In 1982, a good friend of mine introduced me to the home improvement business. He and I worked all summer doing small to medium repair jobs for homeowners in the New Orleans area where I was born and lived at the time. I thoroughly enjoyed the work and the interaction of dealing with homeowners and helping them with their problems and dreams concerning their homes. One thing led to another and I found myself working for Sears in 1984 selling replacement windows, fencing, roofing and central heat and air conditioning. I learned an awful lot while with Sears and stayed with them for 8 years. I was promoted twice, once moving to Tulsa, Oklahoma and then a year later to Kansas City where I live with my wife of 32 years. However, the amount of driving that we were required to do 6 days a week covering half of Kansas and a 1/3 of Missouri began to wear on my young family and me. At that time, we had two children, both in grade school, and I wasn’t seeing much of them. So in 1992 I left Sears to join another company that promised me that I would only be working in the Greater Kansas City area. They specialized in replacement windows, vinyl siding and patio rooms. It turned out that what they told me about the driving was true but the business was all about high-pressure sales, long drawn out presentations, hiring telemarketers to schedule my appointments, and sub-contractors doing fly-by-night work. Then there was the collecting money up front, with the hopes that the installers would actually show up.
Needless to say that philosophy on business did not match my philosophy of putting customers first. After 3 years, I knew I needed to go a different direction so I left the business and took 6 months off. During those 6 months, I did some soul searching and decided that I would not return to any company that had to operate in that fashion. The problem was that all of the companies that I spoke to had a similar approach - pressuring the customer to make a decision while I was in their home and going on appointments that should have never been set. So in early 1996 with my wife’s support, I decided to start my own window replacement business.
I started building up my business one customer at a time. I had gone back to selling the products and also installing them. My world finally seemed to be in balance again! I actually looked forward to getting up each morning and going to work. I met some wonderful people and many of them became customers of mine and they referred me to friends and relatives for more work.
In 2007, I talked with a very good friend of mine in Columbus, Mr. Dan Wolt. Dan told me about his window company, Zen Windows. I was so intrigued with the idea that I drove out to visit with him and eventually he invited me to become a Zen Windows dealer in Kansas City.
So now my life is very simple, I am very happy, I am spending more time with my wife, I am selling high quality windows to very nice people and enjoy every day so much more. I follow Dan’s window philosophy; I do business my way, with respect for the customer. With all the benefits of the Internet and a simple phone conversation I provide a quote, and if they decide to honor me with their business, they get their replacement windows in about 3 weeks, and my customer pays me after they are installed and they are completely satisfied.
My name is John Sims. My company is Zen Windows Kansas City.
If you want to know more, send me a message, and I’ll answer.