Meet Nick Starkey, co-owner, designer, and installer for ShelfGenie (www.shelfgenie. com/omaha).
Tell us a little about your business. – At ShelfGenie, we provide a lot more than just better shelves—we’re delivering a product that makes life easier for people. It might feel like a small improvement to a kitchen, pantry, bathroom, or other areas of the home, but the difference it makes is pretty significant. People who have implemented ShelfGenie’s solutions are sometimes doubling the storage space they thought they were limited to. Our pullout shelves retrofit existing or new cabinets. We also design custom closets and storage solutions that can be done in any area of the home. ShelfGenie allows you better access to your cabinets and closets.
How did you get started in the business? – I worked as an installer at ShelfGenie for for three years before purchasing the business in 2013. I now train and certify all our installers in the U.S. and Canada.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced professionally? – I’ve had different businesses before ShelfGenie. Being a business owner always comes with its challenges. ShelfGenie is definitely the best company I’ve ever been a part of—we have the best products on the market and our people are the nicest and most professional in the industry.
Tell us a little about your family. – I’m originally from Schuyler, NE. I have a daughter who just started her first year of college.
What is your favorite thing to do on a day off? – Mowing, gardening, fishing, hunting, or I like to go back to what was my grandfolks’ farm in Schuyler to help with planting, bailing hay, and operating the combine.
Who inspires you? – My office kind of looks like a bad Applebee’s with how many photos I have on the wall of influential people from history— past presidents and other historical figures who made a difference.
What is your favorite quote or the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? – About 25 years ago when I was a young, naïve, and arrogant kid, I had a boss who told me, “This ship isn’t going to sink if you’re not on it.” Basically saying, I’m replaceable, and he was right. It humbled me and reminded me the importance of knowing my place for the benefit of everyone else on board. It’s something that has stuck with me through today.
If you could have a super power, what would it be? – This might be a bit of a loophole, but I would choose time travel so that I could go to the future at a time where fly suits are invented. Then I could fly anywhere I go in time.
What is your greatest talent that you don’t utilize in your daily work life? – I’m really good with animals.
What is your favorite book or the last good book you read? – I’ve been reading a book series on the history of Omaha, which has been really interesting.
What is your favorite movie? – I like all the Indiana Jones movies
What is your favorite TV show? – I watch a lot of MeTV because I enjoy the classics, such as M*A*S*H, Hogan’s Heroes, and Green Acres.
What is your favorite local restaurant? – Lina’s Mexican Restaurant has amazing super nachos. I probably put one of their children through college with how much I’ve eaten there.
If our readers would like to contact you, how should they do so? – (402) 659-4676; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.shelfgenie. com/omaha.