A man wakes up smelling the salt in the air. He can see the marine layer of fog still hovering over the ocean. He arrives at work where he greets everyone he sees by name, and they greet him right back.
“Profit is up 50 percent from last year,” an employee tells him.
Owning a successful and growing business in the heart of Oceanside, Calif., a popular beachfront city, sounds pretty close to the American dream.
For Mike Glanz, the co-founder and CEO of HireAHelper.com, a dream has become his reality and everyday life, though it did not come easily.
The story of Glanz’s company ‘HireAHelper’ begins at California Baptist University, where Glanz and his co-founder met, and the idea for a moving labor marketplace was born. Glanz grad- uated in 2006 and launched his company a year later.
Instead of hiring full-service movers, Glanz and his co-founder thought it would be more efficient for people to get their own trucks and hire college students to do all the moving. This way, consumers would get a “full service move at a do-it-yourself price,” Glanz said.
His business is similar to that of a hotel comparison and booking website, as consumers are able to compare moving helpers and book their moving labor while en- joying a stress-free move.
Although Glanz said the business “grew fast right out of the gate,” he faced sever- al trials with starting up the business, including getting sued by the multi-national moving company U-Haul.
In the beginning stages of the business, HireAHelper advertised that they provided “moving help,” unknowingly infringing on a phrase trademarked by U-Haul. Nine months into the business, with only $2,000 to $3,000 in revenue generated each month, HireA- Helper faced up to $15,000 in legal fees each month from U-Haul.
Glanz and his partner did not give up the fight, but instead put their effort into growing their new business and fighting the six legal claims U-Haul had filed against them.
“(U-Haul) did every single thing they could do to throw legal fees at us—that was the path they were taking,” Glanz said.
Being found guilty of just one of the claims meant the end of HireAHelper.
It took a total of three years for U-Haul to finally agree to a settlement with HireAHelper, and it was only after all six of the claims were found in Glanz’s favor.
Despite the initial tribulations, HireAHelper was able to continue growing into a nationally recognized business, with more than 8,000 service providers. “The majority of success in running your own business comes from trial and error,”
Glanz said. “It’s probably a lot easier than you think, and it’s probably a lot more work than you think.”
Starting a business can be an uphill battle, filled with challenges, but also rewards. Glanz proves that with God, focus and determination, any mountain can be conquered. His business is proof of a dream come true.