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An Interview with a CD One Franchisee

Tell us about you.

I have been with the CD One organization since 2007. Before CD One, I worked in investment banking for over 20 years, as well as owning other businesses. I now own three CD One locations.

What inspired you to want to run your own business?

I am from a family where many are in business for themselves, so I saw small businesses being ran from the time I was born. I have always wanted to have that independence. When I walk into my stores, I feel an immense amount of pride.

Who are your role models?

To be honest, my team. It’s not always the easiest environment to work in depending on the seasons. Seeing them show up day in, day out means a lot to me. I appreciate all of them.

What drew you to the CD One Organization?

I used to be a customer of CD One and always liked the concept and I had initially inquired about the model and back then, it was not franchised yet. A few months later I came back and inquired again and was able to eventually purchase my first CD One location. And now it’s been almost 17 years.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a small business owner?

I think that in previous businesses I have ran, the lack of support was difficult. It’s hard to have a marketing department, accounting team, HR, etc. with a small business. That’s what I love about the CD One organization. We have a lot of corporate support. This has made it easy for us to grow into 3 stores.  I also get to stay connected to my team and my customers.

What has been the biggest success or triumph as a small business owner?

The biggest success for me is that pride of ownership and independence. Also, to be friends with the employees. Obviously, there’s an employer/employee relationship but I’ve known employees that work for us for over 10 years. We have one employee that’s been with us for 15 years, which is a huge thing.

What piece of advice would you give to entrepreneurs just starting out?

Be patient and to really take care of your team. Hire the right people.

What is your favorite moment is the CD One franchisee?

That would have to be when we moved the Downers Grove store. It was a whole team effort that required us to work overnight, bringing the garments all the way up to Libertyville to ensure our service wasn’t interrupted. We didn’t close for a single day. We were able to move our store to a better location and it was all due to our team working so hard to make it happen.

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