Todd Harris never believed being laid off could happen to him. But it did. Twice, within a year. His lucrative sales job in business development for the tech industry was gone, so now what could he do? Todd was determined to take control of his own professional life, but doing what?
Fortunately, he connected with Dan Prendergast, an alternative career coach with The Entrepreneur’s Source®, North America’s leading career transition coaching franchise. Dan helped him realize not only were his best days still ahead, but provided the guidance to becoming a business owner with Restoration 1, a quick response emergency fire, water, and mold restoration company.
“Todd embraced our coaching methodology from the beginning,” said Prendergast. “He was extremely coachable, and like many of the clients I work with, possessed an excellent transferable skill set for franchise business ownership. He did a thorough job validating the Restoration-1 business model and made his choice based on facts we gathered, and not on perception.”
We caught up with Todd recently to find out more about how he made the move from employment to empowerment, with the help of TES.
Q: Tell us a little bit of the “Todd Harris Story”. Where are you from originally?
Todd Harris: I am from Houston originally, and went to school at North Texas State University, north of Dallas. Hall of Famer, “Mean Joe” Greene is an alum, as well as Dr. Phil, Don Henley of The Eagles, and “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, to name a few.
I met my wife there, and we moved to Raleigh, NC after college, when I went to work for a large, multi-national technology firm. We loved the fact we were close to the mountains, or the beach in a gorgeous state. Plus, sweet tea seemed to flow from the water taps!
Q: What was your work experience with the technology firm?
TH: I started in inside sales as an account manager, selling the company’s hardware products to clients, but eventually transitioned into business development, moving to Portland, OR to take a position there. We worked in Portland for 8 years, before returning to Raleigh, for another 5 years with the company.
Q: But this time, the homecoming wasn’t so sweet?
TH: Not at all. I got laid off in 2014. I was stunned. I truly believed my position was immune to layoffs, but turned out I was wrong.
I hooked up with a smaller firm, doing basically the same thing, but the rug was pulled out from under me again in 2015! Being laid off twice within a year is devastating, but it forced me to start exploring other opportunities. I wanted to find something where I didn’t have to worry about corporate downsizing decisions affecting my family and me, or being aged out of a position, or concerns about ownership changes. It was time for me to take ownership of my future.
Q: How did you meet Dan Prendergast, your TES career alternative coach?
TH: Dan was referred to me by a successful former client of his. We started with some informal meetings, where he asked me about my Income, Lifestyle, Wealth and Equity (I.L.W.E.) goals. We proceeded to have more intense talks where we really narrowed down my options for business ownership. I really felt like a home service business was the way to go. I had no desire to keep up with product inventory, or a “brick and mortar” store.
Q: What did Dan do for you to help you realize your goal?
TH: He was invaluable from the start, providing me unbiased information and discovery , setting up validations with franchisors, and challenging me to think through every step of the journey He only presented me with business options which suited the goals we had discussed, and never tried to push me toward a particular business. In the end, I chose Restoration 1, because it fit my goals as a service industry, I could help others and re-use assets with what is, in concept, a recession-proof business.
Q: Why did you place so much trust in Dan?
TH: Because he had been through a similar experience, making the leap himself into a second career with TES. He “walked the talk”, and could pull from his own experiences to help me avoid pitfalls. He even showed me how to finance my new business, using the same methods he had done. That was a HUGE help!
Q: Why did you choose Restoration 1?
TH: I really liked the thought of helping people when they were in crisis, whether it’s a flooded basement, or devastating fire.
Restoration 1 has an excellent reputation, the entry cost was low, and it’s a business I can grow at my pace, doing the work myself until I can hire employees to help. Eventually, I’d really like to bring my adult sons into the business, and sell to them, when the time is right. I certainly couldn’t do that if I was still in the corporate world.
Q: How’s business so far?
TH: I named my business Restoration 1-Durham-Greensboro, and we have been busy from the jump! We are having lots of activity every day. I feel perfectly comfortable in the role of business owner, and have more confidence in my future than I ever did when I was working in tech sales.
If you’re ready to take that next step, like Todd, to becoming empowered, and not just employed, while really defining your Income, Lifestyle, Wealth and Income(I,L,W,E) goals, The Entrepreneur’s Source® wants to talk with you.
Just click on this link www.franchisematch.com to get started.