An automotive-repair store owner talks shop about building strong relationships with customers, business goals and ‘going to look for America’ on his motorcycle.
Name: Will Farrow
Business: Big Lake Cycle
Location: Superior, Wisconsin
What’s your favorite thing to do on
It’s dealing with customers, really. I like to
talk with them. Everyone that rides a motorcycle has stories: about riding, situations
that have come up on the road. I get a kick
out of listening to them and telling them my
own stories. I have been riding for a long
time, so I have some stories, too.
What is your proudest moment as a
small business owner?
Knowing that we did good work. I’m really
proud of that. I like when a Harley rolls out of the door and knowing that my mechanics
have done a good job. Some shops will hit you hard when you come in. They try to grab
all they can the first time. I’d rather treat the
customer right and get them to come back
multiple times. So I try to make sure the
customer is aware of what’s going on. I keep
them in the loop and call them when I figure
out what’s going on. I tell them, “I won’t
spend any of your money until you tell me to
spend it.” They seem to like that.
What have you not yet achieved
that you would like to?
I want to own a part of our country. I want it so I don’t have a lot of competition in the
area. People are touchy about their motorcycles. They find someplace they like and go back there all the time. If you have a motorcycle, snow machine, wheeler, and it needs
repair—I want you to automatically think of
us. I want to own this part of the country.
What does owning a business
allow you to do that most folks do
not get to enjoy?
I like having the freedom to come and go as
I need. I work long hours. Yet, I can take a
day off here and there when I need to. I love
motorcycles, and I like being able to get out
and ride. I hit the back roads and cruise. I
call it “going to look for America.”