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Elliot Laniado: Not Taking No for an Answer

Window treatments for profit - 1

Recapping Episode 102

This episode's guest star is Elliot Laniado, founder, and owner of Window Treats Inc. He is a self-starter who never took no for an answer in the window treatments industry. Elliot rose to success from humble beginnings as a 'man in a van' to the bedrock of a growing business consisting of welcoming and ambitious professionals. His business is located in New Jersey and has been an established company for more than 27 years. Elliot's business philosophy revolves around providing outstanding customer service and creating a positive impact on his family and the families and lives of his employees.

Window treatments were not Elliot's lifelong passion. Instead, his business stemmed from the need to care for his loved ones. This mindset allows Elliot to see other window treatment industry professionals not as competitors but as individuals who want to help their community. As he says: "there is enough business for everyone.'

 

The Beginning of His Journey

One of Elliot's first customers, a neighbor, requested a product Elliot was not yet familiar with, motorized silhouettes. Elliot worked quickly to learn by reaching out to others in the industry and teamed up with an outside electrician. From this point onwards, Elliot decided to make community, relationships, and collaboration the core of his company's values, along with a 'can do' and 'solution-oriented' mindset. Elliot developed a reputation in the industry as an expert as he took on increasingly more challenging drapery and shade requests.

Elliot would search for solutions through his network and industry resources. The Window Coverings Association of America (WCAA) has many web recordings, written resources, and much more that can offer opportunities to learn and grow one's knowledge in this industry. Through this education platform and other associations and resources, Elliot was able to further his knowledge base and create networking relationships that have lasted him the entirety of his career.

 

Moving Foreward

In 2006, Elliot joined the business network and educational organization Exciting Windows. This new relationship is one of the components that propelled him into a managed, growing business. Exciting Windows offers national knowledge gathered from window treatment dealers throughout the country. They track trends and best practices and provide networking opportunities with like-minded window treatment business owners.

At a pivotal point in his journey, Elliot recalls just how important it can be to avoid self-sabotage. As he was deciding whether or not to sign a lease and open a new storefront, his mind kept switching back and forth on whether or not he should move the showroom to the retail street-level space. A past mentor told Elliot, "You have to make the decision. Whether it's right or wrong, you need to move forward. And if it's the right decision, great. If it's the wrong decision, you can go ahead and then change it again."

The business had many challenges, and through them, Elliot sought mentorship, coaching, and help from friends. He kept moving forward, never standing still, always connecting with the community and seeking opportunities to grow and find alternative solutions. All jobs and businesses have struggles and ups and downs, and one should always keep moving, seeking advice and connecting with others who may have ideas of how we can improve and take our business to the next level. This idea goes beyond business for Elliot and into his personal life, where he also sought coaches and nutritionists.

One of the key lessons from these coaches was that it is okay if a decision is incorrect and that knowledge of what did not work will inform a new decision that will lead you down a new path. The lesson here is that there will always be a time when you feel unable to make an important decision, and it's okay to honor the process of gaining background information. Still, ultimately, you need to avoid delay and move forward. From his relationships to his career, Elliot encourages everyone to always move forward with intention. As Elliot often says: "we strive for excellence; perfection is not attainable."

Elliot's business philosophies go far beyond window treatments on their own. Still, they can expand to everyday life and into whatever career you are pursuing, and anyone can benefit from following this mindset.

 

WANT TO LEARN MORE

To learn more about Elliot Laniado business journey, and learn about leveraging community networks, and how to move forward in difficult times listen to the full podcast here