Contributed by Tom Bemiller (EO Philadelphia), founder and CEO of The Aureus Group, which serves as the management company for three auto body shops with the goal of Repairing the Repair® Process. We asked Tom about his entrepreneurial journey. Here’s what he shared:
My entrepreneurial journey began when I was eight years old: I started doing yard work for neighbors because I desperately wanted a Nintendo. I grew it into a decent landscaping business as a teenager.
In college, I got my degree in pre-med but decided not to go to medical school after graduation. I moved back home. While I figured out what to do with my life, I started helping a friend who owned an auto body shop with special projects.
Identify the opportunity
Over six years, my role expanded into shop manager and director of operations. Accidental exposure to the auto body industry opened my eyes to just how awful the industry is. I saw a significant opportunity to improve it. When the plan to take over my friend’s business fell through in 2012, I started Aureus Auto Body (which is now The Aureus Group).
I started my own company to create a better environment and process for fixing cars because I realized that just about everybody in the business was frustrated, tired and beaten down. As an industry, auto repair severely lacks leadership, which creates awful work environments. A bad employee experience translates directly into poor customer experiences, so it’s no surprise that everybody hates getting their car fixed.