When Sharon McRill was laid off from her corporate job in 2003, she started a business running errands for busy professionals. Initially, she was doing a wide range of tasks from grocery shopping to organizing to pet care. But as the business evolved and her team grew, McRill realized that relocation management was their sweet spot. And now that she has niched down to a specialty, McRill’s business is ‘growing like crazy.’
McRill is the owner and president of The Betty Brigade, a business that helps busy professionals with moving, home staging, organizing and handyman services. McRill’s 10-member team of ‘Betties’ is committed to bringing peace and ease to organization and relocation, and their clients include individuals, realtors, trust officers and estate planners. McRill has been featured in a number of media outlets, including The Detroit Free Press, Crain’s Detroit Business and Forbes. The Betty Brigade was recently named one of the Ten Growing Companies to Watch by The Ann Arbor Business Review and honored as the 2014 Affiliate of the Year by the Ann Arbor Area Board of Realtors.
Today, McRill explains how getting laid off from her corporate job served as the impetus for starting The Betty Brigade. She describes how niching down to her team’s sweet spot in organizing and relocation management has led to significant growth. McRill also shares her insight around the psychological aspect of her work, discussing the case study of a woman whose relationships are strained because of her hoarding tendencies. Listen in for McRill’s advice on leveraging perseverance to build a financially viable business you believe in!
Key Interview Takeaways
Hone down to your sweet spot. In the beginning, McRill’s team performed a wide range of errands for busy professionals, but she found that their strength was in relocation management. Since she niched down to organizing and relocation services, her business has taken off.
It’s about the stuff, but it’s not about the stuff. In working with hundreds of hoarders over the years, McRill has learned that the psychological aspect of the issue is paramount. In fact, she requires that those clients be in therapy to work through their inability to let go.
Running a business is not for the faint of heart. McRill contends that every day brings new challenges and celebrations, and she credits her success to perseverance: If you really believe in what you’re doing, keep going and the reward will come.
Maintain change with new behavior. Once McRill’s team has finished a project, she encourages clients to develop new routines, like setting aside time once a week to put everything back where it belongs.
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