Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Gerald Miller, owner of Future-Now Carpets Ltd., located in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

We specialize in encapsulation cleaning of carpets and upholstery. We also do mattress cleaning using the Hygienitech system. We sanitize fogging when our clients need to be and feel safe. We service both residential and commercial clients and can handle anything from 1 room to 40,000 square feet on the 40th floor. Our passion is in helping people and making things right for them. I don't believe in upselling and feel it's a horrible practice that often prays on the fears of the client. We always provide a total cost with no hidden charges, and as long as the scope doesn't change, the price will remain the same regardless of what we experience. For example, we don't charge for stain removal or neutralizing odors (it's just part of the cleaning). We dry them and vacuum them before we're done. I don't believe you should have to avoid using your carpets until they're dry. We support 3 groups with special pricing:

  1. First Responders: they put their lives on the line every day; we want to say thank you.
  2. Canadian Military (past and present) These amazing individuals and their families sacrifice so much so we can all remain free and safe.
  3. Seniors (60+) This is a group that is the reason we have what we do today, and no words can ever say thank you enough.

Tell us about yourself

I was working for a not-for-profit and was overseeing construction and maintenance of operations. I took a promotion, and after taking it, the position was eliminated. I was offered my old position back, but I'd already promoted someone else into it, and I refused to remove him so that I could have it, so I decided to start a company. In my maintenance role, I'd discovered encapsulation cleaning and felt it had potential. Six months later, I was running a business that I believed in, and at the time, no one else was doing it the way I was. In the last 8 years, I'd love to say it's been smooth sailing, but I'd have to lie. It gets more comfortable with each passing year, and I've been blessed to meet and build relationships with some amazing people. My desire to help other people, both clients and other business owners, makes everything worthwhile. So many people have helped us that I feel it's my duty to give back and help others succeed if possible.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Being able to help others and when the opportunity arises to mentor and support other businesses and business owners. By yourself, it can become overwhelming at times, but together we can all succeed.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Staying out of your own head. I often tell my wife that I wouldn't change it for the world, but that it's often the loneliest journey I've ever been on. Nobody else cares as much about what you do as you do, and for me, that can become a huge frustration. Finding someone you can talk to that will truly listen is a very difficult thing to find.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Understand your numbers in the form of percentages. If you don't understand your numbers better than anyone else, you will struggle and potentially fail.
  2. Don't undervalue yourself and your product/service. This is one of the things we did early on, and it's the most common thing I see others doing.
  3. Find a mentor or a peer that you can talk to and hopefully listen to and for them also. This type of support will change your world.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

Establish your values early on and live by them; they will define you and your company. Once you know your numbers set your pricing and again live by it. Once you allow someone to negotiate your pricing down, they will assume they can do it every time, and so will everyone they talk to. You can't stay in business if you don't make a profit.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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