River City Six: Sharon Martin
Sharon Martin is the District Manager of Paychex (www.paychex.com), the leading small business payroll provider in the area for over 40 years.
Tell us a little about your business.
We help local business owners stay focused on growing their businesses by helping them streamline administrative processes, including payroll, timekeeping, tax filings, benefits management and HR support.
How did you get started in the business?
I owned three businesses and was drowning in paperwork when I found Paychex and became a client. After a few years as a client, I sold my last business and was looking for my next professional passion. So, since I had always promoted Paychex to fellow business owners and praised how much help I had received, I decided to join Team Paychex…and just started my 7th year with the company.
What has been your most important achievement professionally?
Buying, growing and selling three businesses while achieving all my goals during that time. We had lofty goals; we wanted to double revenues annually and eventually sell the businesses for significant profits. Keeping three different businesses running and on target to achieve those objectives was extremely rewarding.
Tell us a little about your family.
My husband and I are celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary next summer. We have six amazing kids that we are super proud of and feel very blessed to be a part of such close knit community.
What do you see as one of the biggest turning points in your life?
For me, it was buying my first business. This was the first time I really felt free. There were no rules, no limits, no boundaries other than my own ambition and imagination. This was a very liberating and frightening experience. Having walked this path has allowed me to become an excellent partner to other local business owners forging their own paths.
What is your favorite thing to do on a day off?
Go on a walk or bike ride, tend the garden and travel.
What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know?
Before my middle school growth spurt, I was a gymnast. I got booted off the team for being too tall!
What are you the most proud of?
My children. They are all warm, caring and good-hearted people whom I am proud to put into the world.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
My grandfather gave me a few pieces of really good advice that have stuck with me over the years, especially: “Take care of yourself, no one else can.”
If you could choose only one descriptive word to be remembered as, what would it be?
Which talent would you most like to have?
I wish I could sing. I love music, but cannot participate in public…it’s just awful!
What local non-profit organization(s) are you passionate about or involved with, and are there any special reasons why?
I have been involved with the Salvation Army over the years. I believe strongly in their concept of a hand up, not a hand out. I appreciate the life and job skills training that the Salvation Army provides in addition to all their emergency services.
What is your favorite local restaurant?
Brother Sebastian’s Steak House & Winery.
If you could have dinner with one famous person from the past or present, who would it be?