Until five years ago Jay Miller had 26 employees and 12 trucks on the road. The risk, the exposure, and the jockeying took their toll and he scaled back. Now he runs the design/build company focusing on custom kitchens, baths, and additions with the help of his wife, Karen, as project coordinator, and his sister, Kim, as office manager, using trade partners for labor and design.
• The Millers built a new office next to their home and — with an eye on their future — converted their 5,000-square-foot showroom into luxury rental apartments. They’ve hit a sweet spot, Jay says, achieving “a good balance between work and home life.”
• Karen, who was a mortgage broker for 26 years, does purchasing, scheduling, and also assists clients with project financing. She does the selections by taking clients to various showrooms around town.
• Jay handpicks subs, who, in turn, become spokespeople for the company.
• The company’s “No. 1 tool”: its extensive customer referral base.