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Daily Inspiration: Meet Randy Horejsi

Today we’d like to introduce you to Randy Horejsi.

Hi Randy, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I have always been interested in graphics and design. When I was a kid, I used to build model cars, and I would hand paint them and cut decals out of vinyl scraps from my dad’s race cars. It wasn’t something I ever took seriously, though. After high school, I just went to work. I didn’t do well in school, so college wasn’t something I had a lot of interest in. After working in a body shop, then being a welder for a couple of years, I decided I didn’t want to do that for the rest of my life. I started going to a Technical College in 2007, where I and I thought I wanted to be an engineer. After being reminded that school was not my favorite thing, I dropped out of the Architecture and Drafting program and switched to a printing program. I graduated in 2008 with a Technical Diploma in Print Technology. From there, I just started trying to do small odds and ends for people—business card designs, racing cards for my friends, etc. In 2010 my wife and I received a First Time Home Buyers tax credit. I took a large chunk of that money and bought my first vinyl printer. With no prior experience, knowledge of operating a business, or any business background, I worked on building our business part-time while still working a regular full-time job. In 2016 I finally left my regular full-time job and worked for myself out of our home full time. In 2017 I bought our first commercial building, where we currently operate. In 2018 I hired my first employee. As of today, we have three full-time employees with hopes of adding another soon, and we have outgrown our space and have been exploring options to move to a new location.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey has been a smooth road?
In the grand scheme of things, I can probably say that things have progressed smoothly over the last 10 years from a business perspective. Other than working through learning curves in the vinyl graphics business and learning how to manage and operate a business with no prior knowledge or experience, it has gone pretty well. The only thing I would say I would have liked would be to have grown or progressed a little faster than we have.

The biggest struggle I have experienced is learning how to balance growing a business and having a family life. Taking the time and effort to grow a business from nothing takes time, dedication, and sacrifice. I have sacrificed personal wants as well as the wants of my family over the last 10+ years. There have been countless late nights, early mornings, weekends, and so on. When we could have been taking vacations, I worked. Working, in general, has always been something that I have enjoyed and gives me a feeling of fulfillment, but it has always been tough for me to maintain a healthy balance between work and home. The family’s stress from our workload can get difficult for everyone.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
At Fuel Graphics Co., we do vinyl vehicle wraps and graphics, signs, banners, decals, and design. Along with paint protection film and window tinting. Our primary focus is vinyl wraps and graphics, but due to being in a small market, we must have a diverse offering of services. We try to set ourselves apart by providing better service than anyone else and by working hard to be more creative than others. In this business, anyone can be taught the technical skills of the job for installs, etc. But not everyone provides service and can’t teach creativity, and we try to leverage those things to put ourselves ahead of others.

Do you have any memories from childhood that you can share with us?
Growing up in a racing family, most of my best memories are racing-related. I always loved the early spring when we would get the fresh lettering on the car. Going to the tracks at the beginning of the season, seeing all of the new cars, choosing your favorites, and collecting signatures and photos from the drivers was always a lot of fun.

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