The Wood Whisperer

The Wood Whisperer
Look and listen to learn.

 Listen up budding business owners! Here is the perfect of example of how important market research can be, and how listening to your customers will make or break you.

11 year old Zane discovered MKC through his book club and decided to give it a go. Inspired by a product called “Mod Podge” which enables images to be transferred onto wood, he decided to have a go at creating a product similar to a baby photo his mum had kept. It was an image transferred onto a decorative piece of timber, which had become a treasured family ornament.

Zane decided to go with a Christmas theme for the November market. He created Christmas ornaments and tree decorations. His little sister, who was also keen to get in on the action, made little Christmas gift tags to compliment Zane’s products and sold them as a deal – 5 for .50c.


The items weren’t unique (there were several of the same) and the pricing was unrealistic at $5 per piece.  Only two items were sold, and Zane’s confidence and feelings were hurt.

He chatted with Lacey and reflected on the product he was offering, pricing, presentation, and the delivery of his customer service. He listened to Lacey’s feedback and was surprised to learn she had been paying particular attention to the chatter of people who visited his stall. Lacey noticed they had been enquiring about the display item (the baby photo his mum had bought along) and were excited by its uniqueness.


Zane lives on a bush block in Bullsbrook with unlimited access to suitable pieces of wood. He decided to give it another go and now takes orders for custom-made timber mounted photos.

Lessons learned, knowledge applied ……



Love from our teachers

"The program brought small business and financial management to the forefront of our students minds. It really opened their eyes to the ‘real world’ and that money does not just magically appear. It put things into perspective and their initiatives displayed at the Market stall day really showed the learning they gained from the program.
The Year 5 students are already talking about it!"

Melanie Buller, Principal SHHP 2019

"I was absolutely blown away by how successful the night was. The students did an amazing job and I am so proud of them. I haven’t done the final count, but I won’t be surprised if between them they have raised over $2000 in profit! And it’s not over! I have a meeting with our P&F representatives tomorrow to see if we can support them with their Christmas stall."

Suzie Alexander, Cannon Hill Anglican College 2019