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Survey

By Graham Clark August 31, 2010

Steve Sutter, owner, Sutter Roofing Company

We have hired new employees this year. We opened a branch in Orlando a few months ago, and they’re doing a fine job and we’re very pleased with the success we’ve had so far. We picked up a couple of big jobs in Sarasota. One of them is over $2 million, so it’s a big shot in the arm for our Sarasota office. Fortunately there is still some money out there; we even have some stimulus projects going on, doing solar work along with reroofing. So we’re very pleased with our position right now in the marketplace, and we’re looking to add to that backlog over the next few months. We’re not ecstatic about the margins, but certainly we are holding our own.

Dr. Charles Bens, owner, [email protected]

Because of the healthcare crisis, so many companies are getting the idea that they’d better take care of the health of their employees. The whole purpose of our company is workplace wellness education, and for some businesses we are actually becoming their health and wellness department. This year was twice as good as last year in terms of income and in terms of speaking engagements, and I expect next year to be three to four times bigger than this year. It’s too bad that this success had to come because people refuse to take better care of their health, but I’m trying to go out and correct that problem. 

Angela Rodocker, owner, Silver Resorts

Business is booming because of two strategies: We’re adding value without increasing our prices, and we’re providing an inexpensive, no-frills alternative for people who are price-conscious. These strategies were born out of the change in the economy; then this year we just went full bore on it. And yes, it’s worked. Some months we’re blowing last year’s revenues out of the water and some months we’re staying flat, but overall we are very happy with the results. The consumer wins, we win, the companies we’ve partnered with all win.

Alan Howes, co-owner, Awesome Orchids

I started the store sort of as a hobby, and it’s turned into something successful. I operated an orchid booth at the farmers’ market for 13 or 14 years, and over the course of that time I collected some loyal customers. I went from having a booth to having a small store, and then a larger store, and then a warehouse. When we moved into this location last October [in the Burns Square district], I went from 250 square feet to 1,200 square feet. There’s more overhead, but the actual sales have kept pace with the increase. I think this is about as far as I want to expand; you can get too big too fast.

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