According to Socrates, “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.”
Those that know me know I’ve always embraced change. While the act of change is uncomfortable, I believe it makes us better and stronger in the end. Which is why I’m proud to announce Valor Mechanical’s biggest change to date: making the move into our new facility in Stewartville, MN.
How It Started
I started Valor Mechanical back in September of 2012 after spending more than three decades in the mechanical industry. While originally based out of my hometown of Harmony, MN, we focused our services on the Rochester market and Valor’s main offices were established in downtown Rochester in April of 2013. A long-since vacant, 2,300 sq. ft. space that my family and I renovated ourselves to meet our needs. It didn’t look like much at first, but it was a space that was a blank canvas, ready to change with the needs of the business.
Our focus was on commercial construction mechanical work at first, and the company expanded quickly in the Rochester area. To fulfill the needs of our growing client-base, we introduced our residential service sector in 2014 and even purchased a lot with a small warehouse on the south side of Rochester to accommodate our field and service operations. Growth like this made change inevitable. With the versatile downtown office space able to accommodate more staff and the new warehouse lot able to house more materials and capabilities, we took the changes in stride.
How It’s Going
Fast forward a few years and Valor’s continued growth had both the office and the warehouse over-extended space-wise, so I knew that another change was needing to be made. While I’d been keeping an eye out for larger facilities for years, in late summer of 2020, our “change” presented itself to me in the form of a new building on the north end of Stewartville – a mere 11 miles south of our downtown office and 3 miles south of our warehouse. And, better yet, this building not only could accommodate future growth of the business, but consolidate both our warehouse and our office locations into one.
While having sat vacant for many years and in need of a facelift, the building offered more than 12,000 square feet of warehouse space (a far cry from the nine hundred square feet of space at our warehouse up the road) as well as almost 4,000 square feet of office space. Seemed to be the perfect solution to our on-going problems, and the fact that we closed on the purchase of the building the day of Valor’s 8th anniversary seemed to be a clear sign that this was just the change needed.
So we started on “building the new” (to us, anyway). It wasn’t just me and my family working on the renovations this time, but my dedicated work family as well. We cleared trees from the lot, painted the exterior of the building, cleaned up the warehouse, and had our field & service operations moved in by the end of October 2020. Since January, we’ve been focusing our efforts on the interior: renovating and building out the new offices, conference rooms, and break areas that our downtown location had never afforded us.
While our field team has been operating out of the warehouse side of the new facility since last fall (and enjoying all of the benefits and luxuries the larger space provides), we will be officially ending our lease at our downtown office (416 S Broadway in Rochester) on March 31st, 2021 and our office staff will be 100% operational in the Stewartville location as well as of April 1st – coincidentally the same date we moved into the downtown office eight years ago.
How the Future Looks
Rest assured that our presence in Rochester will not decrease. Moving a few miles south will help us to expand our services offerings and capabilities to better meet the growing HVAC and plumbing needs in the Rochester area – Stewartville included. As is our goal with most changes we make – we want more to “experience the Valor difference.”
Sure, the new location allows us more space, more collaboration between office and field staff, and (thankfully) more parking than downtown Rochester, but what I’m most excited for is how it’s going to allow for future growth, expansion, and change. We’ll be able to increase our sheet metal production, welding services, and prefabrication of all current mechanical services offered, as well as have room to introduce additional services as needed in the future. We’ll be able to add more team members to both field and office, and, as a business built on relationships, we’ll be able to host more events and entertain – as soon as it’s safe to do so, of course. Until we can resurrect our patio parties and chili feeds, we’ll keep “building our new” until we can share our new space with you.