A quick Google search of the word “vision” leads you to the following definition: “The ability to think about or plan the future with imagination or wisdom.”
David Roberts with Blue Collar Consulting has built a career on the basic premise of this definition. Small in stature but big in personality, positive energy, and in building relationships, David uses his own knowledge and professional experiences to help others visualize and achieve success in their businesses.
“Most people never think about the work that goes in to starting, growing, and sustaining a successful business. We often see the work a business does or a product they represent, but never give thought to the people working on building and improving the business itself,” says Roberts. He even has a phrase he references to help drive this point home to his prospective clients: “It’s nearly impossible to work ON the business while you are working IN it!”
This is something he knows from firsthand experience. David started with a local technology integration firm after graduating high school and served in every capacity over his 21-year career. “I started as a helper technician, then served as an estimator, general manager, operations manager, and vice president, before being named COO in 2012.”
He was part of the ownership team that sold the business to a public company in 2019. “The company was newly founded when I started working there,” remembers Roberts. “I was 18 years old, and I thought it would be a fun job until I figured out what to do with my life. What we were able to accomplish over the next twenty-plus years is something I’m extremely proud of, and I will always be thankful to have been a part of it.”
Using his professional experience, combined with a passion for helping others, David founded Blue Collar Consulting in 2020 amid the initial phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. While he recognizes the timing posed a few initial challenges, Roberts also explains how it solidified the idea of his brand. “Obviously, a lot of people thought I was crazy to start a business as the world was experiencing challenges none of us could have ever imagined, but it also helped to spotlight the exact reason I founded the company. Regardless of size, experience, or vertical, every business will face challenges,” explains Roberts.
“Some of those obstacles are expected, while others are completely unexpected—like the pandemic. Either way, overcoming each of them is paramount to the growth and sustained success of a business.”
Given the “Blue Collar” name, one can’t help but wonder if it is indicative of the type of businesses they work with. “The blue-collar ideology is something I’m super passionate about,” says David. “I grew up in a blue-collar household, was raised in a blue-collar neighborhood, and have been surrounded by blue-collar people my entire life.It has proven invaluable to my own success. And I truly believe there is a blue-collar component to every single business and business leader,” he explains. “That’s the reason for the name.”
He has worked with all the traditional blue-collar trades (mechanical, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, contractors, etc.) but also works with many other business types. Over the last three and a half years he has built an impressive client list that also includes those in the food service industry, real estate brokerages, financial institutions, wealth management firms, and software development companies, just to name a few. During this timeframe, he has also successfully helped to facilitate several acquisitions, both as a buy and sell side representative to his clients. Roberts expounds on the idea that his service offerings truly encompass the full life of any business.
“Your plan has to be rock solid the whole way through, literally from start to finish.” He continues, “I work with owners and operators at every stage of a business and serve as an advisor to help them identify and overcome challenges, which in turn allows them to expedite growth and profitability.
“In the early stages, I typically help build a business plan, file incorporation documents, or assist with creating marketing materials. In the development stages, it usually consists of sales training, operational efficiencies, financial analysis or modeling, and leadership coaching. And in the final stages of a business,” which he quickly mentions is equally important but the least discussed, “I help clients develop a successful exit strategy. This can be achieved in many ways but commonly is a family succession plan, management buyout, or a strategic acquisition.”
As Arkansas’s only growth consulting firm, Blue Collar Consulting is dedicated to helping your business reach its full potential. Pricing varies from service to service, with monthly consultative packages available as well. For those interested in learning more about these offerings, more information can be found online at bluecollargrowth.com or by calling David directly at 501.529.6600.