Steve Young: Customer Service First, Always
Steve is a veteran of the corporate jungle, having survived 30 years running a huge business unit for a large multi-national company. His successful business background has been instrumental in his smooth transition to becoming his own boss. Steve attributes that to a very simple formula – customer service first, always.
Recently, we spoke with him at a job site for him to share that formula, as well as what his life is like today as a Monster Tree Service franchise owner.
MTS: Steve, you had a lot of options when you stepped away from the corporate world. Why Monster Tree Service?
Steve Young: I really had no interest in running a “cookie cutter” franchise, with low margins, competing with same product stores on every corner. Monster Tree Service offered me the ability to own a unique service industry business, with huge upside potential, and be my own boss in an area I wanted to live.
When my business group was purchased 4 years ago, I could have stayed on as a consultant to the new owners, but I was more than ready for a change. I had been working 90-hour weeks, overseeing every aspect of the business, while supervising 1700 employees. I was always on a jet, heading to a different country, and away from home half of every month. Plus, you always have a boss, even at the highest rungs of the ladder, and that was becoming a huge stress point for me. I wanted something that was mine.
MTS: So, you became Monster Tree Service’s first franchise owner in August of 2013. What has been your experience so far?
SY: It has great! Founder and CEO Josh Skolnick gave me the confidence that Monster Tree Service was a business worth being a part of. The Monster Tree System offered me all the support I would ever need just getting the company off the ground. I was stunned at just how prepared they were with the groundwork to help me as the very first franchisee! It was like they had been doing this for years…because they had been!
I had an extensive, successful business background and resume, but knew nothing about the tree service industry, but Josh’s story really resonated with me. He had no background in tree service either, but was willing to put in the hours and the passion to make it work. He’s driven to be successful, like me.
MTS: What’s it like being your own boss?
SY: There’s still stress, but it’s more of a manageable stress. Yes, the business is mine, and it sinks or swims with me, but I have the control to make decisions on what we need to do to make my Monster Tree Service franchise even more successful. Plus, I’m outside, and not cooped up in an office or fighting over the arm rest in a jet!
I have the independence I craved, in a customer service oriented business. I am a “people person’ and enjoy dealing with prospects and customers every day.
MTS: So, what’s the “secret formula” to your success?
SY: It’s really no secret: just consistent customer service. You don’t have a business without happy clients, so that’s why we work hard to offer the best personal experience they can have, every step of the process, from the initial call, to the post job follow up interview.
One other point: hire the BEST people. There are the ones who are personable with the customers, know the business, and are committed to its success. They take pride in the skill sets we bring to a job, knowing Monster Tree Service is a high value, environmentally concerned professional business, and not just some “fly by night” group.
MTS: What do you see in your future?
SY: We have been very successful already with revenues of more than a million dollars this year. We are projecting revenues of $1.5M which will allow me to invest in adding more employees and equipment, and possibly look at territory expansion.
I really don’t see myself retiring, just maybe stepping away from the day to day operation at some point. There aren’t many corporate jobs out there offering that!
You, too, could be creating a healthier, more beautiful environment, with greater potential for personal growth and success as a Monster Tree Service franchise business owner, like Steve Young.
To find out more about the country’s first and fastest growing, professional tree service company, please go to www.monstertreefranchising.com for more details.