JAMES ALISCH: WOW 1 Day Painting
Rookie Year: 1995
Turf: Winnipeg, MB
Current Home: Vancouver, BC
Education: The University of Winnipeg
Current Role: Managing Director at WOW 1 Day Painting
His take on Entrepreneurship…
“The reason I have good perspective on entrepreneurship isn’t because I’m some smart, special guy, it’s because I came from almost two decades at The Franchise Company [former parent company to College Pro], to a different franchise role in leading and developing an organization, to then doing it on my own, to then coming back to direct another brand again. I’ve seen the full cycle”.
For the right person, at the right time, entrepreneurship can be a vehicle that opens doors and forces development – according to James at least (which we happen to agree with).
James started with College Pro in his hometown, as he was going to school and getting his business degree.
He was intrigued at the opportunity to get out of something what he put into it – which remains his number one take away from College Pro. “I remember telling my girlfriend at the time, who’s now my wife, that I was given a painting franchise and she said, ‘you have no idea how to paint’, and all I could say was, ‘it’s okay…I can figure it out’”. Obviously, he did. He went on to be the General Manager in Manitoba and Saskatchewan for 3 years before moving to British Columbia as the vice president for Western Canada. He is most proud of the productivity growth that took place during his time as VP.
Today, his network remains deeply entrenched with College Pro ties between his friends, his employees and even his financial advisor.
What skills did he learn?
When we asked James what skills he picked up during his time at College Pro, his immediate response was a laugh,
“At some point in my life I can envision myself writing a book and calling it ‘Everything I Learned About Business I Learned At College Pro.’”
James was with CP for a decade and a half, during the beginning of his professional career, and the development of his skills such as coaching, recruiting, selling, finance and evolving brands – which have all been critical to his career.
James post College Pro: Franchising and Entrepreneurship
Following College Pro, he went on to do some consulting in the Vancouver area before moving on to 1-800-GOT-JUNK as the VP of Operations, Sales and the Director of Franchise Development. His family then moved, and he bought MIRA floors and interiors with two people he knew from College Pro. The company grew quickly and did extremely well under James’ leadership. He became a partner at You Move Me, a moving company in Vancouver, a few years later, which became a top performing franchise. In 2014 the opportunity arose for him to step into the role of managing director at O2E brands, which runs 1-800, You Move Me, and WOW 1 DAY PAINTING. He then realized the WOW 1 Day needed work on building and developing a brand name, so he’s been leading that development ever since!
James is passionate about the outdoors, specifically spending time on the lake (not the ocean) on a boat, water skiing, tubing or fishing with his friends and family (his favourite? Cultus Lake! #explorebc)
James loves to travel, and when asked about his favourite place, he responded, “wherever there’s not any rain”
The most important thing in James’ life is his family. His wife, Shauna, his twins, Maia & Bryn and his son, Grady.
He loves his College Pro roots, “My expectation from now until…forever…is that as I walk through life my most important relationships and most trusted people originate from my College Pro experience”