Pop-A-Lock - January 2020



JANUARY 2020 25 Years and Counting Lessons I’ve Learned After Owning a Business for 25 Years I n December of 1995, I opened the first Pop-A-Lock office in Lexington with a business partner. The only service we provided was unlocking car doors. We were the sixth Pop-A-Lock office in the franchise to open its doors at that point. Today, there are over 300 franchises nationwide. This year will be our 25th year in business, a milestone not many businesses achieve, and we’ve expanded to have offices in Louisville, Lexington, and Southern Indiana. That growth and success wouldn’t have been possible without learning some lessons along the way. EVOLVE YOUR BUSINESS WITH YOUR INDUSTRY’S TECHNOLOGY. When we first opened Pop-A-Lock in Lexington back in 1995, we only offered one service — car door unlocking. Lock and key technology was nothing like it is now. This was also back before mobile phones, when people still used pagers! Our business isn’t even the same business it was 10 years ago, let alone 25 years ago. We’ve gone from just a car door unlocking service to a full- service mobile locksmithing company, and we now offer services to correspond with technological advances in the industry, like programming key fobs and transponder chips. ADAPT YOUR MARKETING TO THE TIME AND AUDIENCE. Anyone who has ever owned a business, and probably those who haven’t, can attest to the power of effective marketing. The right message at the right time to the right people is a huge part of what makes a business survive and thrive. However, sending the wrong message or marketing to the wrong audience can waste time and money better spent elsewhere. In 25 years of business, I certainly haven’t made the right decision every time, but fortunately, I’ve learned how to adjust our marketing when needed. HIRE QUALITY EMPLOYEES TO PROVIDE QUALITY SERVICE FOR YOUR CUSTOMERS. How to give customers the service they need in a timely fashion has been the biggest lesson I’ve learned since starting Pop-A- Lock. One of the key ways to do that is by hiring quality employees who provide the kind of service your customers expect and need. Not only that, but I’ve found the best way to make sure my team provides the best possible service is for me to take good care of

Happy New Years from the Barnes family

them. Hiring and keeping quality employees is a huge challenge for any business, and I always want to make sure the right people stay on board. Just like a good business never stops growing or improving, neither does a good business owner. Even as I enter Pop-A-Lock’s 25th year, I am still trying to grow as an entrepreneur by attending seminars, reading books, and listening to podcasts and CDs. I also make an effort to visit with other business owners to learn their methods of providing quality service to their customers. Over the past 25 years, we’re really happy so many of you have trusted us with your car door unlocking, locksmithing, and other building security needs. We hope you’ll trust us for many years to come. From all of us at Pop-A-Lock, we wish all of you a healthy, happy, and prosperous New Year. -Doug Barnes


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