Is the customer always right?Â Not all the time says Ashle
y Bodi, Co-Owner of Business Beware, a company that helps business owners deal with those â€œhard to pleaseâ€ consumers and fight back against those non-paying, and sometimes downright shady customers.Â Check out what Ashley had to say in this YGG interview.
We know youâ€™re a â€œYoung Go Getterâ€, but so our readers know, how old are you?
I just turned 27 in February in which I am still trying to process haha!
Can you tell us the quick history about yourself, and what drives you to succeed?
I think I knew when I had my first lemonade stand as a kid that I had the entrepreneur bug inside of me.Â Although I sort of denied it for a long time and went to college on a volleyball scholarship and went in undecided like the other 80% of people going to college do.Â I was never into the whole school thing, I loved to learn what interests me not something you have to read on a book list.Â In college I debated on what I wanted to do mostly because you have so many telling you that you have to decide on this one thing to do for the rest of your life and who truly knows what they want to do the rest of their life?Â I ended up graduating in 2005 with a Communications and Marketing degree.Â I still didnâ€™t know what I truly wanted to do although in the back of my head I had that thought of being an entrepreneur.Â Itâ€™s tough though because people and society donâ€™t encourage entrepreneurship although most jobs would not be here today without those who thought outside of the box and started the businesses they did.Â I headed out to Los Angeles to work on a documentary because I thought it was something I wanted to do and it sounded awesome at the time but soon after I got out there I realized that this was not where I was supposed to be. Not too long after that my dad called and asked if I wanted to come to FL to work for the family businesses and I took him up on it.Â It was when I started to work with my dad that I noticed what the other side looked like when dealing with all kinds of customers.Â With every job you deal with customers but itâ€™s a completely different thing when youâ€™re the owner, believe me I had no idea.Â And thatâ€™s when it hit me about something my dad and I had talked about when I was getting out of collegeâ€¦he said that there should be a site where businesses can warn each other about problem customers like something of a reverse Better Business Bureau.Â I went to him one day after we just fired one our problem customers and said â€œwe have got to create this site, itâ€™s time to stop customers like this who take advantage of businesses.â€Â And so from that day on BusinessBeware.Biz was born.Â I knew I had my work cut out for me with having to teach myself how to build a site that could function how we wanted it to and to get the word out about it was going to be a challenge too, or so I thought.Â There were many nights I stayed up until 2 or 3 am working on this concept and had whiteboards with information all over my condo for months. We finally launched the site in May of â€™08 and since then cannot believe the awesome feedback we have received with helping businesses all over the country.Â After about 6 months we had businesses from Canada contact us wanting us to open it up to them as well so we added them soon after that.Â Since then Business Beware has become a voice for the business owners.
We know you are a younggogetter, but I am sure there is more to you than that. What are some other jobs you have done prior to you current one or new projects you are currently working on?
Well since I had no idea what I wanted to do I worked a lot of different jobs just to make ends meet or extra money in college.Â I have worked in/at retail, restaurants, gyms, been a lifeguard and others that I donâ€™t really regret because they made me the person I am today.Â I think itâ€™s important to work at jobs you donâ€™t necessarily like because then you figure out what you do like and you learn to suck it up and just do it.Â Â I love to be inspired and I love to inspire people as well.Â I think you learn from each other and itâ€™s amazing what you can learn from other people and their businesses.Â If it was not working for the family business over the past few years I donâ€™t think I would have had the passion for Business Beware like I do right now, so things always work out and happen for a reason.Â Right now I am focused on Business Beware and the radio show we launched a few months ago.Â Itâ€™s a lot of work getting that radio show together on top of running Business Beware, but I would not trade a single second of it.Â Iâ€™m also focused on showing others my age, younger or even older that itâ€™s okay to go after what you want and donâ€™t let anybody tell you it canâ€™t be done.Â In my parents words â€œthe sky is the limit.â€Â I love meeting new people and talking with them about what they do, it inspires me both with my work and life.Â Life is too short, so do what you love.
Adversely, what has been your biggest vice?
I tend to get really creative and always trying to think outside of the box with Business Beware and other things I do.Â Iâ€™m always coming up with new ideas and others have to remind me, what you have is good!Â My programmer Shelley, always has to bring me back to reality with my creativeness when I get new ideas so I am thankful she keeps me straight with that.Â And with the creative thinking I will stay up late researching things and learning more even when Iâ€™m just flat out exhausted but what do you do? I love to learn!
What can we expect next from the talented Ashley Bodi in the near future?
I am truly focused with seeing Business Beware and the radio show through.Â I have a huge respect for business owners after seeing the other side and working for the family businesses.Â I respect my father and mother so much for what all they have endured and done for our family through their business.Â Any family or small business for that matter staying afloat right now with the economy is just amazing.Â A lot of that comes from the passion they have for what they do.Â I want to help businesses any way I can and let them know that no matter what business they have Business Beware has their back.Â Consumers have so many outlets where they can voice their thoughts about a business but why is it wrong if businesses want to warn each other about problem customers?Â Itâ€™s a two way street and even most customers would second that.Â We are not a blacklist site, itâ€™s about letting both sides communicate with each other and hopefully work out the situation and letting business owners know what theyâ€™re getting into before they do a job.Â The radio show is also something I really want to concentrate on.Â There is nothing else out there like it.Â No one is taking a stand to say â€œhey the customer is not always right.â€Â Our show is about the other side and why they are not always right and different situations where the customer has given the business a headache.Â Itâ€™s such an untouched topic because everyone wants to complain about how businesses did them wrong but the news never talks about what happens when the business owner gets scammed by a problem customer.Â So my focus at the moment is the site and the radio show and being a voice for businesses all across the country.Â And you never know I always have a few tricks up my sleeve, so watch out!
Everyone starts to feel burn out on a project every now and then. What do you do to keep yourself motivated and focused?
Everyone can always feel burned out at some point but honestly I have never felt that way with working on Business Beware.Â In the beginning I wonâ€™t lie that I felt like banging my head against the wall many times trying to create the site etc. but everyday itâ€™s a new day and I am motivated by those I meet and businesses I learn about.Â If I ever come to a bump in the road somehow it all works out, which is awesome.Â I think if you are truly passionate about what you do then you wonâ€™t get burned out you will look forward to every minute of every day and if you do go for a nice long run!
Can you give us three tools that you use every single day to make your life as a younggogetter more efficient, productive, or fun?
Oh man, I am such a technology fanatic itâ€™s sad.Â I donâ€™t know what I would do without my blackberry.Â Seriously, I try to keep a planner and I start out great but I always forget about it and donâ€™t use it.Â So I keep up with everything on my phone and with us being an online site email is such an essential to my everyday work.Â Itâ€™s awesome that I can check my emails no matter where I am and get back with people quickly.Â My computers are right up there too.Â I have a desktop pc and an Apple lap top (yeah I know itâ€™s like a double standard there).Â I use both to get things done throughout the day and while working on other projects I currently have going on.Â And of course we canâ€™t forget the iPod.Â I love music and itâ€™s amazing how music can put you in a certain mood.Â I use the iPod at the office and occasionally sing along (yeah itâ€™s not that pretty) because it keeps me focused and upbeat at the same time.Â Itâ€™s also my way to end the day with a nice run and the tunes pumping!
What is your favourite quote?
Ah, I have so many quotes I love and that motivate me but this one I always love, â€œThere is no such thing as limits to growth, because there are no limits to the human capacity for intelligence, imagination, and wonder.Â â€“Ronald Regan.â€
And last but not least, if you could give one piece of advice to fellow Young Go Getters, what would it be?
Never give up. It takes a lot to be an entrepreneur and many donâ€™t understand why you would want to go against the flow and do something on your own because itâ€™s risky. Well sure itâ€™s risky, anything you do in life is but to say that you built that business/company/organization is a great feeling. Donâ€™t let those people get you down when they are not on board with your ideas, they just are not in the same mind set as you and when they tell you it canâ€™t be done just reply with â€œwatch me.â€ Some of the biggest names today were turned down or told no many times before they succeeded and it can be tough to hear no but take that and let it drive you even more. When I get told no, I am moving on to the next person to say yes and my drive is stronger than ever and thatâ€™s how you have to be as an entrpreneur. Yes, you are going to hit some ruts but if we didnâ€™t have ruts on a mountain how would we be able to climb it? You canâ€™t climb a smooth surface mountain, itâ€™s impossible. So if you believe in something then go for it and donâ€™t let the others bring you down.
Tagged: clients, consumers, cool idea, interview, sales, success