As the founder and CEO of JMD Furniture, Dev Joshi has adopted a leadership strategy that strikes an ideal balance between the values upon which his company was originally founded and the need to evolve based on the feedback provided by customers. This strategy is part of the reason the company has enjoyed so much success in the DC Metro area since it was founded by Dev and his family Ritu Joshi, Preeti Joshi, Narender Joshi and Sunita Joshi more than a decade ago.
A highly skilled entrepreneur and a Sales Expert, Dev brings a unique skill set to his role as founder and CEO. Drawing on his expertise in computer science, graphic design, marketing, and management, Dev and his family Ritu Joshi, Preeti Joshi, Narender Joshi and Sunita Joshi have built a furniture company that is recognized throughout the Northeastern region of the country for its elegance, trustworthiness, and commitment to customer service.
Where did the idea for JMD Furniture come from?
The idea for JMD Furniture began as a general concept for a business built around the phrase “Jai Mata Di,” which is a Hindi expression that translates to “Hail to the greatest mother of all.” Along with the literal meaning, it’s usually associated with the desire to foster positive vibes in one another, and I felt that a company built around this core concept could thrive as a result.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
We’ve grown so much over the past decade or so, but I still spend a lot of my time working on strategies that will foster growth and improve customer service. I’m more productive without a heavily regimented schedule; I’d rather loosely organize my schedule according to the specific goals I’ve set for that particular day.
How do you bring ideas to life?
My best ideas come from extended periods of reflection or quiet contemplation, but I should add that a lot of our success is the product of simply listening to the feedback our customers provide.
What’s one trend that excites you?
It seems to me that more entrepreneurs are playing an active role in shaping company identity through marketing and other strategies, which I find exciting. I also feel the absolute need for a company to expand. If any company stays the way it is for more than a specific time period, with the same revenue, it will cease to exist at one point.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I don’t stop learning. I read and train daily, and I have an urgent need to get tasks done. I never add time to my decisions, and more importantly, I feel the urgent need to take responsibility as a duty, not as an option. Many entrepreneur’s just take it as an option to take the weekends off when their company is in a struggle and that’s absolutely wrong. They are just doing exactly what everyone is doing, and after some time they will fail at their task. If my company needs me to attend to it at 12:00am at night, I will be there. If it requires me to be there on weekends, I will be there, as it is my duty to myself and my company.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Quit complaining about things that don’t make you money. Get new friends, because the ones you currently have are dead broke, not just financially, they are mentally broke. Quit taking so much time to make important decisions, and realize that growing is a great thing. It is essential; it is not an option.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I strongly believe that it doesn’t matter what you do in business professionally, or what you do at home, everything needs to be tracked, documented, and there needs to be someone that checks on you to makes sure you are doing it right at all times. At work, I can enforce these tactics of good leadership to my employees, but this doesn’t just stop at work. It goes beyond to being at home too. I need to make sure that I am good father at all times. I need to make sure I am a great son and a great husband.
If those goals aren’t there, then at one point you will fail at them. Besides that, someone including yourself needs to be making sure you are doing that daily. Not just once a month, you need to be a great husband daily, and if you wife tells you that you are not, she is doing a great thing. Get Great, and make sure someone is tracking your progress besides yourself. Many people do not agree with this strategy, and I just recently proved them wrong, as I tracked my weight loss, and I tracked daily activities. While many failed to lose 20 lbs in 3 years, I did so in 3 months. All that happened just by following the simple rules above.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I always show up to work, even if I am sick, and I can’t perform regular activities, I show up if its snowing; I show up if there’s a blizzard. I show up if my car gets towed; I show up regardless. If you don’t have that type of commitment to your work, then you are not in the game, and you take work as an option.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
We emphasize customer service in everything we do, and we go to great lengths to show our customers that we really mean it. Every company says they care about customer service for marketing purposes, but we back it up with actions that prove just how much we care about the service our customers receive. It’s all about the customer, and you making sure you give them the best service. Another thing that I’ve implemented is spending time and money to train my employees in Sales and Servicing.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
We were a very small company when we first started out, and, at least initially, I struggled to find the right approach that would enable us to adhere to our core principles while remaining flexible enough to evolve based on customer feedback or changes in the market. After discussing this with a few trusted employee,s as well as some of our most loyal customers, I was able to develop the approach that we still use today.
Secondly, I stayed small for too long. I got my advice from people that were broken minded and had never done anything successful. For someone reading this, please know, that you should never take advice from someone that hasn’t done anything in their life. The reason is simple: It will be dumb advice.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Money exists everywhere you look and there isn’t a shortage of money. Small businesses often miss out on scaling opportunities, but the tech we have today makes scaling so much simpler. I’d build a company that specializes in helping small businesses with scalability issues.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
$100 won’t get you anywhere to be honest. I recently spent $54,000 to train myself and my employees in sales and in efficiency. More importantly, it will be used so that our fundamentals are passed on to all of our employees. Besides that, I recently spent $4,150 on Grant Cardone’s conference in Vegas for personal and professional growth.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
My computer science background has allowed me to either create or modify the software we use so it is precisely suited to our needs, which is really beneficial from a productivity standpoint. I also like to read books, but more importantly I love to use youtube and social mediums to gain knowledge. While many use this to be entertained, I use it to my advantage to get further in life.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“10X Rule” by Grant Cardone. It will teach you to make millions and put you in the right mindset.
What is your favorite quote?
I’m paraphrasing from memory, but Grant Cardone says, “Pay the price today, so you can pay any price tomorrow.” He also says that being great at something is a duty, not an option. The people that take it as an option never get paid, and the ones that are great always get paid. “So Be Great, Because Nothing Else Pays.”
• Growing is an essential piece to success, it is not an option. It is not a choice, it isn’t even something you can ignore. It has to be done, otherwise you will cease to exist.
• Great leaders don’t add time to equations. Once they see a good deal, they act fast, and they are ready to take the consequences.
• Seek out learning opportunities whenever possible; the best entrepreneurs remain committed to ongoing education and development long after they’ve achieved success.
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Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.