By Mike Evans, Founder
2019 was an incredible year at Fixer.
Sometime back in October, we entered our “Golden Age.” A few lucky startups get to experience this incredible time. The hustle of the early days is behind us — we’re not just throwing things on the wall and seeing (hoping… praying) that something sticks. No, now we’ve got something. That something is special, and customers love it and value it (and pay for it) and we love creating it. The tough work of optimization and the challenges of large scale are still a few years out. We’re in this incredible place of the in-between, where every individual contributor can shape the course of the company, but nobody is alone.
What got us here, to this golden age? What milestones passed by as we hit our stride? How do I know we entered it?
I see it in the growing diversity of our team; the number of training classes completed; our growing customer base; and our excellent customer feedback.
In other ways, it’s a feeling: There’s a spark in every meeting and interaction. People believe in what we’re doing, and for good reason: We worked hard early on to establish our values, and our dual mission of returning profit to shareholders while increasing the skill, diversity, and number of tradespeople in the communities we serve — and it shows.
I can see that we’re on to something — thousands of new customers tried us out, and thousands of repeating customers invited us back into our homes. Our quality work garnered an outrageously high percentage of 5 star customer reviews and earned hundreds of referrals. We have worked so hard this year on every element of delivering a superior customer experience, and it means the world to see that paying off.
Staying true to our mission
And here’s what we accomplished here at Fixer that our customers don’t readily see, but are so important to our mission of building people:
We launched our training center on January 1, 2019 with the goal of providing paid training and skills certification for a new generation of Fixers where traditional trade education has fallen flat.
In our first year of the center, we ran three training cohorts and hired 17 of those trainees here at Fixer full-time. 24% of those graduates to full-time are women (our goal is to reach 50%)
We launched our continuing education programs to increase the trade, customer and business skills of our experienced Fixers and promoted several Fixers to management roles within the organization.
We increased Fixer compensation by over 10% and continue to add meaningful benefits such as paid parental leave
We achieved 4.5/5 on Yelp
We achieved 4.7/5 on HomeAdvisor
We achieved 4.7/5 on Thumbtack
I can’t help but think about what’s ahead, so much more we are setting out to accomplish — so much of this is based off of one single thread running through each of the highlights of 2019: Listening and Learning. We listened to our applicants, trainees, Fixers and customers, and boy, we learned – each individual, and the company as a whole. And each time we do, we get better at what we do. We increased our opportunity, as individuals, and as a company.
To 2019, a year of learning for Fixer, and for Fixers.