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  • ADDRESS George's Flowers
    1953 Franklin Road
    Roanoke, VA, 24014
  • CALL US (540) 981-0900

George's Flowers, an iconic Roanoke florist wins with service above all

A text version...
This month's Sponsor Spotlight features an iconic Roanoke business, George’s Flowers, and its owner George Clements, George started his business in 1981 making this his 38th year in business, He has faced all the challenges of any small
business, growing pains, the economy, staffing, customer retention,
but he also is in an industry that has seen a significant decline over
the past two decades. ‘Through it all, George has not only survived,
but has grown his business and his roots” to allow future success,

It was fascinating to hear his story, particularly since there is no
downtime in bis shop, and in the midst of tiring photos and details,
there was wark going op all around us as usual,

“When I decided to open a flower shop } wanted the flowers,
plant and floral designs vo not be the traditional US Florist of
the 1960s,” said George, “I would not be doing round mounds
of daisies and carnations with baby's breath. I wanted to model
my shop end designs with « European influence which would include both the design and the Mowers in my cooler, We would use Iris, Lilies, Hydrangea,
Curly Willow - all with designs that wore loose
and airy, natural, just like they grow.”

Starting with a vision is key to any small business owner, but the reality of running a business provided a key learning point very easily, George explained, “Quickly | would learn a valuable insight - I did sell flowers but the most important thing I sold was our customer service. It doesn't matter how fabulous your designs or flowers are if you cannot offer top-notch customer service.” While every business talks about customer service and wants to be good, George focused on what he felt woald
help his business be great at it, “I knew technology
would be the answer in providing great service.” said George, “Accurate information with customer history and preferences would be vital in assisting our salespeople and designers with providing the very best in floral designs end personal service to our customers,”

Another key to longevity and success that became apparent was the need
to stay current on what was happening in the floral industry, and what was forecast. George has consistently attended national trade shows and
Industry events to keep his Roanoke business on the leading edge, and along with that knowledge, must come a willingness to implement changes.
*1 believe in evolving because the alternative js becoming a dinosaur and
becoming extinct,” explained George. He and his longtime employees have witnessed major changes in their industry, and one very recently when FTD filed for bankruptcy. FTD had at one time one of the top 10 corporate names and brands in the world, but pressure from direct shippers who sent loose flowers in a box and now Amazon, have dramatically impacted the industry from the very top (PTD) to the very bottom in small-town Ameri-
on. "My biggest concern is the rapid decline of the US Florist,” said George,
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