The Man Who Makes features in Yorkshire Times seasonal spotlight

The Man Who Makes features in Yorkshire Times seasonal spotlight

Steve McMann, founder of The Man Who Makes, recently featured in an exclusive Q&A for the p.ublished group of online newspapers. Here's the full write-up, if you didn't catch the original...


After a difficult time for many businesses during the pandemic, what was your primary objective at the start of the year?

My business was only formed in late 2021, so this year was all about establishing a name for myself. I know it can be a challenge for start-ups to make it, so I’ve concentrated on doing a good job, building my reputation, and encouraging people to think differently about bespoke furniture – especially when it’s made from reclaimed materials.


Looking back on 2022, what have been the 3 biggest highlights for The Man Who Makes?

  1. The complete fit out of Scriba PR’s new office space in Lindley. This was a commercial project delivered in a tight timescale, with some really unusual (but fantastic) furniture pieces.
  1. Demand for worktop restorations really took off - a service I never expected to offer, but it’s now one of my most popular.
  1. The build of a complex multi-apartment post-box unit for Heritage Exchange, built exactly to the client’s requirements.


And the most difficult challenge for your business?

The ever-rising price of materials makes it difficult to cost jobs at times, and remain competitive, while still making a profit. However, I pride myself on The Man Who Makes’ furniture being more affordable than mainstream, mass-produced items from high street names.


If you had to sum up 2022 in one word, which would you use?

Liberating. I left a job I’d had for 17 years to go it alone. It was terrifying, but the best decision I could have made.


What’s The Man Who Makes’ key goal for next year?

To have the time and space to create a range of standard products to sell, via my new website, alongside the bespoke pieces and reactive enquiries I book in.


Name another Yorkshire firm you hope will have an outstanding year in 2023…

Zapato - my local brewery. 


How do you think the regional business climate will fare overall?

There’s no denying that there’ll be some challenging times ahead, for organisations and their employees throughout the whole of the country. However, we have proven before that we’re a strong and resilient region, so we need to stay focused on our ‘can do’ attitude. 


It’s perhaps the first opportunity to celebrate a ‘real’ Christmas post-Covid – what will it look like for you?

Christmas Day will start at around 5am (if we’re lucky!). The house will be full of dolls and Lego, and our little cottage will be busy – as it’s our turn to make dinner this year. I just need to make the table to eat it off…


What’s the worst Christmas gift you’ve ever been given?

Dodgy CDs that my dad used to get from his ‘mate’.


Describe Christmas at your house, in three words

Barbie, unicorns, glitter (I have two girls under 4!).

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