If you are going to open up your own business or franchise, it is important that you have a good understanding of how the economy in your region and your industry operates. Without this, you won’t be able to make the best strategic decisions to move the business forward. Ric Trahan, the owner of ShelfGenie in Houston, talks about his career as a business owner.

(Photo Courtesy of Ric Trahan)

(Photo Courtesy of Ric Trahan)

What degree program did you study?

“I studied economics at the University of Texas.”

What does your current job entail?

“By owning multiple business ventures serving the Houston home improvement industry, I am spearheading the strategic direction for those businesses. I am responsible for recruiting the exceptional designers and installers for ShelfGenie and creating a positive and enriching work culture.”

What is your favorite part of your daily duties? 

“Connecting with my employees whether is it through a quick phone call or in a face-to-face meeting. It is important that everyone feels like they are a part of a team, so staying in touch with them on a daily basis is the most rewarding part of my day.”

Do you feel your education prepared you for your current role? 

“The lessons that I learned in college have given me the basis for understanding the operations of my business, but the real world experience prepared me for being a business owner. I had to learn the right mindset for being a successful entrepreneur and all the things that came along with it, like managing people, putting operational systems in place and keeping the business evolving.”

Do you have any advice for people wanting to pursue a similar career?

“To be a successful entrepreneur, the best experience someone can receive is learning how to overcome the obstacles that will come your way and still remaining confident. The first step is to be passionate about what you are doing. It’s not an easy lifestyle to live, but it can be very rewarding when you know that your customers are happy with the service we provided.”

Gillian Kruse is a freelance writer living in Houston. She graduated from Rice University with a great love for all performing and visual arts. She enjoys writing about arts and cultural events, especially little-known ones, to help Houstonians learn about what’s going on in their city. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.

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