Finding a concrete contractor who is equal parts artist and blue collar worker is about as easy as finding Mr. Wright. Literally. Robert Wright started Wrights Concrete in 2000 and has grown it into $1M/yr. business since 2004. Mr. Wright, as he is known, may be a concrete guy, but he is first and foremost a businessman. He carries 5-6 full time employees and most have been with him for many years.
After working for Fairfax County for over 20 years, Mr. Wright realized that if he was going to make the kind of money he needed to make so his wife could stay at home and raise their 2 boys, he was going to need to take an early retirement and start his own business. Leaving Fairfax County was an easy decision. If there is one thing Mr. Wright knows, it’s how to grow. The economy was good in 2000 and Mr. Wright made the best of it. “The best way to overcome fear is with knowledge.” And Mr. Wright knows quality concrete work.
Wrights Concrete produces some of the best exposed stone, brick, and concrete work in the area. His work can be seen throughout all of Fairfax County and anywhere within a 30-mile radius. When you see his work, you know immediately that he has an eye for details and design. “When I talk to someone about a job, I already see the picture in my mind,” said Mr. Wright. “The whole thing is already created in my mind.”
How did Wrights Concrete become so successful so fast? Mr. Wright says is because he values Customer Service above all else. Even difficult customers are treated fairly and with respect. The other side of the success coin is the employees of Wrights Concrete. When asked about how he keeps his employees happy when other companies experience high turnover, Mr. Wright said he simply picks people who care about quality and he treats them with respect. He is also a believer in incentives. He’s given top employees significant year-end bonuses – even in a couple of down years.
Mr. Wright is a Big Fish
Mr. Wright’s father once said to him, “The big fish always eat the little fish” and to this day, Mr. Wright knows what pond he’s swimming in. He’s stuck to his core business year after year and it has served him well. His company has grown steadily and so have the scope of his business. Starting as a residential concrete company, Wrights Concrete now does a good chuck of commercial concrete work. Mr. Wright has come a long way since starting the business with minimal tools. He started with just a concrete saw, then added a truck, then a compressor and more machinery and equipment. The company now buys supplies for its equipment in bulk.
Mr. Wright says he is not retiring anytime soon. “I’ll probably work until 3 days before my funeral,” said Mr. Wright. He has 2 sons and is hoping one of them will take it over someday. But he’s not waiting around. He’s still trying to grow. His goal in the next few years is to accumulate 7-10 rental properties to support his family and keep expanding his concrete company. No doubt he will be successful. He’s swimming with some pretty big fish these days.