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2024 Women in Signs: Megan Bradley

She entered the sign industry with no experience, and now helps others like her.

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Treat your customers well because they’ll treat you well.” — BRADLEY

Megan Bradley | Account representative, Sunshine Sign Co. (North Grafton, MA)

ALTHOUGH MEGAN BRADLEY’S education lies in science, she always regarded design and sales as her fields. After graduating from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2001 with a degree in natural sciences and horticulture, she found her first job in medical research, which she hated. She pivoted to designing garden installations, but the demand was limited in her Northeast area, so she started selling high-end lighting designs and concepts to restaurants and offices. She worked at an electrical distributor showroom for seven to eight years, and was soliciting Sunshine Sign Co. for signage when she saw the company hiring.

“I thought, ‘You know what? Change of pace!’” Bradley recalls of her entry into the sign industry. With no background in signage she had to acquire a panoply of new knowledge: construction materials, assembly, permitting, differences between every municipality — and patience. She started working very closely with architects and general contractors, which presented its own challenge in how to communicate with a variety of customers and demands. Now that she has worked in sales and design at Sunshine Sign for almost 13 years, Bradley is comfortable handling these roles that once posed obstacles to her.

TEAM EFFORT: Megan Bradley and Sunshine Sign recently worked on signs for the Cold Harbor Brewing Co. in Westborough, MA.

She is not alone in her initial lack of experience in the industry. Most of the sales representatives at Sunshine had no experience in signs whatsoever when they first joined the company, Bradley says. She has been training these employees in the computer systems and particulars of sales in signage, which she considers her biggest contribution.

Sunshine’s sales department includes two women, plus a couple of female project managers in the company as a whole, but Bradley finds it difficult to gauge the industry as a whole. “In terms of my competition in this general area, I think it’s mostly men,” she remarks.

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When she gets to work with a female project manager, the communication becomes easier for Bradley. “Just a camaraderie, if you will,” she says, whether the communication is internal or with customers. On a belief in empowered representatives, Bradley has fostered a sales culture where representatives act as “sign concierges” who can tailor the products and experiences to individual customer needs.

She enjoys working with her team and hopes to see more projects coming to fruition, as long as the company is kept to a high standard. She returned to her alma mater University of Massachusetts Amherst for one of her favorite Sunshine Sign projects, in which the shop designed, fabricated and installed four gateway signs for the campus plus two smaller versions at the roads leading to campus.

“If you do good work and you’re honest, you can’t go wrong with that,” Bradley says. “Honesty is the best policy. Treat your customers well because they’ll treat you well.”

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