We all have priorities, whether personal or professional. But along life’s twists and turns they sometimes get misplaced or difficult to attain. It’s especially difficult to match business and personal priorities with one fell swoop. Often the two are like trying to fit a puzzle piece into the wrong spot. As many times as you turn it, the piece just isn’t going to fit.
But Jeff Spoor and his wife, Cathy, find themselves in an enviable position since becoming franchise owners with CertaPro Painters and recently opening CertaPro of Salem-Eugene. CertaPro Painters is America’s largest and North America’s most-referred painting company. Cathy serves as the company’s office manager.
Jeff, 62, spent more than 20 years working for one of the country’s largest property and casualty insurance companies in a variety of management positions. Cathy had worked as a mortgage loan officer, but has a background in advertising/marketing. Jeff also several spent years in the franchise consulting industry.
“I wanted to get back into entrepreneurship myself and take my life back,” Spoor said. “I wanted to spend my time the way I wanted, and likewise, Cathy wanted to get back to doing what she enjoys, marketing and customer service.”
Commercial and residential painting is an estimated $40 billion industry in the U.S. and Canada. CertaPro has been ranked No. 1 by Entrepreneur magazine in its category for the last three years and boasts a customer referral rate that exceeds 95 percent.
Conversely, according to estimates, the largest U.S. painting companies have less than one percent market share and more than 76 percent of businesses in the painting industry have four employees or fewer. But best-in-class operational systems and procedures make CertaPro the most professional business model in the industry and its satisfied customers are the direct benefactors.
“Having a family owned and operated business has been a lifelong dream of ours,” Spoor said. “It gives us the flexibility to prioritize our life the way we see fit. Our family and health are extremely important. Cathy and I hope that being healthy and having a balanced focus will help us to be better business owners, as well. The culture of CertaPro Painters is ‘family first’, and that suites us perfectly.”
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of actively employed painting and wall-covering contractors will increase by 38.5 percent during the 10-year period from 2010 to 2020. The bureau further concluded that sales of residential painting services are likely to increase by an annual rate of three to four percent during the same period.
Spoor said his focus is on steady growth, targeting the Eugene/Springfield area in the short term, while expanding toward Salem over the coming year.
“The improved economic outlook has definitely had a positive impact and I also believe the painting industry tends to largely be recession-resistant as a whole,” Spoor said.