In November 2010, Gillette officially opened her Caring Transitions business of Southern Arizona.
BY: MEGAN FERRINGER
Editor – Caring Transitions Contributor
Sherri Gillette came to Caring Transitions in a roundabout way.
For decades she worked in corporate marketing and sales, doing work on the behalf of others. But then, seemingly overnight, she grew tired of it all. At the same time, as she was on the hunt for a new career, she decided to move from Iowa to Arizona. And in the midst of that transition, her mother decided to make the move to Tucson with them. The coordination of the big move, Gillette said, was challenging. And as a marketing person, it spurred an idea in her head—maybe other people experienced those same challenges during their lifetime, too.
Gillette started researching ways to take advantage of that opportunity. She knew a few things were certain—she enjoyed helping others, and she wanted to work with the senior population. That’s when she found Caring Transitions.
“Caring Transitions was a beautiful marriage of things I love. I believed there was a lot of opportunity in the industry, too. There are families everywhere who are in need of a helping hand,” Gillette said. “So after attending a Discovery Day, looking at competitors and researching movers in town, I realized this was the total solution.”
In particular, Gillette was intrigued by the multiple profit centers that Caring Transitions offered—from relocation and downsizing to estate sales and full service moves, the brand offered everything needed to make major life transitions as seamless as possible.
In November 2010, Gillette officially opened her Caring Transitions business of Southern Arizona. And so far, it’s an investment that’s paid off in a big way. In fact, in 2015, she was recognized by the national Caring Transitions corporate team with their Pioneer Spirit Award.
“Sherri has developed a strategy that has helped many offices to assist clients, solving the question of what do we do when the client has too few items to hold an estate sale, by pioneering the multi-client estate sale for Caring Transitions. Sherri’s team is passionately involved in new franchisee training, truly helping to shape the future of Caring Transitions through intensive in field training of the Caring Transition concepts for new offices,” said Caring Transitions Corporate President Chris Seman.
Gillette said supporting other franchise offices and offering her business as an On-Site Training Center is something that came naturally to her and her team.
“We believe in the value of fully supporting our clients with every part of the powerful Caring Transitions model. So, we appreciate being able to share our commitment to the southern Arizona market with others from across the country–because we want to inspire them to make the same commitment to their clients in their markets. When everyone across the country begins using all of the available opportunities to serve our senior clients, we all win,” Gillette said.
Today, Gillette runs the business with her husband Matt, General Manager Ann Williams, Online Sales Manager Jeff Smith, Estate Sales Manager Cheree Miller, Finance Manager Ben Allen and a team of more than 18 full-time and part-time employees.
“We have also been wives, mothers, husbands, fathers, daughters, sons, granddaughters and grandsons and have helped our own beloved parents and grandparents navigate through many of life’s changes, so we can assure our clients that we will act as their compassionate onsite advocate, keeping their best interests at heart,” Gillette said.
In addition to the actual work the company does every day, Gillette said owning this type of business has impacted her on a personal level.
“I have gained great humility and even greater respect for the senior community. I am smarter, kinder, gentler, and better because of their impact on me personally. I am also pleased to be a solid employer in this market. I believe we have the best team members and I am very proud of how they care for our clients, their treasures, and their dignity. We love what we do and who we serve,” she said.