Meet Ronnie and Serena Meador, the owners and operators of Nabors Garage Doors. Ronnie and Serena started Nabors Garage Doors in 2017 with just $286. Two years later, they have their own mini-empire with locations in Tyrone, Alpharetta, and Charlotte, and will soon have one in Dallas, TX.
Their story is incredibly inspirational and shows that anything is possible, no matter where you come from.
What Was Your Childhood Like? How Did You Guys Meet?
Ronnie: My mom and Dad divorced when I was only 4. At 15, my Mom passed away. I never knew my Dad, so we stayed with our Stepdad for a few months. After turning 16, I moved out and enrolled myself in school. I remember writing my own excuse letters.
It was a struggle to go to School, pay rent, and support myself at 16. I don’t know how I convinced the landlord to lease me the trailer I was living in. I was working odd jobs outside of school.
Eventually, I decided to have a complete change of scenery and leave. I moved to Georgia and we met in December 2007 at a widespread panic concert.
Can You Describe Your Business and What Makes Your Company Different?
Serena: We do garage door repair. We can do any repair that is needed. We can fix broken springs, install new motors, or do just the panels. What sets us apart is that we are not in it to ‘get rich’. We prioritize customer service over profit and we don’t take advantage of people. That is what gets us repeat customers. We are also extremely careful on how we select employees. Everyone that works for us does high quality work, and Ronnie personally oversees the work done and always makes sure the job is done right.
Ronnie: We like to give customers the benefits of working with a larger company while still getting a small business “feel.” Our customers can contact one of the owners and we usually will call back within a few minutes. Yet, at the same time, we can provide fast service and have multiple technicians available. We are very involved in the day to day operations.
What Got You Started in the Garage Door Industry?
Ronnie: Prior to the Garage Door Industry, I was an engineer for Haliburton – Oil field services. They are the second largest oil field service company in the world. The market crashed in 2015 and I got laid off towards the end of the year. I had to find another job, and I got into the garage door industry. Eventually, I went back to the oil field industry, which lasted about 20 days.
Serena: It was really hard because he traveled a lot. He would be gone for at least two weeks at a time. Then when he got laid off, we got used to him being around. So it was really difficult to go back to him traveling. So he literally called me and said “can I just quit?” because our daughter was crying every night. So I said yes. We then took the last $286 we had and started a garage door company.
Where Did You Grow Up?
Serena: I grew up in Alpharetta.
Ronnie: I grew up in Texas and moved to Georgia in August of 2007.
Did You Go to School? What’s Your Background?
Serena: I have a bachelor’s in communications and helped start two businesses prior to this one. I became familiar with the legality of it.
Ronnie: School of Hard Knocks. I’ve always been great with numbers in general. My engineering job was 100% numbers. There’s a lot of calculus and trigonometry. So because of my experience in the oil field industry, I was able to work my way up. They actually approached me with a job offer and I got an engineering job without a degree.
What Is Your Biggest Challenge?
Ronnie: It’s a daily challenge. We employ 10 people, so it’s tough to make sure we keep everyone busy.
Serena: It’s difficult knowing when the right time is to hire someone and when to expand. Every time we hire someone we have to buy a new vehicle, provide a gas card, and pay for all the parts to be in the truck and ready to go.
How Many Storefronts Do You Have?
Ronnie: Three right now. Tyrone, Alpharetta, and Charlotte. Soon we will have one in Dallas, too.
So You Have Employees that Work Out in Charlotte? How Do You Find Your Employees for New Locations?
Ronnie: Yes we have one person right now. What we do is we take a person who is a top performer at our company and make them an offer to move out there. Then we implement a profit sharing program that incentivizes them to have a stake in the operation.
You Have Had Significant Growth for Being in Business Only Two Years. How Did You Manage That?
Ronnie: Yes, there are several companies that have been in business a lot longer than us, but we have much better reviews. We have over 200+ five star reviews on Google. I think the main thing is that we just take care of our customers. We do what’s best for them and have even helped people finance their projects if they need it.
So You Finance Them In-House?
Serena: We don’t make that regular practice, but we have done it in special circumstances when people are in need.
Where Do You See Your Business in Five Years?
Ronnie: Hopefully we will be in 6 or 7 different states. Then eventually in 15 to 20 states.
How Do You Complement Each Other? What are Each of Your Strengths and Weaknesses?
Serena: I think that’s a big part of our success. My strength is to be organized and detail-oriented in the legal and financial structure of the business. Ronnie is better at the advertising side of the business, which I know nothing about.
Any Challenges in Working Together?
Serena: It’s definitely a challenge. But we have separate jobs so that we aren’t together all the time. Sometimes one of us will be in the office while the other is at home. It’s not perfect, but I get to hang out with my best friend all day and we get the freedom to spend time with family.
How Do You Separate Work from Life?
Serena: That is actually probably our biggest challenge. At times our work can consume us so we have to set strict boundaries and say that during certain times, work discussion is off limits. We can talk to it all night we let it happen.
What’s Your Favorite Things About Alpharetta?
Serena: I grew up here. We both lived here when we first met. I love the downtown area around Main Street. That main strip has stayed pretty much the same. It looks almost the same as it did when I grew up there. We’re proud of the city. There are families that have been here for decades and it is such a nice place.
What Does Your Typical Work Week Look Like? How Do Your Mornings Start?
Ronnie: Our work day starts at about 7:45 AM and doesn’t end until 9:00 PM. Real life starts at about 6:20 AM.
Serena: Our mornings start with a pot full of coffee. Our office staff doesn’t come in until 8AM, but the phone starts ringing earlier. Each morning, Ronnie gets online to see where we are coming up on our ads. I look at our invoices from the previous day and take care of the accounting.
Who In Your Life Has Inspired You the Most? Who Has Helped You the Most in Life?
Ronnie: It’s a mix between my wife, Serena’s Parents, and our daughter.
Serena: Definitely my Parents. They’re our biggest cheerleaders. Also Ronnie is a big inspiration. He was on his own supporting himself at only 15 and he has worked his way up.
(Interested in learning more about Nabors Garage Doors? Click here!)