Twice entrepreneur developing a concierge business
For Germaine Nunn, a client of Green Bay SCORE in Green Bay, owning a business is nothing new. His first business, a partnership, became difficult to continue when his partner moved.
“I was a partner of a beauty store in Green Bay, and our niche was selling beauty products for black culture,” Nunn said. “We saw the need for it and learned all about what it means to be an entrepreneur and the sweat equity that it entails. “
He also learned how to structure a business, manage inventory, price products, use a point of sale system, and sell. There were other lessons as well, such as obtaining a seller’s license, opening business accounts and obtaining financing.
The outlet closed when his partner left, and Nunn tried to move the business to online sales where the competition was fierce.
“When I was left alone, that’s when I first went to SCORE,” Nunn said. “My partner took care of the day-to-day accounting and transactions, and when I took on this role I needed some guidance. I had always imagined myself as a store owner and believed in the business. It was difficult to give it up. “
It was 2019, and although Nunn tried to run the business, he decided to move on to his next dream: to start a commercial and residential cleaning business.
He met a SCORE mentor again and is now working to build a successful business in a climate where it is very difficult to find employees. He’s in a booming industry, but since he tries to do everything himself while taking on other jobs, his hours are long.
“For me, I’ve always kept another job because I don’t like financial uncertainties and I need to be able to pay my family’s expenses for our house, our car, groceries and things like that. “Nunn said. “During the construction of the business, it is important.
So, for now, he’s moving forward as a solo contractor as his list of cleaning jobs grows. He is working on a business plan and has taken management courses at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay. The learning curve is steep; even the choice of a name proved difficult.
Nunn loved First Choice Janitorial & Cleaning because it echoed her first business, First Choice Beauty Supply. But he found out after the initial marketing that the name was already registered. To rename the company, he made sure to check the names registered in Wisconsin (www.wdfi.org) so he didn’t have the same problem.
The new name is Green Bay Conciergerie. Its motto is: “Do the job well. “
” Its very important. You can make your customers happy by doing it right the first time, ”said Nunn. “As simple as it sounds when selling a service, not all businesses are reliable. I run the business with integrity and honesty.
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The extent of the services will depend on the needs of the customers, and it has an extensive list of things offered, from deep cleaning to carpet cleaning and window washing. These are all areas in which he has worked for other companies and gained experience. At the moment, he works as a subcontractor, but he has big plans for growth.
He will be graduating from NWTC next year and plans to focus on what he has learned.
“I’m a visionary and a risk taker, but I’ve learned that this won’t get me where I need to be as an entrepreneur. That’s why I went to school, ”he said. “I needed to know how to run the business – how to register with the Ministry of Financial Institutions and the Ministry of Revenue and get it right. “
He has a store for his cleaning equipment and received a business grant to help cover his start-up expenses. The following year, his goal is to increase sales by 5% and hire one to three employees. It’s all part of the building process. He says he doesn’t mind being called a janitor because he lives and does what he believes in.
“I’m unlocking potential that I never thought I had,” Nunn said. “When you walk into a candy store as a kid you think maybe you could own a store someday. Being pushed and understanding the potential that you had from the start is the amazing part. To be able to think it and then make it happen and then learn from your failures I love this challenge it keeps me humble and willing to learn.
As he learns, he also wants to find time to volunteer with local youth groups and use his janitorial business platform to give young people a job where they can develop their skills. He believes that being an entrepreneur comes with the responsibility to give back.
But he’s in no rush to reach his final goals.
He has advice for other potential entrepreneurs: “Enjoy the process. Do not rush. As exciting as it can be to be an entrepreneur, remember that this is a process. Once you’ve committed, follow up consistently. Plus, integrity – it’s your brand – it tells a person who you are and shapes your character. Also be professional and don’t skip education.
Tina Dettman-Bielefeldt is part owner of DB Commercial Real Estate in Green Bay and former District Manager of SCORE, Wisconsin.