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I was a few years outside of college and I was wearing a tie every day to work. I had an excellent job in sales with one of the top moving companies in the Washington DC area. I had a company car and a relatively flexible schedule. I enjoyed who I was working with and I took pride in what I was doing. The CEO of my company was a self-made millionaire and a brilliant business man. I had almost unlimited access to him, which was uncommon for somebody in my position.
Earning an entry level salary, I lived comfortably with my three roommates in our luxury townhome in Herndon. Our rent was low and I had some spending money each week, which I successfully burned through each weekend. I had stress typical of any full time professional, but my work-personal life balance was relatively healthy.
Still, there was a void in my life… or at least in my career.
I just wasn’t sure what was missing. Eventually, I began to figure it out, when I started realizing one common concern that each of my clients shared. It seemed as though they all had items in their homes that they were not interested in moving to their new home. In some cases, it was a ratty old appliance or a worn out sofa, but in other instances, it was a whole basement, attic or garage worth of miscellaneous “junk.”
I had heard that such a service existed that would come into your home and remove your unwanted items for a fee, but I didn’t know the first thing about how it worked. So as any responsible sales consultant would do, I decided to reach out to a few of them, if nothing else, to find how they operated so I could confidently refer them to my clients that were moving. The idea was to sit down over coffee so that I could get face to face with a decision maker and then he or she would be my go to person when I was in my clients’ home and I recognized the need for junk hauling services. I got on the phone and started cold calling.
I quickly started to realize something about my now competition. Of the four companies I called, only two of them answered the phone (the others never called back). Both of them had little to no interest in sitting down with me, let alone chatting with me over the phone. The way I saw it, there was one of two reasons for this: 1) They were so busy building their junk empires, that they didn’t have the time to be bothered by another potential referral source, or 2) They were completely blind to the fact that I, a moving consultant, would be somebody who was capable of referring them business.
Either way, I saw an opportunity. That day, I began writing a business plan. I was determined to flip the junk removal industry upside down (atleast locally), by creating a more honorable customer centric business with a company that emphasized the donation process to no end! I had my work cut out for me!
Related: How I Became a Junk Man (Part 2)
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