Business: Morales Terrazzo
Location: South Jordan, Utah
Business challenge: Getting the support to confidently start and run the business side of a company.
Diana and Adrian Morales had dreamed of starting a business together since their children were small. Adrian worked with his hands, building a reputation for quality terrazzo flooring. Diana earned a business degree while parenting their kids. Together, the pair launched Morales Terrazzo in the throes of the pandemic.
Spouses Diana and Adrian have been together for 18 years, and they always had an end goal in mind: owning their own business.
"We just kind of slowly worked toward that goal," Diana says, although they deferred the dream while things with Adrian’s then-employers were going smoothly.
Despite developing skills to perform services and run a business for years, the timing for launching their business wasn't quite what the Morales family expected. Adrian left his employer in June 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic so the couple could embark on a business of their own. They built their business around the skills Adrian had already mastered: installing and restoring custom-designed decorative terrazzo for residential and commercial clients.
"That's how it all got started, and we just learned everything as we went. [Adrian] continued learning and doing the terrazzo, which he had already mastered, but me having to start a business from zero has been challenging but interesting," Diana says.
Even with her business degree, Diana needed guidance to feel confident getting the family's business up and running.
"That's where QuickBooks comes in, where it makes it easy for me, starting a business in the middle of a pandemic. Having the tools or the system of QuickBooks to help out has made it easy to manage and run a business," Diana says.
Diana didn't feel like there was any competition when it came to the financial management software she'd use to run the business.
"QuickBooks is the one with the higher reputation to where it's, 'Hey, that's the go-to,'" she says. "I found that QuickBooks Online was going to work better for us because of the accessibility."
As the husband-and-wife team visit potential customers, go on-site for jobs, and buy supplies, they know they can always access their business data.
"I can access QuickBooks or, basically, I can access my company from anywhere with internet access on an iPad, a cellphone, just basically anything, with having the Online [version]," Diana says.
QuickBooks Online makes it easy to generate financial reports, like the profit and loss statement, and coordinate with their certified public accountant.
"I click a button and I can provide my P&L to our CPA," Diana explains.
She skips the pain of manually entering transactions, categorizing them, and reconciling their accounts through a spreadsheet. She's also averting the stereotypical old-school shoebox of business receipts.
"I can sync the business bank account to QuickBooks, so we don't have to keep a bunch of paper receipts," Diana points out.
With QuickBooks Payments, Morales Terrazzo is able to give customers a modern way to pay for services, while saving the business time.
"I recently set up our payment link, which I love, because it gives our clients the convenience of being able to [pay] from their device," Diana says. "We're in the business of quality, so if we can focus our time on quality craftsmanship, then we can take our focus there, versus having to pick up a check."
Adrian and Diana bring together very different sets of experience to their business.
"He's done terrazzo since he was 16 years old, so that's what he knows and loves. I love the business side of it," she says. "Adrian and I have both been pioneers in setting the footprints for our family to just go ahead and do it."
Adrian spent two decades mastering his craft, starting when he dropped out of high school in tenth grade. Diana, on the other hand, earned her business degree with an emphasis in human resources while she was raising their boys.
"If you're driven, and you're talented, that can take you very far," Diana says. "I find it interesting that you have to have a degree to work for a big company, but you don't need a degree to have your own company."
The pair's complementary skill sets have served the business well so far.
"He would not be able to run the side that I do, but at the same time, I don't have a skill where I can go out and do something, and get paid for it," Diana says. "So we go hand in hand because … I wouldn't be able to run a company without him, and he wouldn't be able to do it without me."
As a couple thrown into a business launch unexpectedly, Diana says she recommends that others dreaming of entrepreneurship jump in feet first.
"Just do it. Don't be afraid to take the leap," she asserts. "I should take my own advice, though. I'm a perfectionist; if I don't feel it's going to be perfect, it takes me a while to take that initial step. But I would just say just do it, and you learn as you go."
Owning their own business has given the Morales family more time together. After the couple had a deathly serious bout of COVID, for Diana, nothing could be more valuable than time with the people she loves.
"The most rewarding part of being a business owner is your time freedom, and spending the time to create memories, versus having the money to buy stuff that just stays here when you leave," she says proudly.
QuickBooks customer paid for their time.
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