“If you want to reach your potential and become the person you were created to be, you must do much more than just experience life and hope that you learn what you need along the way. You must go out of your way to seize growth opportunities as if your future depended on it.”
John Maxwell made this statement in his book, ‘The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential,’ and this quote is closely aligned with the path that Mr. Andre Cummings, the Chief Executive Officer of ‘Floor It Guyana’ and ‘ Hardware Solutions Depot’ has taken as a businessman.
Mr. Cummings describes his Georgetown, Guyana businesses as ‘Lifestyle Businesses’ which go above the ordinary, setting the bar of quality at peak point.
“Floor It Guyana is mainly in the lifestyle business in the sense that we provide exotic hardwood flooring to our clients. Apart from hardwood floorings, we provide kitchen cabinets and closets and hardwood doors. And these really are for clients who are very discerning and want something to be different from everyone else,” he proudly shared.
‘Floor It Guyana’ falls under the umbrella of its parent company, ‘Cummings Wood Products’. While ‘Floor It’ began operations in 2007, the parent company was established in 2008. “We started in 2008, actually, exporting hardwood lumber to Trinidad only at that time and then we started to increase our market reach over the years into most Caribbean Islands, also into the U.S and New Zealand,” the CEO explained. However, seeing the demand for quality flooring locally, the businessman seized the business opportunity and made the investment, reflecting, “…because of the local demand for a proper Flooring–we are talking about Kiln-Dried flooring–and also to offer installation services, that’s when in 2007 the idea came and Floor It came into being.”
After eight years as a businessman, Mr. Cummings saw another opportunity–growth. Growth, not only for his business, but for himself–his leadership and management skills. In 2016, he got connected with ActionCOACH Guyana, a business coaching firm consisting of Certified Business Coaching Teams who help business owners from all industries to push their businesses to meet their full potential.
He reminisced, “What drew me to ActionCOACH is…they speak about getting better at business, they speak about creating a profitable enterprise that works without you. And if you look at the testimonials that Action Coach has, many, many businesses–Small, Medium and Large –will talk about the development and how working with ActionCOACH changed their business from the ordinary to the extraordinary.” The results were rewarding. “Over the years, my business has grown tremendously. Not only my business but my personal life as well,” he said.
“Having an ActionCOACH, they really ask you the right questions to bring out the ideas in you and of course I see myself and the business growing exponentially and as the years roll on, increasing our product line, increasing our market reach and really standing above all others in the industry. And with the help of ActionCOACH, that is very, very possible because you are being held accountable, you are being taught new strategies,” he continued.
True to his vision of “growing exponentially,” two months ago, ‘Hardware Solutions Depot’ began operations. “This company was mainly started to introduce our products to our valued clients, and there again we look for brands that are aligned with our philosophy in terms of customer satisfaction and product differentiation,” he disclosed. The business is the distributor of Domus products– uPVC windows and doors. “We’ve been branching into other products like granite, countertops, high-end door locks,” he also shared, adding, “So, we have really positioned ourselves to serve a particular market that really, as I mentioned, want to be different from the average.”
Because of the nature of his business, Mr. Cummings is giving back to his country–not just with investment, directly–but he is creating employment for Guyanese. He goes a step further, taking every opportunity to give back to vulnerable groups, his most recent initiative being donations to a back-to-school drive for a hinterland community. This is not just aimed at giving back, but to also motivate his employees.
He said, “Corporate Social Responsibility is something that’s very, very important, not just that it serves the community but it also serves the team members in that you don’t just have stable jobs and are well paid, but you also get a sense of purpose and reason for being successful at what you’re doing.”
Mr. Andre Cummings continues to expand his horizon, learning as much as he can through business coaching and training opportunities with the aim of continued growth.