To Be Profitable, Know What You Need


I like to write down about girls selecting unconventional careers. This can be a tremendous instance:

Valerie Stewart is the proprietor of Mr. Equipment of Littleton, Colorado. Mr. Equipment, a Neighborly firm, is a franchise offering skilled residential equipment repairs. Valerie’s mission as a Mr. Equipment franchise proprietor is, “To create encore experiences that prospects can’t wait to share with others.” As a franchise proprietor, Valerie has additionally served on Neighborly’s Company Franchise Advisory Committee and has participated as a member of assorted groups involving Mr. Equipment franchise house owners.

Previous to opening her Mr. Equipment enterprise in 2015, Valerie loved a profession in Human Sources and Operations. She held a number of strategic govt management positions in a wide range of industries, together with gaming, insurance coverage, industrial actual property and manufacturing. Valerie holds a bachelor’s diploma in enterprise administration and advertising from Adams State College and is a Colorado native.

I had the chance to interview Valerie not too long ago. Listed below are a number of the highlights of that interview:

Jill Griffin: Inform me about your skilled background main as much as once you determined to pursue enterprise possession by means of franchising.

Valerie Stewart: The majority of my profession was within the human assets area. I labored in company America primarily. More often than not I used to be in govt positions, finally. Twice, I used to be promoted into operations roles and I attribute that to the truth that as a human useful resource skilled, I actually immersed myself within the enterprise. I couldn’t do my job with individuals if I didn’t perceive how the enterprise ran, who our prospects have been and the way we have been attempting to satisfy their wants. I believe the management groups I labored with discovered that refreshing. Loads of HR individuals keep of their workplace and don’t get out.

Griffin: I couldn’t agree with you extra. Tradition constructing is what you’re doing in HR.

Stewart: Completely. And in case you don’t know the enterprise, you may’t do this. So, I had the chance to maneuver into operations roles, and I’ve labored for Samsonite in Manufacturing for 14 years. I labored in industrial actual property, and I’ve labored within the Insulation Trade. Consider it or not, my final gig was in gaming – I labored in a on line casino resort. My final two roles have been operations roles, and our corporations have been purchased out. You recognize what occurs to the executives when a brand new firm sweeps in – they introduced in all new individuals, and I discovered myself with no job.

 Griffin: Is that once you determined to look into franchising?

Stewart: I didn’t initially particularly select franchising. My husband and I talked. Our youngsters have been grown, he was retired, and we felt like we have been within the place to do what I’ve all the time dreamed of, which was beginning my very own enterprise. We checked out shopping for present companies outright and checked out a few different franchises as nicely. I noticed some on the market however didn’t notice they have been franchises on the time. Within the technique of taking a look at franchises, I heard about Mr. Equipment which is a Neighborly firm. That’s type of how I made that connection.

Griffin: Inform me about Neighborly. Is that type of an umbrella firm?

Stewart: Sure. Neighborly is kind of a big franchisor. The corporate at present has 28 totally different house service manufacturers beneath its umbrella. Every thing together with equipment restore with Mr. Equipment, portray with 5 Star Portray, housekeeping with Molly Maid – you’ve heard of Molly Maid – then manufacturers like Glass Physician and Mr. Rooter Plumbing and extra. Throughout the Neighborly household of manufacturers, we do nearly all the things {that a} home-owner may need.

Griffin: What companies do you supply at Mr. Equipment?

Stewart: We restore kitchen and laundry room home equipment. We do it in individuals’s properties and in addition companies. For instance, considered one of my prospects is a big engineering firm, they usually have 13 kitchens of their workplace. We handle their ice makers and their fridges and their dishwashers – that sort of factor.

Griffin: That’s very attention-grabbing and really sensible. All people wants their dishwasher working. Is the practicality of that what drew you to that franchise?

Stewart: Actually, that was a part of it. I felt like I wished to supply a service that might permit individuals to want me all year long. Even when there’s a recession occurring, individuals will doubtless nonetheless want their home equipment repaired. After I made the choice to buy my franchise, I used to be given a lot assist.    

Griffin: Are many of the franchisees male?

Stewart: I believe a variety of them are, however there are fairly a number of girls as nicely. Sure – many people, in actual fact, are girls.

Griffin: What recommendation would you could have for my readers – particularly in the event that they’re not too long ago out of a job, or maybe they’re sad with the place they’re and in search of an alternate? Give me three the reason why they need to take into consideration franchising.

Stewart: Effectively, I believe to begin with, in case you become involved with a franchise with Mr. Equipment and Neighborly, you’ll have numerous assist, coaching and steerage from previous successes that might actually assist you.

Secondly, benefit from what you realized in earlier jobs and former careers. There was a lot that I realized in company America that transferred over so superbly that I didn’t actually are available not figuring out something – I really got here in figuring out lots about the best way to run a enterprise. I simply wanted to transition these expertise to being the boss of all the things, whether or not it’s the funds, or hiring and firing, or setting insurance policies and procedures, or interacting with prospects. That made an enormous distinction when it comes to me having the ability to achieve success on this position.

The opposite factor I might say is – go for it! Don’t be afraid to make it occur. I’ve made errors and I’ve had challenges, however I’ve labored by means of all of them. If anybody ever asks me if I might do it once more, I say, “Completely, I solely I want I’d performed it 20 years in the past.”

Griffin: You talked about challenges. Give my readers some examples of some of your challenges.

Stewart: My largest concern once I first began was that I didn’t know something about repairing home equipment. I might run my very own, and that was concerning the extent of my data. Nevertheless, I used to be lucky and located a technician that knew what he was doing; he was well-seasoned. After which, I had Mr. Equipment, a Neighborly firm, which taught me all about the best way to run the enterprise aspect of this particular business. Plus, I knew the best way to run a enterprise from my earlier expertise, and different house owners have been obtainable for me to name. All of these items got here collectively and allowed me to achieve success, so my concern diminished over time.

Griffin: Every other recommendation you’ll give somebody that should make a profession change? Possibly not simply in franchising however on the whole?

Stewart: Ask your self “What do I actually need out of a brand new job, a brand new profession or perhaps my very own enterprise? What do I wish to be doing?” For me, I wished to assist individuals in some way. I wished to work Monday by means of Friday, not on the weekends. I had been in gaming; I had performed the weekends and the nights and the vacations. I received actually clear about that and clear about how a lot cash I wished to earn so as to assist a way of life that might fulfill our household wants. I might say, spend a while fascinated by what you need your future to seem like after which go after one thing that matches into that. I additionally took into consideration my very own talent set. What am I good at? I’m good at serving to individuals, growing individuals and guiding individuals. So, I wished to start out a enterprise the place I might do all of these issues, and the results of that’s nice job satisfaction.


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