Richard Lord joined us from Hometown Feed & Supply. He and his wife Shannon bought out Circle C in mid-2014 and are experiencing success as one of our newest small business owners.
Richard did not start out as an entrepreneur - he was the floor manager for JC Penney for 34 years. For 31 of those years he has been married to Shannon and they have two children, Amber and Jason.
He started his career early as a part-time sales associate and high school student. He attributes his positive attitude and work ethic to the wonderful mentors he has had over the years. He and his family moved six times and finally settled in Louisburg in 2006 and this is where they would like to stay.
With 2000 associates and $300M in volume, Richard feels like he has developed what it takes to own his own business. "You can't be in retail that long unless you have a passion and an entrepreneurial spirit," he said. He knew he wanted to be able to "play with his own money, instead of someone else's" one day, to be able to lead people and develop his own team, he just didn't know when it would happen.
It happened quickly. Shannon's passion is horses, so when she found out in July of 2014 that Louisburg's Circle C was going out of business, she posed Richard with a question - what if? And that's all it took. In August he took early retirement from JC Penney and they worked out a deal with Circle C and closed on September 14.
Now they are Hometown Feed & Supply. They stand for value, quality in both their products and their customer service. "There is a 60-year history of feed stores serving the community out of this building," he said, "and that means a lot to us."
It is important always to remember that they are a small business with major competitors. For that reason, they will never be able to have the cheapest prices or the largest assortment of goods since they are limited on space. "What we know we can stand for is service. We want customers to come in and feel at home."
To quote Penney himself, Richard reiterated, "It's the service we are not obliged to give that matters the most."
He and Shannon know that success will not come overnight. With the help of their knowledgeable staff, Matthew Jones (New Lancaster & New Horizons) and Jay Bond (born and raised in Louisburg), he knows they are moving in the right direction. They are growing and building a loyal clientele - every month is better than before and there's a positive trend in repeat business. "Our challenge now is how to activate new customers," he said, "They have to have a reason to walk through the door."
In Other News:
  • E-Recycling is Saturday, April 4 from 9am-noon in the Louisburg Middle School parking lot. This is a biennial event (odd years)
  • In conjunction with E-Recycling, if you have canes, crutches, walkers or wheelchairs, Don will help get them to patients in need in Africa.
  • Anna ran her first meeting in President Julie's absence...good job!
  • Bethany from the Herald and Levi from LHRC joined us as guests
Happy Do$$ars:
  • Tom announced the Meet & Greet Marty for Mayor on Wednesday, March 25th from 5:30-7:30pm at the Timber Creek Event Center
  • Detroit Shelley announced that her son Daniel is engaged to be married next summer, right after he graduates from medical school in May
  • Craig gave since he was an unprepared finer