Introduction
Introduction

Welcome to my blog! This blog will inform you on various roofing topics intermingled with entertaining personal stories about my life.  I am not looking to sell you anything in this blog, only to add value to your experience of engaging in roofing services. This post in particular is for anyone interested in learning more about me as a roofing professional and as a person. If that doesn’t sound like something you’re interested in, feel free to skip this post and find ones more relevant to you. 

Often times a consumer is overwhelmed with the process of attaining roofing services especially when their most valuable asset is being affected.  I do think it is important to be a thoughtful consumer and to do some basic research into the individual who takes the lead on their personal residence or their commercial building roof project. Please enjoy this blog and feel free to contact me directly on the contact page with any additional questions.

I had no idea what hail was when I entered this industry in early 2011.  I was born and raised in Las Vegas, NV which is a dry desert city for the most part.  Las Vegas experienced occasional floods but never to the extent that our home would be damaged.  When I sat in a restaurant on Colfax Avenue in Denver, CO one July afternoon I was mesmerized by  looking out the window and seeing thousands of rocks made of ice falling out of the sky.

I moved to Denver in the summer of 2009 mostly because I was tired of the heat. Once I finished college at The University of Arizona I ended up staying in Tucson for nine  years. I still can’t believe how I endured all of those sweltering hot summers. Part of the reason that I stayed in Tucson was because I was comfortable there. Tucson was familiar to me and most importantly I had a network of supportive people who cared about me.

While I was attending college I developed a severe drinking problem to the point that I needed to get help. I feel very lucky that I made it through that challenging time in my life, and it was only possible for me to overcome that hardship with the help of many good people who were also in recovery in Tucson. Being in Tucson made me feel safe. I made good friends while in recovery from alcoholism and I was very reluctant to leave that environment. I did end up leaving Tucson obviously and as of this post I am sixteen years in recovery from alcoholism.

Despite falling way behind in school, I did graduate from college and I even made the Dean’s List the last two semesters. I am now the proud holder of a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Philosophy. Getting a degree is of particular importance to me because I am the second person in my family to complete college. I also completed college while overcoming a severe drinking problem and emotional hardship.  

Looking back on that time I even surprise myself sometimes knowing that I actually got my degree. One of the most challenging parts of that time in my life was going to my professors and telling them that I had a drinking problem and that I was struggling to pass their class because I was so far behind.  Getting honest with them was a humbling experience and they simply laid out what I had to do to pass and they did not grant me any special treatment.  This time marked a new beginning in life for me of living in accordance of principles of honesty, openness, and being willing to change.  I don’t always live up to my ideals but I do strive for them each day.

After college I signed up as an Americorp Volunteer with a one year contract.  Americorp is similar to the Peace Corp and instead of sending you to distant place they send you to a local community that is experiencing economic and social challenges. I’ve always enjoyed helping people and I thought this would be a great opportunity to be a part of something good. I was assigned to work with a local social services agency in Tucson being an administrative assistant. Although the Americorp contract was low paying, the job was a blessing because I had applied and denied work as a public school teacher even after several interviews.  Also, my degree was in English Literature and Philosophy so jobs weren’t exactly plentiful for those kinds of majors back in 2003.

In the process of completing my contract the social services agency promoted me to being a Project Coordinator.  I coordinated a project teaching financial education to low income families in Hispanic neighborhoods.  I’ve always had ambitions of getting ahead financially and the topic of financial education appealed to me. I am fluent in Spanish and it came natural for me to teach classes in Spanish and manage the implementation of this program.  Both of my parents are from Mexico so I grew up speaking Spanish in my home.  I found the program to be rewarding and extremely educational on a personal level because I was learning things about financial education that were new and enlightening to me.  

I began to learn concrete strategies and realizing that I could reach my financial goals.   Reading books in my spare time about financial matters and success became a fun pastime to me. Part of the financial education program was to meet with a financial advisor.  I was fortunate to meet a nice woman who I sadly don’t have her name anymore. We had a pleasant meeting and she told me that she really could not help me because I unfortunately had no money to invest.  She told me that the best financial advice she could give me was to get into sales.

 When I asked her what kind of sales she said to get into any kind of sales because she could see clearly that I had the right personality for a career in sales and she believed that I could do well and perhaps have money to invest one day. I took her advice to heart and I began to read and study about a career in sales.

I had another mentor who was a real estate investor and when I discussed a career in sales with him he encouraged me to get into the mortgage business.  He assured me that if I could learn the mortgage business he would be my best customer. He needed mortgages often and he said would refer people to me as well.

I took his advice seriously and began reading and learning about mortgages.  I even got a part time job for a mortgage company being a loan officer.  During this time the mortgage industry had a lot of people entering the industry (similar to roofing now), and I was getting discouraged because I could not find a company or a person who I felt comfortable working with.  

I wanted to work with a company who shared my values of honesty and trust.  I also knew that I needed a good mentor because I knew very little about business and mortgages.

During this time I was networking a lot by going to various local events and I ended up meeting a successful mortgage broker in the Tucson area.  We got along very well and he was generous enough to introduce me to one of the partners of the mortgage company he worked for.  I ended up working for this partner and he taught me many lessons about sales and marketing.

I remember so clearly the last day at the social services agency and the first day at the mortgage company.  The last day at the agency we went to eat lunch at tiny taco shop and since we all made very low incomes we were fighting over who was going to pay the bill. The first day at the mortgage company the partner treated us to lunch in a private banquet room at the best steakhouse in Tucson so that I could meet the team.  That day I realized I had stumbled upon a huge opportunity.

One of the most important lessons I learned from my mentor at the mortgage company was the absolute importance of making your customer’s happiness the number one priority in your business.  He taught me that if I focussed on doing a fantastic job for the customer then success would naturally follow.  During this time I was getting preoccupied with commissions and percentages and I was losing sight of the most important goal in business: customer delight.

By working with this mentor and adopting his advice I ended up doing well in the mortgage business for only a couple of years until the great recession happened.  Once the mortgage industry went under I was left with few work options.  I went to work with a friend in Texas as a Halloween Store Manager which gave me some great experience with hiring and managing teams in a quick way as well as keeping track of waste and profitability.  After that job I was out of work for a few months until I bumped into a friend of mine who was a sales representative at a cell phone kiosk in the Tucson Mall.  I never thought in a million years that I would be selling phones in the mall but there I was selling phones in the mall.

I did my best to keep a positive attitude and with the help of friends who encouraged me to stick with it I ended up being the manager of the kiosk and building a small successful sales team.  The cell phone kiosk business model was known for high turnover and I was proud that my turnover was low mostly because I did my best to make the team feel like they mattered and were respected. I led that team until that kiosk was bought out by T-Mobile and most of us were let go.  T-Mobile did decided to bring me on board and I worked for them for another two years.  One of the main reasons that the hiring manager decided to keep me and let everyone else go was due to my ability to retain a successful sales team while other managers went through team after team.

I always knew that I wanted to leave the cell phone business and get into a sales job that I could have flexible hours and more time to enjoy hobbies and leisure. One great part of the mortgage business was being able to come and go as I pleased.  Once I moved to Denver I made friends and one of those friends mentioned that she sold roofing.  I had heard from someone else that roofing was a good business and I even met someone who owned their own roofing company.  I kept working as a cell phone salesman and never even gave a second thought to roofing.

I was able to save money and leave the cell phone business after a couple of years.  I jumped around a few times working in different fields from computer hardware to doing tax returns. I ended up with very little savings and unhappy with the results of jumping around looking for a good opportunity only to find another dead end.  While I was driving home from the tax preparation job I had a thought.  The thought was that maybe I should reach out to the acquaintance I knew who owned his own roofing company.  The only problem was t I didn’t have his phone number.  I chalked the thought up to think about another day and kept driving.

At the time I was an avid yoga practitioner and I decided to drive to a yoga class to help clear my mind from the stress of career problems. Sure enough, as I entered the door, I see my friend who owned the roofing company!  I couldn’t believe my eyes.  I had just been thinking about him on the drive to the studio and there he was checking into the same yoga class I was attending.  I spoke to him after the class about doing roofing sales and he was excited to have me come on board.  This was the beginning of my career as a roofing professional.