St. Isidore-de-Bellevue, Saskatchewan
Tell us about your business.
PoppenWorks is a small web design, development and hosting company, focused on getting new and small business an online presence.
Why did you start your business?
I started my first business with a partner in 2003, when I was 23 years old, while building websites as a side job. That’s when I knew I wanted to be the only boss I’d ever have. Unfortunately, that business failed, but instead of seeing it as a failure, I took it as a learning experience. I picked up the pieces, brushed myself off and started planning my new business. By then I got married and decided to move to Canada.
Looking around in the area we settled down in, I saw a need for a web design company, which I started shortly after all the immigration papers were in order. PoppenWorks has been growing ever since.
Who are your ideal customers?
Ideal customers are the ones that have a vision, but let us take care of the result. We do what we do best, and people hire us because they trust our decisions. Clients that micromanage what we do make use feel like pixel pushers and code monkeys. The more freedom we have, the better the results.
Why do customers enjoy working with you?
We’re very straight forward with my clients. We don’t hide details, we tell it like it is and even if we know the client doesn’t like to hear it, we’ll give them our advice. Honesty is what goes the furthest, and I think that’s what has gotten us this far.
What was your first “big win” moment as a business owner?
(That moment when you said “hey I can do this!”)
The first client that put their faith in my abilities almost the day I “opened the doors”. They were excited about the result, and they’re still a customer.
What is the best advice you could give to someone just starting out?
There is a lot of advice out there, but the best advice I can give is: listen to people who know what they’re talking about. You can’t do it all alone, and you sure don’t know everything about everything. Hire an accountant, a lawyer (if needed) and surround yourself with experts. It’ll rub off on you.
How long have you been a Slingshot customer?
Since August 2013.
How has Slingshot help you run or grow your business?
Slingshot is amazing if you want to look like a serious business. The flexibility of adding and removing extensions, your personal greeting and voicemail in your email keep my business going, even if I’m not around.