Business ownership is never a linear path. Especially when starting a family company, balancing early business tasks with full-time jobs, kids, and all the other aspects of life can be a long step on the way to stability and growth.
For Helen and Dwight Holloway, owners of Champion Pest and Termite Control, that step took three years.
They launched in 2008, after Helen got a call at work from Dwight, who said, “Hey, can you make me a contract for tomorrow? I just got my first customer.”
Helen was still working in the banking industry, a 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. commitment. She’d get home, have family time, and use the few hours she had after her daughter went to bed to work on Champion.
Since their start, Champion Pest and Termite Control has helped 2,500 families eradicate things with too many legs from their homes. Currently, they have around 1,000 clients. And, to add to their success, Champion was recently awarded a contract with Columbus City Schools.
Through it all, Helen said they’ve intentionally maintained a culture that educates Champion employees and supports their clients. Each of their technicians are licensed through the state, which isn’t required, but “provides you with some information that working without [a license] may not,” Helen said.
Staying consistent with that culture, Helen and Dwight have sought employees who can easily align with it. They’ve hired and parted ways with individuals over the last nine years, and now their business “really feels like a comprehensive team.” Starting as just Helen and Dwight, Champion now has four trucks on the road, and two administrative assistants in the office.
As they look to expand into more territory, Helen turned to YMT Consultants’ Entrepreneur Exchange program, funded by SBA ScaleUp America. For her, the program has offered a structured way to refocus and reprioritize.
As with most businesses just starting off, Helen did a lot of the grunt work while simultaneously trying to grow Champion. Over the years she’s found ways to delegate that work and focus on her strengths and business operations while Dwight directs sales. But, the program “continues to help me understand, ‘How do I make sure I have the right people in the right places.'”
Going to each class has also allowed Helen to create a network of fellow small business owners that share struggles and offer advice.
“Two of my closest friends at ScaleUp are other business owners who run businesses with their husbands,” Helen said. “That’s something that you can’t just go out and look for.”
Ultimately, though, the program has allowed Helen to measure the value of her time in dollars and define success in calculable terms.
“Sometimes you look up, and it’s 4-o-clock, your day’s gotten away from you, and, you know, how do you know what kind of success you’ve had?” Helen said. “It really holds you accountable to creating some metrics to identify your success.”
Helen and Dwight are in the process of broadening their client radius, but as their business is naturally a seasonal one, they won’t see the results until the first of the year.
For more information, visit championpestandtermite.com.
To take the next step in scaling up your business, visit YourManagementTeam.com/EE to apply and learn more about the Entrepreneur Exchange Program, funded by SBA ScaleUp America.
YMT Consultants is a microbusiness consulting and training firm providing monthly consulting and business development. We help microbusiness owners change their mindset, resulting in greater control of their business, increased revenue and bottom-line, and a strategic growth plan to achieve their “big-picture” vision for them and their business.