-Written by Erik Sargent
When you look at everything that has built up the TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® brand, arguably nothing is more important than quality customer service.
It’s what keeps us going and what has helped develop our reputation in each of the communities we operate, and it’s also what attracts people to our brand – both as customers, and as employees. For Multi-unit Franchisee Grant Hornbuckle, helping people is one of his favorite things, and our reputation for customer service was a major selling point in him purchasing his first franchise.
“I really just love helping people in any way,” said Hornbuckle, who owns two franchise locations in Hollister and Springfield, Missouri. “If you think about it, we are the hero in a lot of situations, and I like that. Our mission statement and the core values are something I truly believe in, and I really like how we help people with our business.”
Hornbuckle’s TWO MEN AND A TRUCK story started in 2004, when he became the operations manager at the Springfield location where his father and stepmother were franchisees. After two years, he decided to purchase the ownership stake from his stepmother, and was officially a franchisee. He later went on to open the Tulsa, Okla., franchise – where he was franchisee until 2012 – and also purchased the Hollister location.
Franchising with TWO MEN AND A TRUCK was a different path than his days as a sales rep for Kraft foods – a job he held prior to joining the company – and it allowed him to chase one of his lifelong dreams.
“Well, at the time, the most attractive part of franchising to me was the ownership,” Hornbuckle said. “My college degree from Missouri State was in business management with an emphasis on entrepreneurship, so I did a basis for understanding the ownership of a small business, which I was really excited about.”
His prior experiences in sales prepared him for handling the customer-first aspect of TWO MEN AND A TRUCK, and it’s something that really helped ease him into the franchisee role.
“I think [my previous experiences] shaped me in the areas of customer service the best,” Hornbuckle said. “I understand how important that is in our business, and I understand the perspective that without a good reputation with our customers, we cannot be successful.”
When he first became a franchisee, Hornbuckle said the biggest challenge was decision making and realizing that every decision he made would affect everyone in the company, not just certain people at certain times.
After nearly 12 years as a franchisee, he has found new and improved ways to operate both of his locations, and is always looking to improve operations.
“We have made great strides with customer service compared to previous years, and this credit goes to our general managers and his team,” Hornbuckle said. “We’ve also improved our services, especially with storage. We currently have 12 portable storage containers, and another 12 coming. We have also opened a satellite location in Branson, which helps to grow our footprint and has worked out really well for us.”
For potential franchisees looking to join on with a moving company like TWO MEN AND A TRUCK, Hornbuckle would recommend it to those with an interest in customer service.
Hornbuckle continually looks forward with the growth of his franchises, and as a franchisee, is always setting goals to achieve new levels of success within the system.
“For myself, I suppose it would be to allow more decisions to be made by my team and to be a little less involved in the day-to-day operations so they can advance in their positions,” Hornbuckle said. “For the franchises, we hope to hit $4 million in revenue and to also expand into new markets, using some of our current team members to lead the way.”
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