By Nicole Hennessy
In an introduction to entrepreneurship course at Miami University in Ohio, Ted Bradfield was introduced to opportunities available through an Oxford-based company called Textbook Painting, which offers students positions in areas from painting to marketing and leadership.
Interested in running his own small business throughout college, Bradfield applied for a leadership position and is now going into his second year managing a team based out of Lakewood.
Last year, he even won manager of the year, having done $52,000 in business over the summer.
And this year, with the help of seven full-time employees, up from just three, he hopes to increase that number to $200,000.
In addition to his existing full-timers, who handle marketing and go door to door spreading the word about the company, Bradfield is looking to hire three to five more temporary full-time employees geared toward marketing and as many as 12 crew members, whom he will interview within the next few weeks.
As each intern is required to take professional training courses with Sherwin Williams and Glidden Paint, no experience is necessary, but the ability to handle physical labor is required of those who sign up to be crew members.
For those students, tasks include exterior and interior house painting, concrete and deck refinishing, fence painting and staining and power washing.
Despite the work that goes into his leadership position, Bradfield, who is in charge of his own advertising, fundraising and planning, as if he owns the company, said, “We have a lot of fun.”
“Work hard, play hard,” he added, mentioning that the best interns are rewarded with a trip to Cancun, Mexico.
In an economy where a college degree doesn’t necessarily mean gainful employment, an internship can make a big difference, which is why many schools require them of graduates.
The company, founded in 2006, is described as a “student development company.” With its headquarters considered to be the Lakewood office, in the six years since Textbook’s launch, it now operates in five states.
Bradfield, who’s pursuing a degree in entrepreneurship and business law, hopes to use his management experience to open his own business one day, which, he says, will be located in Northeast Ohio.
“I love the Cleveland area,” he said, marketing interns taking calls and typing e-mails behind him in a bright orange Screw Factory office. “I’m looking to stick around.”
As he’s still a junior, he has about a year to go before this becomes a reality; but in the meantime, he’ll continue to build his resume.
Already promoting for what he hopes to be a busy summer, he’s participated in the home and garden show and an annual old-home celebration in Lakewood.
More information on Textbook Painting can be found at the company’s website. Bradfield encourages those interested in a summer position to contact him at 440-941-4332.