Qualified Remodeler Magazine

JUL 2015

Qualified Remodeler helps independent remodeling firms to survive, become more professional and more profitable by providing must-have business information, namely best business practices, new product information and timely design ideas.

Issue link: https://qualifiedremodeler.epubxp.com/i/548106

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Page 18 of 59

When and how did you choose this career? I grew up around the home building industry with a general contractor for a mother and an archi- tect for a father. In spite of that, I pursued a degree in architecture. After practicing com- mercial architecture for a number of years, I decided that I had an entrepreneurial spirit that needed to be satisfed and a strong desire to work with individuals over corporations. How has the remodeling pro- fession changed since you've been involved? Technology has certainly become a big part of the process. Te way our customers have access to ideas and in- formation (both good and bad) changes the landscape signifcantly. Tat said, I think it only further emphasizes the importance of personal relationships and face-to-face com- munication. Just being in the same room now provides a leg up and the opportunity to leave a lasting and positive impression. Right now, what is your fo- cus as a remodeler — more growth or steady revenue at greater proftability? Revenue at a great proftabil- ity. Where quality of customers is more im- portant than quantity of customers or even quality of project. I've been known to say that great projects are a dime a dozen; it's the fan- tastic clients are what we really value. Where do you go to look for solutions and ideas for your business? As our customer base is largely made up of women (be honest men, do you re- ally care what tile is used for the backsplash?), I love to put my head together with fellow What does being part of NAHB mean to you? Joining the NAHB is joining a fraternity of like-minded peers. It's a brother/sisterhood of entrepre- neurs who have weathered the same storms as you and forged ahead. My colleagues celebrate with me and ofer assistance when I need it. It's an extended family. What have you done to grow your business during the cur- rent economy? I'm not sure we would need to do anything to grow our business in the current economy! Tat said, Lakeville remains focused on just a few things: 1) Setting and exceeding expectations with our custom- ers; 2) Providing an excellent product and experience. | women entrepreneurs. Tat way I am able to speak to my target market and business minds I respect, often with viewpoints I will share, at the same time. Finding qualifed labor is a challenge — are you hiring this year and how are you going about fnding the right people for your company? We are hiring. And it is a chal- lenge. Really, my approach thus far has been to talk to everyone. While I believe my future em- ployees are currently gainfully employed, they may very well not be happy in their current role and may be looking for a second family like Lakeville Homes. Most of our employees have been with Lakeville for 10+ years for a reason! What is your No. 1 source of leads right now and why is it working? I spent quite a bit of time net- working with design professionals during the economic downturn. We continue to have good relationships with them and ap - proach projects as a team. But I don't think we have any single source of projects at this point. Tey are coming equally as referrals from previous customers, design professionals, real estate and other strategic partners. Te common thread is they are referrals, however, vs. other methods of lead generation. What is the best advice you've received in your career? "Create a life/job you don't need to escape from." I love what I do, which makes it a joy to do what I do. Whether I love what I do because I am good at it or am good at what I do because I love it doesn't really matter. It's a win-win situation. Born for Remodeling Jamie Hsu of Lakeville Homes in Bellevue, Wash., is the July NAHB Remodeler of the Month By Laurie Banyay JAMIE HSU, CAPS, GCR Lakeville Homes Bellevue, Wash. Lakevillehomes.com TITLE: President YEAR FOUNDED: 1985 (30-year Anniversary!) NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: 9 PROFITS: NAHB Remodeler of the Month Hsu followed in her father's footsteps and became an architect, eventually taking over Lakeville Homes, started by her mother. QualifiedRemodeler.com | ForResidentialPros.com QR July 2015 19

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