Celebrating 5 Years
Friday, January 05, 2018
Prairie Staffing is celebrating 5 years in 2018. Here's a Q&A with Owner and Chief Staffing Executive Jason Edge.
InBusiness Madison magazine, January, 2018.
This year is Prairie Staffing's 5th Anniversary. What comes to mind when you think about that?
It makes me think about how far I have come personally, from working for someone else realizing their business objectives, to realizing some of my life goals while helping clients realize their business objectives.
What made you start Prairie Staffing? Where did you draw inspiration?
I started Prairie Staffing because it was time to work in the industry from a different perspective, and for clients who needed that new perspective. I grew up watching my dad work as a headhunter and have been in some staffing industry capacity myself since the 90s, so I figured it was time to give my own agency a chance.
What were your visions in 2013 and how have you met them or even surpassed those visions?
I knew that we could do a fraction of the amount of business that we did in my regional role working for a national player and still make a living. Indeed that was true, but I think that I had visions de grandeur at first. I mean, I knew it would be hard work, but I imagined the sales process, and gaining clients to be easier, and to be a larger agency at this point in time. On the other hand, I am aware of small business mortality rates, and knew in the back of my head that was always a possibility, but we are still here.
In what different ways have you grown Prairie Staffing over the past 5 years?
Not taking a paycheck at first was challenging, but consistently building a client-base, and grinding away to acquire the talent they were looking for turned that around. There is still plenty of room to grow, and we could definitely handle more.
What do you see as the biggest accomplishment since your start in 2013?
I have always seen myself as more of an old fashioned headhunter than a typical quota-driven recruiter at a staffing agency. I knew we could fill some of those unique, hard-to-fill positions, and we have done so, on a number of occasions. I think that's why some businesses like working with us even though they also partner with larger agencies that have more resources.
What is your favorite part about your job? What excites you most?
I absolutely love getting a new order, especially if there is some challenge to it. Coming to work every day with the possibility of hearing from a new or existing client with a new need is what keeps me going.
What other CEO’s do you look up to and who has inspired you? Who is your business role model?
I draw inspiration from many avenues, and like a lot of small business owners, have grown to observe everyone and everything I see in the small business world and try to learn from it. I watch everything serial entrepreneur Marcus Lemonis does as well, trying to utilize his principles to better myself and my business.
What is the best piece of leadership advice you have received?
"It's all about the people, the product, and the process." - Marcus Lemonis
"Mind your pennies and your dollars will take care of themselves" - Ben Franklin
Where do you expect to go in the next 5 years? In what ways do you expect to grow?
We've experienced growth every year in existence, and it will be very difficult to top 2017, but I would like to expand the client-base in 2018, both locally because I know the product we have to offer has value to many businesses right here in the Madison area, and by reaching other regions like the Milwaukee or Fox Valley areas. It will take the right, unique person or client to help make that possibility a reality.