Charles Barnes and David Medeiros, co-owners of Barnes Custom Builders, know a thing or two about customer service. Barnes used to work as a valet, and Medeiros used to work at restaurants and grocery stores. Those experiences have led them to bring a customer-first approach to their business.

“We have weekly or biweekly on-site meetings to continuously hear feedback and make sure they’re happy,” Medeiros says. He and Barnes also try to avoid issues by having tough conversations with homeowners as early as possible.

Barnes is the general manager, while Medeiros handles the business side of the company. “We handle things at the highest levels; we don’t delegate out, and we try to be present at most of the meetings,” Medeiros says. “It’s seamless from sales to production.”

Their dedication to creating a great experience within their company shows: Medeiros says more than half of their leads come from referral and repeat business.

“We’ve had three clients buy lunch for our guys, and I think that’s a great testament,” Medeiros says. He admits that they, like much of the industry, have trouble finding skilled craftsmen but says that retention is no longer an issue.

The company’s benefits package includes paid time off, health care, and a retirement plan. It hosts several barbeques throughout the summer and a holiday party and will sometimes drop in on a jobsite to see how things are going and buy pizza for the crew. “Our core group has been in place for the last several years without any turnover,” Medeiros says.