Making the Connection in Customer Service
Michael Cornelius started his electrical contracting business in 2005 when a series of hurricanes devastated the area and the need for all types of new construction and repair was peaking. But he credits his wife for launching his company. “My wife was my inspiration. Her family owns a business and she’s always encouraging me to succeed,” said Cornelius.
Already working in the field, Cornelius saw owning his own company as the next step in his professional development. “I enjoyed the electrical industry. The technical aspects are interesting and it’s intriguing to see how the technology changes over time,” he explained. “Plus it’s highly competitive and there’s a wide range of specialties, so there is room for many electrical contractors with different areas of expertise.”
Finding the Niche
Like many small businesses, success comes from finding that distinctive forte that sets you apart. For Cornelius Electrical it’s their willingness and ability to work on projects that are customized or more difficult and challenging than typical electrical contracts, specifically electronics and integration for building systems and controls.
But along with the technical expertise comes the priority of listening to the customer and delivering results. “It’s important that our customers know what’s available for their project – whether it be a special color or the ability to operate a device with a smart phone from the other side of the world. Those are the types of things with which we like to educate our customers so they get the most out of their electrical systems,” said Cornelius. “We try to treat every project likes it’s our own property.”
By doing that customers are compelled to tell someone about the great experience they had or how much they enjoy the systems installed, according to Cornelius, “which is the best way to market our services.”