Before he began HouseDigital, Adam Goldfelder was a kindergarten instructor.
His expertise in schooling might clarify why he’s discovered it straightforward to interrupt down know-how and “super-geeky stuff,” explaining it to others in phrases they might perceive.
“I was the geek kid that would take apart the telephone, stereos and calculators and put them back together. When I was teaching, the iPod first came out and I was given one of the first digital cameras, and I sensed where the industry was going. I took that hobby of being a tinkerer and the ability to understand electronics and explain it to people, and I put that all together,” says Goldfelder, a Brighton resident.
HouseDigital sells choose merchandise — residence theaters, lighting management methods, residence surveillance, whole-house audio techniques and extra — installs and educates clients on their use, and helps these techniques as soon as in place.
Goldfelder, now 45, started the corporate in 2003, and the enterprise mannequin at the moment was targeted largely on new house builds. After the housing market crashed a handful of years later, the president/CEO needed to come up with a brand new plan.
Today, the enterprise is predicated on 60 % residential work and 40 % business work. Recent tasks accomplished embrace work on the new Scott Miller Salon & Spa location and a brand new showroom for Ralph Honda.
We spoke with Goldfelder just lately about discovering his groove, the subsequent huge factor in electronics and extra.
His prediction for “the next big thing:” “It’s very rare that a new product comes out that excites me. I think the Amazon Echo was a game changer — real voice-activation for the house. It was the first time that I’m like, ‘Wait a second, I’m having a conversation with a device, and she’s actually replying to me.’ We use a product by Sony called Sonos, which sends music through the house. Starting next year, you can talk to the Amazon Echo, and she’ll control the sound speaker. She’ll also talk to your garage door opener and your lights. It’s not quite there yet, but I guarantee it will get there.”
Shifting focus: “We used to do a lot of new builds. I had a lot of employees and vans, and we were providing the infrastructure wiring for pretty much all of the new builds in Rochester. I learned the hard way that that wasn’t really the right model. When the company’s not profitable, you’re not doing something right. That model completely shifted. We still do some fun new builds, but we prefer to do a remodel or a residential retrofit. I don’t miss that new-build work at all. It was much more volume, and the builders were in charge of how busy you were.”
His gross sales strategy: “I’m the sales guy for the company — 99 percent of my business is referrals and repeat business. I grew up in Rochester. When you do right by people, they refer. We’ve been very philanthropic, and I think that’s a good way to get business. By giving away money to organizations I believe in and that are doing right by people, oftentimes you will get business out of that, from those relationships. I’ve been on the board for the Memorial Art Gallery for seven or eight years.”
Finding his groove: “Perseverance — that’s what it really comes down to. You have to stay at it. I’ve had a really good five, six years. You get to that point, you get past the really tough times, which is the first five years, and you’re either in or out. Fortunately, I’m in. It’s really been a lot of fun these last five, six years when you round that corner, and you realize you did it. I’ve paid off all my initial loans. When you get to that groove, there’s nothing like it.”
An entrepreneurial household tree: “My grandfather and father were entrepreneurs, and I guess I’ve always had that entrepreneurial spirit. If you have an idea and you surround yourself with the right people and you really stick at it, there’s nothing like it. You wake up with an idea, and then 11, 12 years later, it’s hard to believe what can happen. It’s a beautiful thing. My grandfather owned a candy store in Manhattan, and my father owned Fabrics and Findings, a retail store in Rochester.”
For info: HouseDigital, 250 N. Goodman St., Suite #412, Rochester, NY 14607. Call (585) 271-4640 or go to www.myhousedigital.com.
Jinelle Shengulette is a Rochester-area freelance author.
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