As the summer wraps up, I will highlight some of my high points, and some of my low points of my season with Student Works.
Cold Calling is extremely tedious. In the pre-season I was cold calling 8 – 12 hours per week. I did my best to find as many young people looking to make a few extra bucks to come with me as I could. Going alone in the winter is extremely tough. That being said, I booked over 50% of my work in the pre-season with the majority of those jobs coming from Cold Calling.
Once production hit, I completely stopped Cold Calling all together. This is something I would go back and change if I could… Even though my DM told me every single day to go and do it, I lacked on that. I lacked so much on Cold Calling, I came to a point in July where I was out of work… do NOT stop cold calling. From the beginning, I wish I would have had my painters out once or twice a week after painting to start the habit of going.
Money Letters work… use them!
One thing about Student Works that I absolutely loved, was the incredible support I received from my DM. I could call him at any time of day with any type of question, and he’d be so willing to help answer it. If he didn’t have the answer, he would refer me to someone who would.
More support came from other franchisees. I am so glad I made friends with the franchisees near by. They supported me in many ways. through ranting phone calls, lending equipment, and on more than one occasion, helping me physically paint to get a job done on time.
There is absolutely NO lack of support with Student Works.
Good Days and Bad Days:
Everyone will tell you “May is hard”. BELIEVE THEM. I didn’t. I thought “No way… I can get through it.. those things wont happen to me…”. They did. May was hard. Very hard. I did a lot of recruiting throughout May because I didn’t hire the right painters in the spring. I didn’t know what made a good painter. I had never painted before! Ask for advice. Do not just hire people because they are super nice. As the summer went on the days got easier. Sometimes I would sit at home watching re-runs of Friends while my painters were at a jobsite doing incredible work! I probably should have been marketing during those times looking back on it ;). There will be days when you just want to cry, but then the days where you succeed at everything, and everyone is happy come, and you just kind of forget about the bad days. It’s an emotional roller coaster for sure.
What I Learned:
I learned to follow the systems. Some systems I lacked at, and I wish I would have followed more. Being organized is a HUGE bonus. I lacked in that a lot and would sometimes find myself stressing out over a misplaced cheque. Your painters can make you, or break you. Don’t hang on to a terrible painter, just because they are super nice. They will cost you a lot of money. Trust your DM. They have a super weird amount of knowledge that you wouldn’t even think they’d know.
I am glad I went through this roller coaster of a summer. I know looking forward there are many things I would change and I know I would be more successful. I learned a ton of valuable skills that will easily transfer over into real world life skills.