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Meet Adam Molbeck of Mountainside Furnishings in Scottsdale

Today we’d like to introduce you to Adam Molbeck.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
So, here we go. I am originally from Wisconsin. After high school, I didn’t go to college (just wasn’t my thing) nor was it my plan. Here I am, working 3rd Sift in some factory (no college degree, you can rest assured you are factory bound in Wisconsin), at 17 1/2, thinking to myself, this is life? I need a change. Fast forward, I turn 18 mid-August, leave for the Naval Reserves, as a hospital corpsman (medic) at the beginning of October.

Fast forward again, I am back working in the factories again, moving my way up at CNH (Case New Holland), starting as an order picker, then moving to forklift, then forklift leadman, then CNH purchases a smaller company in Central Illinois, where I get offered to move and get my CNC certification. So, at this point, I have moved up within their system, however, as a Union member, I am still low man on the totem pole due to longevity. I mean there’s guys (and gals) that have been there 15, 20 + years and here I am with almost five. I’ve got a long way to go.

Move forward again, after many mandatory layoffs from CNH, I need something more reliable, as now I am married and have my 1st son on the way. My wife, tells me about a Union position within her company (she was a commercial furniture designer) as a (Teamsters) commercial furniture installer with her Herman Miller company. Of course, I jump on it right away. This is where my passion for furniture developed, (who would have thought furniture is where I’d find my happiness?!). Still, I knew I wanted more and to be my best self and grow. I made it my mission then to try to move into a sales role (which most companies in the midwest would require college degrees just to have an entry sales position). Luckily, after a few years in Illinois, we we’re ready enough to make the move to Arizona for another opportunity in our field of focus.

Long story short, we move our family to Arizona to start again there within the commercial furniture industry. This is where I finally land my first sales role with my built up knowledge and my wife becomes a senior designer (then eventually account manager). In this time, I hold several sales positions, from entry level dealers to contract dealers in the Valley. However, with my mind built to be the best person and strive for most, I start brainstorming and idea throwing to start my own business to support the dealers that supported me.

This is where I formed Mountainside Furnishings in October 2018. A manufacturer rep group that our dealer and design network can rely on to provide the most innovative and reliable products available. Of course, as starting any business, it was hard. I had to create my own brand, find manufacturer’s that would actually want to speak with me, as we had no experience in the representation field or even business experience. However, I would learn, what I thought to be our biggest weakness was our strongest feature. Manufacturers were looking for fresh, young, and hungry faces to build their brands within our market. And that fits the bill. Within the first three months of starting our a business, we had our complete line package formed with some of the most well known commercial furniture manufacturers. Starting 2019 with an official launch. I am sure a lot of spectators following along my story, figured I’d fail and jump back into the dealer system, but now with my experience and backing of major manufacturers, I am a force to be dealt with. While we are still the new kids on the block, we have had tremendous success. We are hiring our first-person additional person, and hopefully, in Q3-Q4 opening our manufacturer showroom in Old Town Scottsdale. I know we are the new kids on the block, and we have a lot to learn and adapt as the business grows. Rest assured, I am committed to offering the best experience for our dealer/design network has ever been offered moving forward. I am lucky enough to be in this position because of my dealer/design network, that said, I am here for them and any of there needs.

Future growth, I hope to have hired dedicated sales people for each of the states we cover (AZ, NM, NV) with dedicated A&D representatives in those markets. That’s long term goals, but it will happen eventually. It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Nothing is ever smooth! haha I mean well starting off, it was a challenge. To make myself relevant I needed to pickup manufacturers, that people actually have heard of in our market. Yes, I could go out, pick up 7 random commercial furniture manufacturers (there is many) and start my business. However, I knew I needed some actual big names behind my brand to help steamroll the process. It took a bit, roughly three months for me to be happy with my lineup to offer my dealer/design network. Took many cold calls, and manufacturers saying “No”, who are you? and a million emails back and forth. lol It’s crazy, now that I am up and running, Now, I am actually turning manufacturers down, never thought I would say that.
Now, the largest challenge, but one we seem to be overcoming gratefully is building our own brand, along with building our manufacturers brands at the same time. Our manufacturers come first in this setup, however, we have to educate the design/dealer partners of our brand as well (Mountainside Furnishings) so they remember us on anything they may be working on. While challenging, we find the challenge worthy and fun.

Please tell us about Mountainside Furnishings.
In short, we represent some of the most well known commercial manufacturers in our industry, We push our manufacturer partners within our design/dealer network to increase brand awareness and sales within our market.

I think what sets us apart the most, is our age and responsiveness. Most reps or manufacturer rep groups in our market have been around fooorreeeveerrrrrrr. Which is great, and they are truly most knowledge professionals around, which I probably have taken notes from every single one them. However, our industry is starting to usher in a new generation and we are at the forefront of that. I think it puts us in a good spot. We are not stuck in our ways, we are craving new and fresh knowledge! One other thing that sets us apart is our responsiveness. We live in the digital age, if you are not responding to emails, text, or calls within a few hours, somethings wrong. We all have our emails search on our phones, even if I am at lunch, I see an email come in, if I can answer it right there right then I will (takes two seconds), otherwise, I will still respond and let the person know I am working on it and will get back with them shortly.

As a rep group, we try to provide our dealers/design firms quick knowledgeable replies, asap, as they probably have a client asking them these questions they are requesting from us.

What’s your outlook for the industry in our city?
I think the Phoenix metro area itself, is an amazing market! It is growing and growing and growing. Right now, this puts any business owner or anyone thinking of starting out, in a very good position. Everybody wants to come out and move here, our growth is the main reason.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Images from The Senator Group, Iron Age Office, or Mountainside Furnishings

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