.

And we did all of their
marketing and advertising.

We even fine tuned their original logo.

And they've, they've gone through
transitions over the years of changing

their name and things like that.

And they were really set on
opening a fast casual concept.

And so once that finally came to
fruition, we're like, okay, well,

you know, what are you gonna call it?


He's like, no, you're, you're gonna
figure out what we're gonna call it.

I need a brand.

I need a name.

I need the concept.

Create the concept.

Okay, we can do this now.

My background is interior design.

That's what I went to school for.

So I'm like, okay, well we
can, we can handle that.

We got branding.

I can figure out the design part.

We're good.

So we did, we, we put together three
brand packages, different names,

different logos, and uh, even interior
boards of what it would look like,

exterior boards, what it would look like.

And I pitched it to him and he hated it.

He absolutely hated it because it didn't
have the original scramblers name in it.

And I was like, but it's a
totally different concept.

Like it's, it's, uh, you know, we have
a different demographic, we have a

different, the foods are kind of the same,
but they're not gonna be called the same.

So it took a minute to convince him,
but finally we got over the hump.

And so, uh, we like to say city was
hatched and we just, uh, installed

the third, third location a few ago.

So, yeah.

Peter Kourounis: That's amazing.

That's awesome.

I hadn't, I had no idea that that
was you coming into this, so that's

a little bit of a shocker to me.


Uh, Brian, just to let you know, okay.

Uh, give you a little bit of
background for our listeners here.

I'm only familiar with City Egg.

I'm all the way here in New York.

You're in Toledo and you know, you've
done this project and now pretty much,

I think every center that has opened
has like this sample in their lobby.

Like, I have a giant City Egg.

Like, this is what we can do for you.

It's like, yeah, you guys did that.

And we're like, yep.

We did, did fan signs, did
just not my signs, but,

Bryant Gillespie: and her
team, what you're telling me is

carrying her team or the model.

Of what we can do for you
in every single fast signs

Peter Kourounis: across country.

That's what that, that
explains my reaction.

She said, city Diego.

I'm like, you get the
heck at, congratulations.

That's awesome.

You got, that's such a great project.

And you said then they have now opened
up a couple of different, uh, locations.

Karrie Brock: Yeah, so there,
it, the initial one was in

Columbus, Ohio, and then we did
one in Toledo, downtown Toledo.

And then the third one was
in Bowling Green, which is

about 30 minutes away from us.

It's a college town and, uh, it
fits the demographic really well.

But yeah, we'll see how that goes.

I, I don't even know that they've
officially opened the doors yet

cause there was some hurdles
with, uh, permitting and whatnot.

But yeah, so the, it's exciting.

It's exciting that they're
growing that concept as well.

Peter Kourounis: Great, great, great.

Bryant Gillespie: I'm gonna, I'm gonna
play Mike here, Pete, just because

he's not on here, this, this is not
typically something I would associate

with fast science, so, correct.

Kinda gimme the backstory there.

Like what was it like, was
there like a transition process?

Had you guys done a lot of branding
work and like larger, I, you

know, like entire signed packages
and branding packages before?

Or was this kind of new.

Karrie Brock: Yeah, so I mean,
with scramblers we had, so we

had history with the client.

We did all of the, when, when
they rebranded to Scramblers,

because like I said, they renamed
themselves a couple times.

And, um, when they came up with
Scramblers, again, we did all kinds

of interior packaging, the exterior
signs, and put together their standards.

Like even though they might open, uh,
scramblers in another state, we won't

necessarily do the sign for them, but
they're getting our signed specs so that

they make it to what we have dictated.

So we already had that
relationship with the customer.

So I think that that's what helped.

But in the end, I mean, yes, we, we now
do quite a bit of architectural signage

and full sign packages before that.

I wouldn't say we put together a
whole piece for somebody, but have

we done all of those components
separately for different customers?


So it wasn't a new concept as far
as the pieces and parts, and I think

that's what people need to realize is
these large scale projects are really

taking one-offs of other things you've
done and just making it one job, which

in really is the best thing, right?

Because it's one customer,
one job, one focus.


Bryant Gillespie: Yeah.

I think the, the shift is like thinking
of it as more of like a consultant hat on.

Instead of like, Hey, I'm a
sign guy, or a signed woman.

Like, we're just making signs, you

Karrie Brock: know?

And yeah, so even the last City
Ag that we did, you know, I drove

out there and I took my designer
with me this time and we walked the

place and we helped break it out.

Like, okay, this is where you
should put your kiosk for ordering.

This is where your barista's gonna be.

Okay, well then we'll
move this to this place.

And so we kinda mapped out the floor
plan too, but I think that also

goes a little bit hand in hand,
like I said, with my background.

So not every sign company or even at,
you know, traditional sign companies

are gonna necessarily have that
advantage or be able to do that.

But as long as you can walk into a
space and say, Hey, I can really take

these walls and build something for
you that looks appealing, that's what

the customer really needs, right?

It's something to dress
up that atmosphere.

Peter Kourounis: Carrie, I
can't agree with you more.

I, I try to preach what you just
said in so many training sessions

and where I get the biggest pushback
from our listeners is how do you

get to be that authoritative figure?

You have, you have done everything
right with the city egg.

You have done everything right.

They would be a fool to ever
not listen to you going forward.

But here's the thing, you telling them
where to place their kiosks, and this

is like what you, you're now infusing
fat signs, Carrie Brock, you, your

company, your designer, everything into
their ecosystem, into their operation.

You are now no longer a sign maker, right?

You are a linchpin to their success.

So I don't know if you have an
answer, but I will ask nonetheless.


How does a sign shop get
there with a customer?

What do you do?

What were some of the things that you have
done to help make that journey happen?

Turn this customer into one
of your largest accounts.

So I

Karrie Brock: think the key is trust
and the relationship you have Now, I

will be honest, he's tried to fire me
a couple times and I said, go ahead.

Bryant Gillespie: You,

Karrie Brock: you just can't.

You cannot be afraid of losing that
customer, but you still have to.

Listen enough and be adamant
enough in, if you listen to me, I

promise I won't steer you wrong.

I have the suggestions that I
have for a reason, and here's why.

Back them up, you know, explain what the,
the purpose is for your decisions, but

have the confidence to know like, okay,
if they don't choose it, that's fine.

I will do whatever you want.

We will mock it up both ways, right?

Like, here's what you wanted,
here's what we suggest.

Those kinda simple things, even when
you're talking about smaller projects,

but you have to have some sort of
knowledge and education to back up

what you're saying because ultimately
they are buying on your knowledge.

And if you have the confidence
to show that it's easy, but,

but not overconfidence, right?

Like, no offense, but sometimes
men get a little egotistical.

I'm only saying that this is about women.

You know, you don't wanna
go in and bull them over.

You wanna impress them,
you wanna wow them.

And you wanna explain, I have reasonings.

Peter Kourounis: Okay, but
what do men do wrong here?

So sometimes I feel like you,
you, you can, you can be honest.

Like, tell me what, yeah.

What do you see men in business
doing wrong that maybe women

take a nicer route to doing?

Karrie Brock: Well, sometimes
I feel like the approach is a

little more, it's, it's direct.

And I can definitely be direct,
but I'm going to soften it.

I'm gonna be a little more PC,
or I'm going to have a little

more polished to what I'm saying.

Because I don't wanna, I'm
not trying to offend you.

I'm not trying to come across as
the, albeit knowing everything, but

I'm going to show that I do have
knowledge and education, which, you

know, that that's part of it, right?

Like part of it, instilling that trust
without offending them or without making

them feel like, Well, I gotta go with
him because he, he's strong arming me.

Like it's, it's my way or no way.

We've heard all the stories about how
competitors handle certain things and

you know, we take a different approach.

Sometimes we are non assuming we are more,
I'm gonna listen to you, I'm gonna sit

here, I'm gonna listen to all your needs.

I'm going to reiterate to you what
you just told me because I heard you.

I didn't just listen.

I heard you, and here's how I
can solve that problem for you.

Whereas sometimes, you know, think about
it too, men want to solve problems, but

half the time they've already decided
what they're gonna do because they know

Bryant Gillespie: laughing.

Cause you know, right.


She's exactly, you're describing
every conversation with my wife where

she complains to me about something.

I'm like, well, what do you want me to do?

Like, okay, I could do
this, I could do this.

Like, before she's even spit
the whole thing out, I'm already

like, okay, like how can I fix
this four months and move on?


Peter Kourounis: it's a hundred
percent correct as a, as a sign shop,

as a male sign shop owner, you know,
you're hit, you hit the hill right

on the head with that last statement.

It's like, yeah, I know what you need.

I already have my mind made up of what's
going to go well here and now my job

is convincing you of that solution.

Whereas, you know, maybe, maybe you
are taking a more softer approach.

Uh, maybe you're, you, like you said,
you are listening, not just to respond,

you're listening so that you can formulate
a much better thought, a lucid thought.

Um, yeah, men, men can be like that.

I know I am, so I, I'm not
gonna speak for all men, but I

I can definitely agree to that.

I'm gonna, and

Karrie Brock: I'm not saying it's all men.

Bryant Gillespie: Yeah.

I'm gonna generalize and say like,
tactful, and I heard Carrie say

relationship earlier in that same context.

I, I'll give you an example, Pete, like
a former boss that I had not so distant.


He and I would occasionally butt heads
on certain things, but there was a,

uh, an amazing female on our team
that could take the same argument

that I had and sway him to her side
in a way that I just, I could not

Karrie Brock: Very tactical.

Well think about it too.

We're so nurturing by nature
and not all women, right?

Like this is, we're doing very broad
generalizations, but we're more nurturing.

So I'm going to present
you with two options.

I'm gonna present you with this is
what you want, or this is what you

think you want, and this is what I
think you should have, and here's why.

Here's why I, I don't like
this option, and here's why I

think this option is better.

So it's just, it's being that open
to I will do what you want to do.

But I do think there's a different
option, whereas sometimes I think

guys come in with, Nope, this is it.

This is how we're doing it.

Sign on the line, gimme
your deposit, let's go.

I'm moving on to the next one.

And I'm like, okay.

You know,

Bryant Gillespie: I, I think you're,
you're accurate on a lot of counts.


Karrie Brock: never coming
back on this podcast again.


Bryant Gillespie: Uh, you're
speaking too much truth.

That's that's why we're, we're laughing
and, uh, getting red in the face because

I like, yeah, I can totally identify
with it, especially in my personal life.


Peter Kourounis: so like,

Karrie Brock: well, and trust me.


I told you I work with my husband, so
I still even have to do that with him.


Bryant Gillespie: to get him to
do a project that's inter Yeah.

I'm glad you brought that back up.

That was one of the things that I wanted
to ask about was like, what is it like

working with your husband on a day-to-day

Karrie Brock: basis?

Honestly, Most days it's great.

We, we get along very, very well.

You know, we, we definitely know
what the other needs to get their

stuff done, whether it's, you
know, in the business or at home.

And we lean on each other's
strengths and, and that's not

necessarily always the case.

And we, because we work in two
separate sections of the business,

I think really that helps.

You know, if we were both salespeople,
I don't know how well that would work

or if we were both production people.

I dunno how that would work.

But you know, there are times where
I do have to push a little bit, like,

okay, I know you're telling me this is
gonna take a while, but what's a while?

Like, I need a time, like I need
a deadline, I need some answers.

But yeah, for the most part
we get along pretty well and

we don't butt heads too much.

Although our younger, one of our younger
team members, he's in B with my husband.

And sometimes he'll be
listening and he'll be like,

Bryant Gillespie: ok, having a discussion.

Do you guys have like any type
of agreement that you like, Hey,

once we leave the shop, like
everything works, stops, or.


Karrie Brock: God, no.

We talk about a, you know, we
come home to dinner and the kids

are like, are you guys done yet?

I'm like, Nope.

Keep going.

Bryant Gillespie: I, I was just curious
because like, I look at my wife and

I as a, as a couple, we were great.

If we were like in business
together, it would, it like, would

totally not work just at all.

Karrie Brock: I, I realize we're a rarity.

I I do accept that.

Peter Kourounis: Well,


Bryant Gillespie: and we've
had other, you know, like I

can think of Chris and his wife

Peter Kourounis: Peter.


We've had, that's the
one that comes to mind.



We've had

Bryant Gillespie: several people that,
that work with their family that are,

have been successful on the podcast.

So I, I, you know, I don't
know if there's something there

that we should explore further.

Karrie Brock: I will say I used to, my dad
used to be in the business for a minute.

Everyone thinks, oh, your dad started it.

No, he, he was a fighter pilot,
had nothing to do with it.

Retired, needed a job.

So here we go.

But, um, he, uh, he and I would butt
heads way more than Randy and I,

Randy and I get along much better.

We're more even keeled.

We balance each other out.

But he and I, it was that whole dad or
dad dod daughter relationship where he

couldn't get past the, but I'm the dad.

I'm in charge.

I'm like, but I own more than you.

Let's, let's

Bryant Gillespie: about,
I'm the one helping you out.


Karrie Brock: Yeah.

Two-way street, but I
just took more percentage.

That's ok.

Bryant Gillespie: There you go.

There you go.

So what has been your experience
as a, just a, a woman in the sign

industry, kinda in general over
the last, you know, 20 years or so?

Karrie Brock: So I think it was, it
was a lot different back in the day,

and especially when my dad would
work with me, so he was also back of

the shop versus front of the shop.

And so I'd be waiting on a customer and
talking to them and he'd walk in the front

door to go do something and they're like,
oh, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

Start talking to him and
I'm like, He can't help you.

Like he can't answer your questions.

He, but they would just direct it cuz
they thought, oh, he he must own it.

He must know.

Um, and it was hard, I think in the
beginning because building that trust with

like contractors, we, we were in a plaza
with a bunch of plumbing and building

and all those kind of contractors and
so gaining their trust that, yeah, I, I

can put a sign together, you guys build
houses, but I can put a sign together.

It was a little more tricky back then.

I feel like lately, especially in the
last five years, it has definitely

shifted and I've seen more and more women
and connected with more and more women.

Like with the Wendy Graves in the
Wise Women and uh, even other fast

science owners have been fantastic.

We really have come together
to help support each other

and build each other up.

So it's been much different over the
last five years versus 26 years ago.

Peter Kourounis: Yes.

Carrie, what, what advice do you
have for other women in the industry?

Karrie Brock: I, I would tell them to
know their technical details because

we are very tech oriented, right?

As far as technicalities, um,
engineering, that kinda stuff.

So don't be afraid of that.

Learn as much as you can about that,
because that's where I see most of

the time where we get looked down upon
like, yeah, you might be able to do the

design work and you might make it look
pretty, but do you know how it functions?

So just know your stuff and
know how to back that up.

And educate, educate, educate

Peter Kourounis: yourself.


So how could we get more women interested
in or involved in the sign industry?

What would you think it would be a good
way for, for us in this platform and

any other platforms that are out there?

How, what would you suggest
would be a good way of.

Karrie Brock: You need a panelist?

That's a woman.


Yes, it's ok.


Bryant Gillespie: be intimidated.

Karrie Brock: Um, no, but seriously, I
think like, you know, just being open to

having the conversations and being willing
to listen to us and understand and, and

know too that we don't know everything.

Just you guys don't know everything.

We don't know everything.

But together we can
make it so much better.

And like you guys have already done,
just letting us speak and ask questions

and be a source or re ask for resources
in your group, that's even better.

And having that open, welcoming
forum, that's all we're looking

for because remember, we're the
ones wanting to connect and build

the relationships and all of that.

So we thrive on making sure that
we have good, solid resources.

And I would rather run to somebody
who has more knowledge and expertise

than I do, whether it's a man or
a woman, as long as I know that

it's an approachable situation.

Peter Kourounis: Do you have any
questions for us before we go?

Karrie Brock: I don't, I dunno.

I don't think so.

I feel like I know you guys, I
listen to all the podcasts, but I'm

like, you need more of them faster.

I'm like, every so many
weeks is killing me here.

Bryant Gillespie: I've got, I've got
one question that I, and I mentioned,

I was gonna ask this to Peter.

Like, ever since the, the Women in
Signs group joined our group, like

probably, I think there was a hundred
women that joined afterwards after

the first game, but I noticed that
the women were asking way better

questions as a business owner than
some of the, the men in the group were.

And I didn't know if there's, like, if
you had any hypothesis or, you know,

reason why that is or I was just curious.

Um, well,

Karrie Brock: I don't, I don't think so.

I think that we.

Maybe sometimes we see a bigger
picture and, and don't try to get

lost in the weeds, although, you
know, that depends on the person.

I can get lost in the weeds
on a project easily too.

But yeah, just always trying to,
you know, we're, we're trying to

juggle so many things that we need
to be as efficient as possible.

We need to have answers to
certain things so that we can

make a system and then move on.

You know, I think we're, we're
really good at making systems.

We have to juggle the house and juggle
the kids and juggle the business.

Um, so we're just trying to make it all
work and, you know, if you guys have

answers, we we're all for hearing up
because if we can make our lives easier

so we can, you know, not drop every ball
that we are carrying, that'd be great.

Peter Kourounis: So what's, what's
the, what's the future for you?

What's the future for your business?

What does that look like
next 3, 5, 10 years?

Karrie Brock: Yeah, so I, you know, I
wish I could tell you because if, if you

would've asked me 10 years ago, would
you be fabricating large electrical

signs, would you be doing this?

Would you, I would've said, no,
actually, my dad had those dreams

and I'm like, we're not doing that.

I am not doing that as we have a
wall paint booth now and everything.


Peter Kourounis: Actually,
actually, hold on.

I'm gonna ask you a different
question and I actually promised

our listeners I would definitely ask
here, so I, I almost forgot to ask.


Fair signs.

The network, when you take a look
at the collective, the macro of

all of the owners, the majority
of them do not fabricate, right?

The majority of them do not.

I did you do?

Why do you, why do you think that is?

Why do you think that Fast Sign says
to you, yeah, fabrication is not

necessarily a part of our desired
business model, but you can grow into it.

Why do you think that that is?

Karrie Brock: I think the
biggest reason is there's just

so many more complexities to it.

You know, to, to get up and running
as a print shop, vinyl shop,

that's a lot simpler process.

You know, when you start talking
about fabrication, there's a lot more

rules, regulations, you know, you're,
you're talking a lot of different

technicalities that not everyone
can handle, and it takes a skillset.

You know, I, I probably wouldn't
be doing it, but my husband

has a mechanics background.

He has welding certs.

Like, he kinda drove us into this.

Our clients drove us into it.

The market that we're in drove us into it.

So I think it's not as easy to
replicate, and there's a lot more

questions that come up with that.

So they might not be,
they are getting better.

We have a exterior fabrication group.

If you're not, you know, if
you wanna check that out.

But I think that it's a harder track
to the business to get up and running.

Do you

Peter Kourounis: enjoy that you fabricate
or would you ever think about going back?

Could you ever go backwards if
you can back to a final shop?


Karrie Brock: You know, some days I think,
oh my God, we were so much more profitable

when we were so much more simpler.

But it,

Bryant Gillespie: there's that question.

Cause final shops, you know, they preach

Peter Kourounis: interior decor,
interior decor, high profit margins.


We get into this, we get into this
business not as a fast signs, but as a

desired fine shop owner because we know
margins and vinyl are through the roof.


I hope our customers are not
listening to this, but yeah.

You know what I'm getting at?

Like, yeah, I know what you're
gonna make some good money.

We make some good money on design
and vinyl related products.

Everybody knows that.

But once you get into fabrication,
what I, what they also know

is the margins are lower.

So with margins being lower, but the
ticketed sales being higher, right?

One might argue, I mean, I'm not
one to argue this question, but I

have had people on the show say,
why would you ever get into that?

You know, what was the
reasoning behind it?

Uh, I don't have a mechanical background.

I had to learn on the job.

So learning how to use a C N C router,
learning how to use old laser, a

channel letter, you know, Accu, you
know, and all the machines that go

along with that, that comes with, okay,
I gotta, I'm going to school today

and I'm gonna learn this new machine.

But why do you go through that
when the margins are lower?

Karrie Brock: Well, and I think
you brought up a good point.

The margins might be lower percentage
wise, but the tickets are bigger.

So that does balance itself out.

I'm not gonna lie, I do feel like we
probably make more money now than we

did 20 years ago, but, you know, I
had a fast science owner in my board

group ask me the same thing, you know,
I know Carrie, that it's all fun and

creative and, and you like the, the
creativeness of it, but shouldn't you

just go back to the regular model?

And I'm like, no, because this is for one.

If you look at my whip, it's more
than 50% of our whip right now.

So no, I'm not gonna back
and cut our sales in half.

It's the challenge.

You know, I, we focus here in our
shop on solution-based thinking.

That is the number one thing that
everyone needs to come to the table with.

And we all enjoy that, and we really
care about making those brands stand

out and look different and unique.

And so that is the avenue where we
feel we get the most bang for our buck.


Peter Kourounis: so I'm gonna echo,
I'm gonna echo that same sentiment,

but I'm gonna just take it a
little bit, a little bit further.

See, the reason why I got into fabrication
was because I wanted the control of all of

those things that are in your head, right?

So if I needed to route something
dimensional letters, I knew that

I was gonna produce it and what my
capabilities were not, what a vendor's

capabilities were in having to,
you know, possibly go through that

procedure of going through, okay, let's,
let's, let's send them the mockup.

Let's wait for a quote.

Let's get this back.

Let's take a look at it.

Let's make sure they got it right.

If, if I can own that entire process
with my creative team, okay, we're

gonna make three layered dimensional,
H D U signs, paint some graphics, X,

Y, z, I actually know how to build
that with within my own resources.

So material cost, equipment, timing,
overhead, all that goes into that formula.

And that's why I decided to get into it.

Cause I can have 100% control
over the, the sale price, right?

And people might say to you, well,
Pete, I always have a hundred

percent control over the sale price.

If I'm outsourcing it, I
can control what I wanna do.

I'm like, wrong.

You don't, you don't control it
because that vendor has a price.

You know, the, the, that's that price
from that, that, that vendor, that that

supplier and you know, you have to live.

Outside of that, you have to
live with those margins being,

uh, taken up out of your pocket.

So if you can bring all of that into your
company, all of that equipment, maybe

extra labor, maybe extra square footage,
whatever the case may be, the goal for

me was, well, now I'm going to be able
to produce a channel letter product, or

a routed product, or a painted project,
whatever the case was, I'm gonna be

able to handle it inside my four walls.

And that's the reason why I did.


I, I, I like what you said.

I love what, no, excuse me.

I love what you said.

But you know, when fast signs looked
at my company, they said, well, you

know, we just don't do fabrication.

You know, it's just not our thing.

Not, it's not our thing.

You know, we have a
vendor network for that.

And I'm like, okay.

Well that was, that was the
biggest, uh, for me when deciding on

converting, that was the biggest like.

Stick point of contention, they're putting
a lot of emphasis on interior decor.

And I'm like, well, my mar you said
your market dictated your whip.

And I look at, I look at like, I've
done 18 channel letter jobs this month.

And I'm like, I I, I'm not
gonna throw that away, right?


I make more margin on vinyl, but
these, this is like 200, $300,000

worth of sales right here.

I'm, I'm, I'm not throwing that away.

So yeah, and for those of you
out there that don't know whip,

it means work in progress.

I, I knew what you meant when
you said that, but I'm not sure

if our listeners did, but Okay.

Go ahead.

Well, the

Karrie Brock: other thing too, I mean
you brought up really good points because

on one of your podcasts you guys talked
about outsourcing so much and I literally

was cringing and having like ticks
when you guys were talking about it.

I agree to an extent.

Like, I'm not gonna go run out and
get a sub machine, I'm not gonna

go print fabric, I'm not gonna
do certain things, but mm-hmm.

You, your story is exactly why we
bought our channel letter bender.

So for one, I, we weren't competitive with
one of the number one companies in town.

Like I could not win a set of
channel letters against them if we're

going head-to-head on price only.


So I'm like, okay, we've
gotta build 'em ourselves.

If they're building them themselves,
we've gotta build them ourselves.

2020 hits.

Cause I think we got it in 19, or right
before 2020 converted or changed over.

2020 hits.

Guess what?

There are no raceways.

The channel letter people
are 12 to 15 weeks out.

I knocked out a set of
channel letters in two weeks.

I'm like, haha, we got you.

Cause now we've got you on time.

Because they weren't building
their channel letters in house.

They were using the same vendor we were,
but they weren't marking it up as much.

They weren't marking it up at all.

So I'm like, okay, well now I'm, I'm
making money, more money because,

you know, it's, it's a little bit of
labor, but once the guys figured out

how to use it, that's the other thing.

These bigger projects,
they're bigger ticket items.

But think of how long it
takes to print a roll of vinyl

laminate it, cut it, process it.

That's a lot of labor intensiveness
where a set of channel letters we

can knock out in a couple days.

Not, not as much.

And one guy and one basic machine.

I mean, it, it's a, it's a game changer.

It really is.

But my husband was not on board with
that channel letter bender for years.

I was like, we need one, we need one.

He's like, Nope.

And then I won.

Peter Kourounis: Yeah.

I would say that you would've
definitely won that argument.

Uh, I can't, I can't side with
anybody that thinks that bending

letters manually is faster than
what I can put outta the machine.

Oh, he didn't

Karrie Brock: wanna do it at all.

He, he didn't wanna do it at all.

He didn't wanna do it at all.

Bryant Gillespie: I was like,
no, we're getting this machine.

Peter Kourounis: Oh, no, no, no, no.

You won that audio.



Bryant Gillespie: I'm gonna go on
record here, Carrie, and just suggest

your superpower is like rising to the
challenge and like figuring it out.

Is that, would that, would that,
I, it'd be close if you were there.

I'll take that.

I'll accept that

Karrie Brock: yourself.

I, I can accept that.


Bryant Gillespie: I've, that
come up several times and I,

I just wanted to call it out.

And that's, you know,
that's totally ao Okay.

Like, hey, when I started in the industry,
I was driven by a lot of those same things

of like, Hey, how is this sign made and
can we make something like that in-house?


And that drove me a, a lot of times
more than I care to admit where I

would be working long hours, just
trying to figure something out.

Uh, kind of the challenge of it.

And next up

Karrie Brock: is awnings,
but my husband still says no.

I'm like, I'm gonna win that one
too, but gimme, gimme a couple years.

Bryant Gillespie: Yeah.

So talk to us about the future.

We kind of bring this one to a close.

Like, what's the future for you?

What's the future for the shop?

We, we'll keep it really, you know, we

Karrie Brock: open-ended.


We continue to do what we do and I just,
you know, we'd like to bring in more

capabilities and more people and yeah.

I mean, doing the same thing we
always do and we just grow with

it and grow with our clients.

I, I don't know, however,
to sum that up any

Bryant Gillespie: better than that.

Any specific plans?

More locations, more
equipment, more capabilities?

Like what's the, what is, let me rephrase.

Like what's the endgame for you?

Karrie Brock: So, you know,
I'm approaching 50 and my

husband's already in his 50.

So, you know, we are thinking
about the downturn eventually,

you know, 10 years from now.

But, um, we, we built this building
we're in about four years ago

and we've already outgrown it.

It's about 6,500 square feet.

So we would like to build out a
separate fab shop and if we do that,

I will win the awning argument.

But if we, it'll be, you know, something
on the back lot so that we can just have

fab separated out from the rest of it.

Cause that's just the part that's growing
more and more, more intricate things.

You know, we've done LEDs and EMCs
and, and tall GA station signs, and

so I feel like we've stretched our
gamut pretty well as far as that goes.

But I, I really am open for whatever
comes our way and, you know, as long

as they're willing to accept the
challenge with me, but more people

Bryant Gillespie: and
we'll see what happens.



I love it.

Beautiful Pete.

Any other questions on the,
the fast signs side of things?

We all have, we beat that to death.

Are you, I think

Peter Kourounis: we, I think we
may have beaten that to death.

Uh, a little bit.

I mean, I, I I'm so excited.

Uh, we're, I was so excited
to have you on here, Carrie.

So, uh, we can geek out a little bit.

Um, did you, did you go to convention?

I did this past

Bryant Gillespie: the, I did.


Peter Kourounis: did?


Very nice.

Very nice.


How did you like, uh, Las Vegas?

Karrie Brock: Ugh, I hate Las Vegas.

Like everything's in Las Vegas this year.

I'm like, no, not going Isa.

I'm not going, no, not going any of that.


Once was enough.

I just not, not me.


Peter Kourounis: Well, thank you so
much for coming on board here and

talking with Brian and I I'm, I'm
so happy to have you and good luck

the rest of the way and City Egg.

Do not fire Harry Brock.

And that is never gonna happen.

Bryant Gillespie: Yeah.

Thanks guys.

It was fun.

Yeah, absolutely.

If, uh, anybody is interested in
learning more about Citi Egg Project

or your locations or connecting with
you, is there any place you'd like

them to reach out or you on Twitter?

They can email me.

LinkedIn, email?

Karrie Brock: Yeah.

Email's fine.

I'm like, not Twitter, TikTok.

Bryant Gillespie: My kids are
like complaining to me that I

need to get TikTok and I'm like,
uh, no, I, I'm not gonna do it.

Peter Kourounis: We

Karrie Brock: started a
TikTok channel for the shop.

There you go.

You, you can

Bryant Gillespie: check that out there.

There you go.


Karrie Brock: I don't have much to
do with it, but you can see some

of the creativity about our team.


Carrie, what's your store

Peter Kourounis: number?

5 84.

Okay, so everybody can get Carrie
at 5 5 80 [email protected].

5 84.

There you go.

At Fast signs.com.

Thank you so much Carrie.

Appreciate you jumping on.

Thanks guys.

Enjoy the rest of your week.

Thanks Gary.

You too.


Bryant Gillespie: All right.

If you liked this episode, make
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our website, better sign shop.com.

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Thanks for listening.

Creators and Guests

Rising To The Challenge // Karrie Brock - Owner of FASTSIGNS Toledo
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