I think mission statements are gay. There, I said it. Now, before you get offended right off the bat, let me clarify. There are many definitions for the word “gay,” and in this instance I mean the 3rd definition I found from Oxford Dictionary: “(used especially by young people) an offensive way to describe something you find boring, stupid or not attractive.” Well, I guess right there it says that it is offensive, so if you are offended, it seems like that’s okay.
I do have a mission and vision – not only for my business but for my personal life as well, and I can see the value in defining it and letting others know what it is. But generally, business consultants advise you to come up with a brief all encapsulating formal mission statement, filled with business jargon, that somehow sounds like every other mission statement you ever read for any company in any industry. To me, it sounds empty. Let me take a stab at it: “Our mission at Roofer Chicks is to provide our customers with the best contractor experience they have ever had, while empowering women to succeed in the trades.” And that’s true, for sure. But it sounds flat to me. Maybe it’s that I am a person of action – I would rather show you than tell you what my values and my mission are. And really, has anyone ever hired a company based on their mission statement?
But I am going to tell you about my mission and my values. That’s why we are here. To me, this has multi facets. For starters, there is personal and business. Then within the business, I have employees, customers, venders, suppliers, subcontractors, competitors….. It goes on and on. One simple statement cannot encompass all of that.
Customers. I want to provide you with the very best contracting experience you ever will have or ever have had already. After we are done doing business, I would like to leave a sunshiny, sparkly residue on your heart, so that every time you think of us and your experience, your soul shines. To me, this experience includes many things. I need to provide value – to provide you with a product that meets your needs and wants. I need to have the best warranties, and I need to stand behind those promises. I want to provide knowledge to educate you about what you are purchasing, even if you end up going with someone else. If you choose to do business with us, I want to be an asset to you, providing expertise in working with your insurance company if needed. I want you to find us to be honorable, respectful, loving, kind and fun. I want to set clear expectations of what your experience will be like, and I want to follow through on those commitments. In construction, as in life, there are often unforeseen circumstances, and I cannot promise that this will be a utopia. But I can give you my commitment to communicate with you throughout the entire process, and I can also commit to listen to you if you have any concerns or questions.
Employees. It is absolutely true that happy employees make happy customers. I want my employees to feel safe and loved. Some people think love doesn’t belong in business, but I think love belongs everywhere on this planet, and so much so in people that I select to be part of my business. I have poured my heart, soul, finances, and future into this Roofer Chicks – I have to trust and love the people that form this entity. I want my employees to be well compensated – not just financially, but also emotionally. I want you to experience life and live it, and as you need me to, I will make allowances for you to do the things that truly matter – like letting you go on your kids’ field trip, or doctor’s appointments should you fall ill, or bringing you casseroles when you have a tragedy. …. I want to help you plan for and secure your future. I want you to explore things you want to learn and try things you have not done. In exchange, I ask for your respect, loyalty, and commitment to follow my vision. Yes, this love has conditions! I am not Jesus.
Women. I want to change the world! I really do. I want to show other women that working in the trades, in particular roofing, is something that is in their toolbox. So many women feel trapped by their circumstances and skills; because of this, women often find themselves “trapped” in inhospitable environments. I know, because I have been there. They feel defeated when childcare costs just as much as they can obtain in income. The roofing industry has virtually no barriers to entry and provides an excellent lifestyle and career path. Working in the trades is empowering, as we take charge of our own lives and destiny. We do not have to be victims of our circumstances.
Men. I love men. Truth be told, that’s one of the main things that attracted me to the roofing industry! Men, to include my big brother, are who taught me almost everything I know about this trade. Roofer Chicks will always employ men – amazing, wonderful, skilled men who believe in our mission and are a vital part of it. These men respect and believe in women – I could not do this without them. Roofer Chicks is NOT gender exclusive, nor does it have any aspirations of being so. There are so many jokes to be had here, I know, but men can be and are Roofer Chicks, too.
Venders/Suppliers. I promise to live up to your expectations and adhere to our terms to the very best of my ability. I will always pay you – I will not take advantage of our relationship. I will be honest with you in our transactions. I will respect your time and your organization. I will also be transparent with you, especially when things are not easy. You will never have to wonder where we stand. I expect my staff to treat you and your employees with the same level of respect. We are a true partnership.
Manufacturers. I understand that we are the face of your brand. I promise to represent your company as a true ambassador of the brand you have created. I promise to be transparent with you, and to be open about our needs and the needs of our customers. I promise to be loyal and true so long as I am representing your brand.
Subcontractors. I promise to be fair to you and to inclusive of you as part of our team. I will treat you kindly and respectfully. You are a vital part of this company, and you are valued. If anyone treats you in a manner that is not appropriate, because of your status, sex, or race, I will defend you – this includes from any of my employees, suppliers, or customers. I will be loyal to you. I have high expectations of you, your quality of work, and your representation of my company. I believe respect is a two-way street.
Competitors. I salute you! I view my competitors as an asset, not a threat. There have been so many times in my career where I have reached out to a competitor asking for help, and I have never once been refused. I promise to not speak poorly of you even if you deserve it! If you need my support, I will provide it. I know that there is plenty of work for everyone and that we cannot possibly do it all. Good, ethical competition creates a better marketplace for everyone. Thank you to all of my competitor friends and colleagues who make us stronger. A few of my competitors who have helped us: 3G Roofing, Heartland Roofing, Bravo Roofing, Prestige Metal Roofing, Remedy Roofing, Rhino Roofing, Divided Sky Roofing, Kanga Roof, Wilson Roofing – I am certain I forgot some.
Friends and Family. I promise not to give you friend pricing, nor will I ask for it from you in your business. I promise to treat you with the same respect I treat all of my customers. Since my mission is to provide them with the best possible experience that I can, I cannot offer you anything more or better, because I am already giving my best. I also promise not to give you any worse treatment than I would give a stranger, just because you are my friend and you will “understand.”
Personal Legacy. I want to leave a legacy. My daughter Hannah is my driving force behind my career – I left Corporate America so that I could be a mother to her. At the time, I was a single mom, barely making it, and missing her life. I want my daughter to know that her mom is strong, available, capable, authentic, honorable, fair, respectful, brave, transparent, resourceful, humble, courageous. I want her to see me fail and I want her to see me stand up. I want her to know we live in a way that we are constantly trying to be better than we were yesterday, in all things. To show her these things, I have to be these things – there is no veil at home. I want her to know that she, too, can hold her head high and face the world and do anything.
Professional Legacy. I want it to be said that we changed the industry – that we made it a better place for all parties involved in this mission document. I want to have changed lives – women’s lives in particular. I want them to say, “Damn, without that Feller girl, where would we be?” That would be the greatest honor.
God. I pray that I am His vessel and His temple, and that He will do with me as He wills. I pray that through me, I will bring glory to His name, and that by my words and actions, I will be a testament to His grace.
Profit. I am in business to make a profit and to create a future. I will not apologize for that. I have worked very hard and sacrificed much to attain this goal. It still evades me, but my time is coming.
Community. We strive to be a vital part of the community we live in. We are involved and support our local businesses and non-profits. We foster friendships and build relationships in our community. We cry when our community cries, we laugh with joy when our community thrives, and we work alongside our community to accomplish its goals. We loved it when it snowed at Wassailfest. We are New Braunfels and our surrounding, sister communities – it is where we live, play and work.