Happy International Women's Day
Today is International Women’s Day around the world and we would be amiss to not recognize the amazing women who have been a part of building PBJ Cleaning Depot, with their time, energy, talent, ideas and leadership. I’d like to take a moment to recognize the following women.
First and foremost, my wife Bobbi Jo, with whom I can do nothing without. The biggest support and strength in my life.
Also, our fantastic, hard working staff:
Tiff Henry-- Operations Manager
Torie Machan-- Office / Logistics Manager
Danielle Howard-- Business Solutions Manager
Katie Weed-- Project Manager
Danielle Niesen-- Warehouse Manager
Kaitlyn Kilgour-- Inside Sales Contact
Taylor Danbrook-- Sales Representative
And now, for the surprise of the century, you get to hear from Bobbi Jo herself on all things being a woman, building a business and doing it all with balance. Over to you Bobbi Jo!
So I was given some questions to answer, and I’m going to try and be as honest as possible. So first question was, (typical)
Describe yourself in a nutshell…
Well, Paul says kind and compassionate LOL… So sweet. I’d say, I’m a person who’s willing to help, organize, and dig in when asked. I’m not your leader, but I’m a great follower—good worker, and I’ll give you all that I can. You may think it’s strange that I’d highlight being a follower on International Women’s Day, but I think that’s actually quite important. I see International Women’s Day as a day where we can celebrate being the best version of ourselves as Women, and being proud of that. We all have different strengths to bring to life and the lives of those around us—own that!
Next questions were some funny ones…
Favorite food? I love the taste of smoked meat on a Traeger. LOL. Or a treat from the Keg J (Paul are you reading this?)
Gardening (I get all my tools from PBJ…wink wink)
Biggest pet peeve?
People who are late.....Id rather be 15 min early than 5 min late....it’s just how I was made!!
AND CAT HAIR!!!! (from our own cat)
Okay on to some more serious stuff—
It being international women’s day, can you tell us a bit about your experience building a business alongside your husband from the perspective of a woman?
Well for us, family always came first… in a world where everything wants priority in your life, our first commitment was to our family, whether our son, our parents or extended family. It’s important to set your priorities and values in life, and stay accountable to them. If you don’t know what’s priority and you haven’t set that out clearly, it’s easy to get distracted in today’s society. Now don’t get me wrong, the business was always a priority too, but somethings are just more important.
Building a business isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. The budget was tight and it wasn't always easy… Success in any area of life, takes hard work. Family and business alike. Paul did everything from 6am to 5pm so I made sure life at home was as balanced as possible. We always prioritized spending time together in the evening. We could always balance problems off each other and figure it out. It’s important to be flexible.
Do you have one funny memory or story from your years building PBJ?
The Part time youth at PBJ make the days fun for the staff...
Elf on a Shelf with 2 of our high school boys a few years ago was a riot.
Getting vans stuck in bits of snow… there’s been a lot of laughs.
But one of our first big happy times was when we put an ad out for our first driver…
Paul came home with a resume and we were both so happy to have this first driver join our team.
He came with business knowledge and a willingness to go where needed. He was a blessing. Hold on to these moments in whatever it is that you’re building.
How did being a woman add unique value to growing your business?
My parents are from Howick Twp, growing up on a farm. Teaches you the importance of commitment and hard work. Work was very important, hard work, and chores had to be done. That's how the bills got paid. I value that as a woman and have brought those life lessons and values into my everyday life and business.
You’re also a mom and wife— how did you balance all things well? Any tips?
Being a Mom and a wife… it was good. Paul was always supportive and helpful. If I was running our son, he looked after things at home. If he was working late I did what needed to be done. Marriage is a beautiful thing—you’ve got a forever teammate.
And through it all, wearing so many hats— how do you stay true to you? Bobby Jo.
That's what family does…. keeps you true to who you are. We have family as employees who are immensely important to us. This is our baby… our everything we have put into this....and you know your family is always behind you 100%
Last words of advice to all the women out there?
It will work out, if it’s meant to be.
Somethings come and go, and you gotta think it wasn't meant to be but the next door will open and the time will be right for us. Our family and faith, hard work and dedication is what has gotten us through, and it will help you get there too.