Original article written by Hawke's Bay Today. You can view HERE.
A small Hastings business went from one man making predator traps to a team of six building furniture aimed at people who found themselves suddenly working from home.
Callum Mcdonald, the founder of Good Wood, left an engineering firm where he was doing electronics work and started looking for opportunities that he could relate to.
The young Hawke's Bay local said the idea behind Good Wood came from his family, who are wildlife orientated and love all things native.
"For me to make a living by helping our native manu was a really natural start for Good Wood."
Towards the end of 2019 Mcdonald started single-handedly making predator traps and sending them to conservation groups across New Zealand, creating Good Wood.
It seemed that just as the entrepreneur had got the building and selling of the traps up and running, Covid-19 struck New Zealand, hitting small businesses hard.
"The first Covid lockdown had me staring at a wall thinking, 'well we had a good run', but then my flatmate Katie Nimon needed a desk, and I said 'I can make you one'," Mcdonald said.
After designing a desk for his flatmate, Mcdonald took to Instagram to show off the design.
"The next day people started asking to buy them and I was able to pay the bills.
"The online shop started as a tiny afterthought. I just listed some designs and during Covid we got so much traction it really bolstered our business and got us through a few quiet months."
Once the number of orders started picking up Mcdonald found that he could no longer manage alone.
At first, he found it challenging to find the right staff, but Mcdonald found that working as a team toward a common goal is a great way to unite people.
"I am extremely lucky to be able to work with like-minded individuals who are keen to grow themselves and the business," he said.
Good Wood likes to support locals as much as possible, buying wood and tools from places like TUMU ITM and Mitre10, screws and fasteners from ECKO Fasteners and getting engineering done at QC Engineering in Ahuriri.
"Without such great suppliers, I don't think we would be where we are today, and they get us product quickly, and they have excellent communication," Mcdonald said.
Along with local businesses' support, Good Wood has had an outpouring of support from the community.
Mcdonald said, "We get so much positive feedback it can actually be overwhelming but it's great and we love it."
Good Wood appreciates all feedback, even the negative feedback, as it can help improve the quality of their products.
"We plan to be around for a long time so every little improvement will add up to huge improvements over the life of the product."
Well done it’s so great to hear someone succeeding in these hard times