St. Louis Bi-State Region
FROM BACKYARD MECHANIC TO BUSINESS OWNER DAVID’S STORY T alking to Gary and David is a bit like talking to two old friends. As a mentor and mentee pair at SCORE, they build each other up and are quick to mention each other’s strengths and positive attributes. Over their two years working together, they’ve built a relationship based on support, guidance, and mutual admiration. Gary is a former business owner who joined SCORE as a mentor a little over five years ago. After retiring from his business, he wanted to give back and felt he had experience and expertise he could contribute to new business owners. For the last five years, he’s been sharing valuable knowledge and helping fledgling entrepreneurs get off on the right foot. David is skilled, described by Gary as a “really smart guy” who came into SCORE as an ace mechanic, but he needed training and support for his business management skills. David had been a mechanic for several years when he decided to go out on his own and “bought a garage with a house attached.” David set up a shop in the garage, where he repaired cars for nine years.Aspiring to open his own shop, he applied
Anyone can be a backyard mechanic, but not everyone can be a business owner. Gary taught me how.
to do this,” he says. Over the past couple years, Gary helped David generate a monthly financial statement showing his profitability.And it all moved David closer to his goal. A couple months ago, David went back to the bank with his business plan and finances clearly laid out, and the bank granted him a loan. David says this time around, he was able to speak the financial language that felt elusive before, and his experience at SCORE was on his side. He says, “Every banker I talked to, when I told them I was working with SCORE, loved it.” “Anyone can be a backyard mechanic, but not everyone can be a business owner. Gary taught me how,” David attests. He’s since leased a facility and opened up his own auto repair shop. He has a couple employees working for him, and he’s selling used cars that he personally repairs and gets into excellent working order. Even with these milestones reached, Gary isn’t going anywhere. He says,“I’ll continue to work with him to help him be successful.”
for a loan but was turned away because the bank didn’t feel his business plan was strong enough.
“That’s when he came to me,” Gary says.
With years of experience in the automotive industry, Gary was the perfect match for the insight David needed.Working together, Gary helped David with the financial side of business, setting up an accounting system, teaching him how to use QuickBooks, and giving him a better feel for running a business overall. David is appreciative of all of it.“It’s important for me to know how With SCORE, you're never alone! Schedule an appointment to meet with a mentor today. Call 1-866-726-7340 or visit www.StLScore.org right now!
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