Dan Tafoya - Senior Vice President of Tailored Living

Date: JAN 16th, 2013

Topic: Interview with a CEO

As Senior Vice President of Tailored Living, Dan Tafoya is responsible for overseeing the strategic direction of Tailored Living. This includes managing the company vision, brand, support and day to day operations. Dan reports directly to Chad Hallock, President and CEO of Tailored Living and Home Franchise Concepts.

Tafoya started his career with Budget Blinds in November 2002 as Vice president of Company-Owned Operations. Dan worked close with the Budget Blinds founders, Chad Hallock, Todd Jackson, Tony Forbes, Brent Hallock and Dave Lewis to improve the Budget Blinds business model and start planning for a new concept. In July of 2006 Dan was promoted to Senior Vice President of Tailored Living. Dan has a BA from California State University, Fullerton. Dan has over 25 years in sales and management experience.

BeTheBoss.ca: Tell us about the Tailored Living concept.

Dan Tafoya: Tailored Living is the sister concept to Budget Blinds. Budget Blinds was formed in 1992 and has over 800 locations. It has grown to become the #1 window coverings franchise in North America. Many of the successful business systems and experiences from Budget Blinds are also in place with Tailored Living.

Founded in 2006, Closet Tailors was created to help homeowners better organize their closets, home offices and pantries. After experiencing rapid growth, Closet Tailors formed a strategic alliance with PremierGarage in 2010 and changed its name to Tailored Living to better reflect its all-encompassing organizational products. In 2011, Tailored Living acquired the PremierGarage brand and has since given home owners innovative products and solutions for organizing and beautifying every room in their home, including garage cabinets and liquid flooring.

BTB: How and when did you become involved with Tailored Living?

DT: I joined Budget Blinds in 2002. I have known Chad Hallock, the CEO of Budget Blinds, for many years and he is a visionary. I found the company’s business model and vision very intriguing. After working with Budget Blinds for five years it made sense to not limit this franchise model to just one concept.

BTB:: What was your background prior to joining Tailored Living?

DT: Prior to joining Tailored Living, I worked in sales management with two national companies focused in technology and sales. I have spent over 25 years at the executive management level building sales processes, support, and technology for corporate and franchise operations and sales.

BTB: What are some of the advantages in being a Tailored Living franchisee?

DT: Design Software: Our D’VinciTM design software allows franchisees to complete 3-D projects in minutes, right in front of the customer. Whether they’re designing a custom closet, garage or any home organization project, D’VinciTM helps to create stunning visuals along with an accurate parts list and proposal.

Technology: With state of the art technology and tech support in place, Tailored Living franchisees can focus on running a business.

  • TailoredLiving.com
  • PremierGarage.com
  • Local Franchise Websites
  • MyTailoredLiving.com- franchise portal
  • TT-CRM- customer relationship software
  • Monthly e-newsletters

Marketing Expertise: Tailored Living business coaches assist the franchisees with local area marketing planning sessions that include; organic, paid, database and internet marketing. The Tailored Living art server is an online marketing portal that houses a wide array of tools for all of your local marketing needs and is designed to be a one-stop shop for all your marketing collateral. Tailored Living franchisees also have two websites for Pay-Per-Click marketing campaigns, TailoredLiving.com and PremierGarage.com. Our IT department and internet partners work around the clock on website optimization.

On-Going Training / Support: Support from the Tailored Living corporate office starts immediately after the 11 day training program. Proactive coaching provides a smooth transition to the field. The Tailored Living business coaches follow a proven methodology for success. Additionally we offer:

  • Monthly Continued Education Webinars
  • Monthly Design Training Webinars
  • Regional Workshops
  • Annual Convention

No Manufacturing Requirements: Tailored Living implements an outsourced manufacturing model to reduce operational costs to the franchisee. With this model in place a franchisee can focus on sales and marketing and not worry about running a manufacturing plant. The Tailored Living vendor alliance program utilizes the buying power of a national franchise network allowing corporate to negotiate favorable product price points.

Key Accounts: Key Accounts are partnerships between Tailored Living and other synergistic brands for the purpose of driving new leads to our franchisees.

BTB: Who is your ideal franchisee?

DT: Tailored Living is looking for franchisees that are team players, have past experience in business, good communication skills, and integrity. No experience is required in the home organizational industry to become a Tailored Living franchisee. Our proprietary design software combined with our training and support give all of our new franchisees the confidence needed to start generating leads and selling immediately after completing training. Our franchisee past careers are comprised of teachers, software engineers, corporate managers and retail store managers just to name a few.

BTB: Tell us a little about the Home Organization Market?

DT: The multi-billion dollar home organization industry is experiencing a stage of evolution and growth. The industry’s roots began in closet design, but today home organization product lines have expanded to home offices, Murphy beds, entertainment centers, garage cabinets and more. Sales of home organization products in the garage are expected to post the fastest gains.

BTB: What are some of the greatest lessons you’ve learned in growing this franchise?

DT: What works well for our sister concept may not always work well for Tailored Living. It’s making the difficult decisions to change the business model when necessary to grow the company revenues.

BTB: Do you have a mentor and is there someone you use for inspiration?

DT: I have always admired two visionaries who changed the rules of the game, Walt Disney and Henry Ford. There is a lot of truth still today in their quotes.

“If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself”- Henry Ford

“If you can dream it, you can do it” – Walt Disney

BTB: What advice do you have for someone looking to acquire a Franchise?

DT: Do your homework. Make sure you are passionate about the brand, industry and products. Work hard and follow the franchise system. Trust the company’s vision!

BTB: In your opinion, why do you think that Tailored Living would be a great opportunity for someone?

DT: As mentioned before, the Home Organization industry is experiencing a stage of evolution and growth. Tailored Living is positioned to increase market share in North America by utilizing two websites, easy to use design software, robust product offerings and key account partnerships. The company also continues to invest in technology to improve lead generation and support for the Tailored Living franchisees.