All Posts Tagged: senior care

Customer Wise: High standards earn community’s trust

Michelle Di Gangi
Small Business Banking

I know I speak for all of our business bankers when I say that we’re constantly inspired by — and in awe of — our small business clients. So much so, that we’d like to start sharing on our blog what we hear from them in this ongoing series called “Customer Wise” — whether it’s advice, lessons learned, or an interesting market perspective.

Mary Martinez at her desk, smiling at an employee who is mostly off-camera.To kick things off and mark National Small Business Week, we’ve asked five of Bank of the West’s business banking clients to share insights and tips for anyone starting a business now.

This Q&A features Mary Martinez, owner of Home Instead Senior Care in Albuquerque, New Mexico, which provides companionship and home care for seniors. I was struck by how her self-confidence emerged through her work. And her insistence on high standards is impressive!

Q: Think back to when you started your business. What do you wish someone had told you before you started?

A: It took me a year to decide I could start my business. So I guess I wish someone would have told me a year sooner, “Yeah, do it! You can do it.” I just didn’t know. I didn’t have the confidence in myself that I should have had. I would have started sooner if I could go back and do it again.

Based on your experience starting and running a business, what advice would you give someone starting a business today?

One of the things that I did for myself was find mentors in the community — particularly in the aging community — who I really trusted and respected. If I was unsure about something, I would turn to them for advice. Find mentors and people you can trust.

And as you’re hiring people, hire people who know what they are doing and let them do their jobs. I have a very awesome crew. They all do an excellent job, and I don’t worry if I have to be gone. I know the show is going to go on without me.

What are you most proud of when it comes to your business?

My biggest, proudest point is our reputation in the community — we are truly considered a trusted resource. It’s a feather in my cap to have that trust.

We don’t compromise, we don’t cut corners, and we insist on perfection when it comes to our caregivers. We are really, really picky. Out of every 100 people, we hire maybe 7. It pays off in the end because people know we have very high caliber caregivers.

Would you do it again (why or why not)?

I would definitely do it again. And the reason why is I really, really love what I do. This is an important service, and a very important industry when you consider how many people turn 65 every day. Or how many people get diagnosed with Alzheimer’s every day. There is a huge need, and it’s just going to continue getting bigger as the Baby Boomers age. It’s critical to have good people out there doing this work.

You can learn more at Home Instead Senior Care’s site.

Mary Martinez, side profile, standing outside her Senior Care location.

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