Las Vegas, NVINDUSTRY: PROFESSIONAL SERVICES
BUSINESS: SEE US NOW STAFFING
YEAR FOUNDED: 2014
PROGRAM: 2016 EMERGING LEADERS LAS VEGAS
“I’ve been mentored by so many great community leaders and so many people invested in me and our clients invested in me. So how can I give back what was given to me? How can I help someone get out of poverty by showing them how to fish, not giving them free fish?”BUSINESS OVERVIEW
Laura Nowlan foundedSee Us Now Staffing in 2014. She had over a decade of experience in staffing, but she realized that she wanted to have more ownership, and at the end of the day, something to show for it. Laura applied what she valued from her experience to her new company, and discarded what she didn’t like. One of the things she hated, she says, “was that you had to number crunch, you had to process people like they were numbers.” She decided to take a more human approach – and considers that the biggest differentiator: “What’s different about us – we treat people like people.”
Laura’s business drive comes from a desire to give back to the community. She explained, “I’m not here to serve the rich. I came out of poverty. I grew up in the projects. I’ve been on my own since I was fifteen years old.” Laura aids her community through her staffing work, making sure money stays in the community, as well as through her volunteer work.
She decided to co-found the nonprofit Nevada Hispanic Business Group in January 2015, and serves as the unpaid executive director. However, See Us Now Staffing and the nonprofit are closely aligned. Laura’s staff members donate their time, including their paid work time, to volunteer. Laura partnered with Hope for Prisoners to help ex-offenders get back to the workplace by connecting returning citizens to clients who are second-chance employers.
To scale the impact her business is making, Laura participated in the Small Business Administration’s Emerging Leaders initiative in 2016. She started See Us Now Staffing with a personal loan of just $2,000, and initially thought that the company would remain small, but Emerging Leaders helped her to think bigger and to make tough business decisions. She found that her growth plan has to change with her company as it grows: “a business plan continues growing, it continues changing, evolving. I have applied a lot of the things that I’ve learned in the class but it’s a breathing document so it’s constantly changing.” Laura has learned the business knowledge to allow her company to focus on what’s important: “I’m a people-oriented person. I love people.”
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