In this series, ActionCOACH Mary Ann Hauser (MAH) and team virtually sit down with business owners to learn how they are working through COVID-19. Check out their inspiring stories for tips on how to cope with and successfully recover from this pandemic as well as ideas on how to avoid making common mistakes. And be sure to look at special offers from these businesses – we can all use a little extra help right now!
BKN: Coach Beverly Kiser-Nutt
CS: Cole Stebbins, Branch Manager of Bath Fitter
BKN: What do you do, and for how long have you been doing it?
CS: I have lived in the Winston-Salem area my whole life. I worked at Lowes Home Improvement as the Operations Manager for ten years at their Hanes Mall Location. I then left in 2019 to start my current position as General Manager for Bath Fitter in Greensboro, NC. Bath Fitter has been in business for 37 years and was started by two brothers in Canada who had an issue with their old bathtub. They weren’t super handy but figured out the design for an acrylic overlay for tubs. They currently have 350 locations in USA and Canada, and are branching out to European markets.
BKN: Who is your best or target customer?
CS: Our best customers are Baby Boomers who are converting bathtubs or showers: people that need lower thresholds, easy in / easy out access, grab bars – or other adjustments in their homes to age in place. We also work with remodelers who are doing remodels for older people who want to remain in their own homes.
BKN: What has been the biggest impact of COVID-19 on your business?
CS: For our customer base, we realized they were at a higher risk and at first were putting projects off in the midst of COVID-19.
BKN: What are 1 or 2 actions you've taken because of the pandemic?
CS: We ended up shutting down for two months. After that, we invested in PPE, bought thermometers to check our employees, and starting have them complete questionnaires. We instituted a no touch policy – had our employees wear shoe covers, masks, gloves, use hand sanitizer – we did all we could do to make it safe for our customers to continue with projects. We invested money from trade show advertising into social media to promote our services.
BKN: What has been your biggest learning since you've been a business owner?
CS: I’ve learned the importance of being a people leader, leading a team, understanding personality traits, treating people the same and with kindness and understanding.
BKN: Any offers to include in the newsletter?
CS: Check out our website – up to $750 off or 48 months no interest financing
BKN: What is most inspiring to you today?
CS: My team has been the most inspiring. We had to close for two months, but all of our employees wanted to come back and work and be part of a team – and do whatever was needed to keep everyone safe.
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