When I bought a house a couple of years ago I got a neighbour with a nice job: he is a joiner. Actually, he is not just a joiner but a pretty good one. He can make everything his eyes see out of wood, from traditional sleighs to great book cabinets. But despite all his qualities there is a dark side lurking: his business is threatened by cheap products from other countries, youngsters don’t read anymore and global warming poses a danger for the market of pretty traditional sleighs. With his years of experience the good old joiner is a source of business wisdom and sense. In this article, I share five lessons we translators can learn from a craftsman that soon will see his business overcome by current industry trends.