While a majority of people dread the coming of winter and all the "joys" that come with it; scraping their car off in the morning, shoveling their way out the door, icy roads, terrible traffic, and the constant cold, I've always viewed it differently. Even as a kid, winter was a season to look forward to. Although my passion for both skiing and snowmobiling might have helped with that, snow was never something that slowed me down.
My introduction to the snow removal business started at 13 years old when my neighbours gifted me their broken-down snow blower. With the help of my older brother we managed to get it working again and I set out on my first steps as a young entrepreneur. Before I knew it, I had a lineup of customers in my neighbourhood, 16 in total, and a solid 8 hours of work each snowfall. On days when the snow hit extra hard I would even take a couple of sick days from school to ensure my customers were cleared out. This worked out well until my English teacher got home and found her laneway perfectly clear…
Then there was even the one winter when I broke my hand, and as a savvy 17 year old businessman, I recruited a couple of my friends to blow out the laneways for me while I healed. I can vividly remember the feeling of pride I had, bringing home a pile of bills and dumping them on the kitchen table for my parents to stash away into my college savings account.
Many years later I can say that I haven’t lost that drive for satisfying customers and providing exemplary service. And above all, I still manage to enjoy the work. For example in mid-February, when we were hit with almost a foot of snow, I had a couple one-off calls from people who needed help clearing their driveway. When I pulled into one of them, three kids immediately lined up at the window to watch, ducking underneath the window curtains to see what I was up to. My first thought was that these kids were excited to watch my plow truck at work. However, when the mother came out to thank me, she mentioned that the kids were terrified that I had come to remove all of the snow off their property. They had actually pleaded with their mother to make me go away. Turns out these kids have the same passion for snow I had, and still do.
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