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image L-R: Caleb Maxwell with brother Matthew Maxwell, owner of Maxwell Window Company.

DALLAS/FT WORTH - When it comes to a working philosophy for his business, Matthew Maxwell uses the LeaDeRSHIP acronym he learned in the Army: Loyalty - Duty - Respect - Selfless Service - Honor - Integrity - Personal Courage.





    As owner of Maxwell Window Company, Maxwell uses the disciplines and training from his nine years in the Army to give his customers what they need, not what he can sell.
    In fact, when Maxwell got out of the Army in 2010 and worked for another window company in the sales department, he laughs when he admits, “I was not a good salesman. I didn’t have that pushy mentality to get people to sign on the dotted line.”
    Fortunately, his sales days only lasted for nine months, then he moved over to installations. This is where Maxwell really learned the window business and how new windows could benefit the customer.
    This suited Maxwell much better. He didn’t like being grouped together in the same category as shady window contractors who do the hard sell with sometimes less then honorable sales tactics. “That rubs people the wrong way,” he said.
    This other company laid Maxwell off during a lean period. When he started Maxwell Window Company, he “had just $500 bucks to my name at the time.”
    Maxwell got busy networking with other businesses and joined his local Chamber of Commerce. He credits his father’s neighbor with getting his first job on his own.
    It took about six months to get Maxwell Window Company rolling. Through the years Maxwell has had several other employees, but he didn’t have the best of experiences with them. He admits that his line of work doesn’t attract the college graduate type; thus Maxwell only has his brother as his other full-time employee.
    He says that he has to be able to trust his employees when he’s not there and when they are in people’s homes. His brother does nothing but installations, while Maxwell does the interaction with the customer.
    Maxwell’s Army background has served him well in the window industry because of all the rules and regulations that come with it. Not only are there the overall federal government guidelines, but there are also the individual city rules. And those rules can vary from city to city, something Maxwell has picked up from applying for permits in different locations.
    He said that in 2004, the government established the UV-reflecting level guidelines for glass, then made them even more strict in 2009.
    Instead of being a “salesman” per se, Maxwell will work with the client to explain the benefits of new windows or glass. He explains it to them so it makes sense, and then lets them decide on the course of action. They don’t have to replace their windows, but if they do, Maxwell knows the regulations to be in compliance with them.
    New windows and frames offer an immediate benefit with heating and cooling savings, even increasing the life span of the AC unit itself.
    “Replacement windows are what we really pride ourselves in and make our living,” Maxwell said.
    While finding the right help has been difficult, Maxwell said that “I do want to grow and have more employees.” With only his brother, however, he is comfortable where he is at so he’s not rushed to grow bigger.
    And, he wants to maintain his LeaDeRSHIP worldview. Maxwell said I’ve always taken everything I’ve done very seriously,” and doesn’t want his name and business to be known for shoddy work done by undisciplined contractors. “It’s all over the place,” he said.
    The former intelligence analyst served his country; now, he serves his community with the same virtues he learned while a soldier.
    Maxwell Window Company runs its operations from Burleson. -dsz

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Dan Zulli dan@constructionnews.net