Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Small Business Success Story

I think there is too much focus on negative news stories so I am going to focus on the positive. Since I am a card carrying member of the glass is half full team (figuratively speaking of course), I thought I would share a small business success story. This story is about my older brother, and how he built a local storage company from the ground up, but first let's clear up one thing. Yes, this photo is of my brother with his family at a #Texans football game (the one they won to get into the playoffs, we won't go into the Texans losing since we are all still disappointed about that) and yes they had a great time; but a customer gave those tickets to him and that is how he was lucky enough to be there that day.  So way back in 1999, my brother was running his other company, Yardmasters, Inc. out of an extra bedroom in our parents home and needed more space for his day to day operations, that coupled with the fact that all of his company's lawn equipment was stolen out of the pole barn on the back of the property twice (thieves suck!) had him looking for land to buy so he could build an office with a shop attached. Randy found the perfect location next to an Allied Cement plant on Telge Rd. The land was close to 6 acres and had a good amount of frontage so he scraped together every penny he had for a down payment so he could buy it. Well, I can tell you just about everything that could go wrong with the land clearing did go wrong and it was pretty frustrating at times but perseverance is key. Further, Randy got it into his head that he would offer people a service that was in desperate need; boat storage (not sure how Randy actually came up with that as he doesn't even own a boat). Most neighborhoods in Cypress are managed by Homeowner Associations that do not allow boats to be stored in driveways, Randy believed there was a high demand for boat storage that he could fulfill. Slowly, the office and shop were built along with 30 (that's right 30) brand spanking new storage units and a new company was born in 2001, Cypress Creek Storage. (Randy graduated from Cy-Fair High School, #GoBobcats, but the Cy-Fair Storage name was already taken so he took the next best choice, this was before Cy-Woods was even thought of.) So, what happened to those 30 storage units? Customers rented them all. So he built a few more, then more customers came and rented those, too. On and on this went until 15 years later in 2016, Cypress Creek Storage has over 450 (yes, 450!) storage units of all sorts and sizes. I made that sound really easy, but you should know that nothing in life is easy and it took hard work (seven days a week hard work), great customer service (that's all me), and sacrificing time spent with family to make it happen. You may wonder how many people store boats in those storage units, since that was the original idea. The answer? Less than 5%. So even though Randy failed at the whole boat storage, he succeeded in general self storage. The importance of successful small business ventures like my brother's is that it helps our community in many ways such as: paying (lots and lots of) taxes (which in turn pays for schools, emergency services, new streets, etc), employing locals (we were brought up in a family where working hard was the only option), and using the services of other local companies (from hiring electricians, to eating at local restaurants). What's next? Well, due to the blending of families, multiple generations living together, people living overseas, people moving from overseas, fixer up cars, classic cars, holiday decorations gone wild, my new home isn't ready yet, my kid just moved back home, and I want my garage back, Cypress Creek Storage is preparing to build two more storage buildings and a new office within the next five years in order to take care of all your storage needs. So when you shop around, think local. Cypress Creek Storage: locally owned and operated, since 2001.

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