From Dead-End Job to Owning a Business: How This Millennial Rewrote His Future

At 23 years old, Adam Powell wasn’t where he wanted to be. He was stuck in a dead-end job and wanted a change, but he felt like he was going nowhere — fast.

Then, an unexpected opportunity set him on the path to realize a lifelong dream: entrepreneurship. He didn’t know if he could do it but he took a chance on himself and purchased a moving franchise. Here’s how Adam took control of his future as a franchise owner with You Move Me.

O2E: What were you doing before you joined You Move Me?

AP: Honestly, not a lot. I left college and was working in a factory, but I hated the job. I moved to Madison and was looking to get hired quickly, so I took a temp job as a mover with a local company called You Move Me. A week later, they offered me a full-time job.

O2E: Tell me how you went from mover to business owner.

AP: I was a mover for less than a year before I was promoted. We were growing quickly, so I stepped in to do onsite estimates. That was three years ago.

At the time, the business wasn’t running with a hands-on owner. They had a general manager who left so they asked me to take over. At first, I thought, “There’s no way I can buy a business.” I didn’t have savings or a degree, but I wanted it and had the drive to make it happen.

I decided to ask my parents, unsure if they would help. They’re highly principled people and believe you have to work hard for yourself. But they believed in me and my passion; they could see that this was the perfect opportunity for me. They ended up putting their vehicles on loan as collateral to help me buy the business. My mom even works for me now!

O2E: What has been the best part so far? The hardest part?

AP: I’m a very competitive person so I love the grind. I’ve also been surprised by how easy it is to stay motivated. I love the work, it’s fun, and I’m excited to get up in the morning.

My biggest challenge has been balancing work with my personal life. We’re still in start-up, so it’s a lot of work to get off the ground. I’ve had to prioritize my business over my personal life but I know it’s a marathon, not a race. I’ve only owned the franchise for five months. Eventually, it’ll all balance back out.

O2E: What advice would you give someone looking into a franchise opportunity?

AP: If you’re going to own a business, you need to be hands-on and lead from within. You need to get your hands dirty to understand how the process works. Since I started as a mover, I can see the perspective of everyone on my team. Being on the frontlines and working with customers can be stressful; it’s a tough thing to understand unless you’ve actually been there and done it.

O2E: How has your life changed?

AP: I finally feel like I have a purpose. Other jobs are just about making money to survive. Now, I feel as though I’m making a difference.

I remember the first move I ever did and the relief I saw on our customer’s face. Moving is such a stressful time, but we showed up with smiles on our faces ready to help. We truly care and seeing our customers’ reactions is so rewarding.

My parents raised me on the belief that if you do the right thing, good things will happen. That is completely aligned with what we do at You Move Me. We take care of our customers, treat them right, and everyone walks away happy.