All of us aspire to be successful. That would demand dedication, patience and hard work. eBrandz contacted Gene Chillemi, so that he may share with our readers his success secrets, and, business and personal philosophies.
Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business.
Unlimited Pots and Pans is a full service retailer of cooking pots and pans, cookware sets, food storage items and more. We offer products of the highest quality and durability from a number of well-known manufacturers, including such household names as Kinetic, Bonjour, Anolon and Rachel Ray. We are based in Marlboro, New Jersey.
Kindly give us a brief description about yourself.
Hi, my name is Gene Chillemi, creator and owner of Unlimitedpotsandpans.com. I have always been drawn to the entrepreneurial aspect of business. I joined the Electrical Union at the age of eighteen, maintained employment with that company for seventeen years, and became General Foreman in charge of 100+ men. I was also an integral part in developing strategic planning and marketing strategies of my wife’s pediatric dental practice; which helped develop it into a very successful venture.
What ignited the spark in you to start a new business venture?
After working seventeen years as an electrician, and my desire to start my own business, using extensive research I have identified the common necessities of the household, and that target market, brought me to Unlimitedpotsandpans.com
What three pieces of advice would you give to college students who want to become entrepreneurs?
Education, apprenticeship or work in your desired field, and most importantly be a very good listener and understand that you are never too smart to learn more and ask questions.
If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?
If I could start all over again, I would focus more on higher education,
What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?
Passion, the willingness to do what it takes to succeed, and a strong business plan with adequate financial backing.
How long do you stick with an idea before giving up?
I never give up. That burning desire to succeed and the unwillingness to fail is what keeps me motivated.
How many hours do you work a day on average?
When the business was new, I worked around 10 to 14 hours a day, now it depends on the necessity of the day.
What motivates you?
Family and passion are my motivations
How do you generate new ideas?
I follow trends, and try not to reinvent the wheel. I critique and modify successful ideas, while still providing the services that the customer requires.
What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?
My greatest fear is the same for most, the fear of failure. I manage that fear by giving 150% at everything I do, and channeling my “need-to-succeed” mentality.
What are your ideals?
My ideals are honesty, fairness and transparency.
How do you define success?
Success is not defined by how much money you have, but by the quality of the family and friends that surround you while you reach for your goals.
What is the best way to achieve long-term success?
The best way to achieve long-term success is by having a strong long-term business plan and creative marketing strategies.
How do you build a successful customer base?
We build our customer base by being professional, courteous, and delivering what we promise. It seems simple, but that is the root to building a loyal customer base.
Do you believe there is some sort of pattern or formula to becoming a successful entrepreneur?
I feel the pattern would change according to the individual business opportunities at hand.
Who has been your greatest inspiration?
My father has been a great inspiration to me. He became an entrepreneur at the age of 16. He had some challenges, but his successes always outweigh his challenges.
What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
My favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur is the freedom to work at and grow my business, and enjoy the fruits of my labor.
To what do you most attribute your success? What would you say are the five key elements for starting and running a successful business?
It starts with a successful business plan, the willingness to do what it takes to succeed, progressive marketing strategies, being honest and fair to your consumer, and having the financial backing to expedite your business plan.
What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?
Entrepreneurs are generally risk takers, and willing to put it all on the line for their goals. Workers are more conservative, and not willing to take on the stress and risk that is involved in owning your own business.
How do you go about marketing your business?
I hire marketing consulting firms that specialize in my field.
In one word characterize your life as an entrepreneur.
What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
In my free time, I like working on cars and spending time with my family
What makes you happy?
Success and my kids make me happy.
What sacrifices have you had to make to be a successful entrepreneur?
I sacrificed a successful, stable, high paying job with the electrical union, to go after my dreams.
Where do you see yourself and your business in 10 years? 20 years?
In 10 years I see myself controlling several different divisions in the home product field. In 20 years, sitting on a beach with a pina colada!