John Maroney is a serial entrepreneur and a part of Canada’s oil & gas industry. He is also a welder by trade, originally from the Land Down Under (a.k.a. Australia), and immigrated to Canada in 2005. As the proud daughter of a Dad who was also a tradesmen (construction worker) and a Mom who came to Canada 48 years ago from Wales, I knew I had to feature John as soon as his email came across my desk.
As a result of his hard work, he was a finalist for the 2017 EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award- Prairies (Oil & Gas Services). Everyone, raise your (hard) hats and let’s get to know John a little better!
Question 1: Describe yourself in 3 words only.
- Resilient, determined, and fun.
Question 2: Tell me more about your business(es)? What kind are they?
SCI / SCI North: An Oilfield maintenance, construction and transportation company that primarily operates out of the Fort McMurray region.
Maroney Motors: A used truck and car dealership that also buys and sells used Oilfield equipment.
Maroney Group Inc: An exporting/importing company that specializes in exporting used Trucks, new truck parts, truck accessories and reconditioned truck parts.
Maroney Group Developments: Property development company that is currently buying and flipping houses in the Calgary area.
Question 3: Where does your entrepreneurial drive come from? What are your sources of inspiration?
- My drive comes from my childhood. When I was a young fella growing up in outback NSW Australia, I always dreamt of living a large life when I was to get older, and used to actually visualize the life I live now, back then.
- I wasn’t a smart kid at school and had a few teachers tell me I wasn’t going to do much with my life. I dropped out after grade 10 at 15 years old, ended up in Canada at 22 years old with a backpack and about $1300 and the rest is history :).
Question 4: Considering how fierce competition is among your industry, what are your business(es) competitive advantages? What makes you stand out in the crowd?
- My advantages are that I’m young, and I am from the trades, so I have a lot of street smarts.
- I know what employees want so I was able to build companies with the best of the best men and women working for me.
- Most importantly, I have something to prove.
Question 5: No two days are often the same for an entrepreneur, but what does a typical day look like for you?
- My typical day consists of waking up around 5am. Going to gym for about 2 hours, eating a small light breakfast then walking into my office and starting the day. I usually always have a lunch meeting with someone either from one of my companies, one of my bankers, my lawyer or just another business savvy person or friend.
- My afternoon will usually involve sitting down with my main bookkeeper and going over typical book work, outstanding invoices or just follow ups on bank/visa statements.
- My work day never ends, but I do put my phone down around 7-8 and after dinner I put my feet up and make sure I relax right before going to bed around 11pm.
Question 6: What do you daily to grow as a person?
- I try to learn from everything I can during a day. A new person I may have met that day. A quote I read, a book I picked up and scrolled through.
- I just try to surround my self with positive happy people on a daily basis and hope to absorb a part of them.
Question 7: What tricks have you discovered to keep you focused, productive and achieve a decent work/life balance?
- Resilience, Resilience, Resilience. If you can master been resilient then you can get through any thing and that’s the best trick ever.
- You have to have an “off” button. You need to push that button daily. Find a time when it suits you through out the day and then push it. With out that button/switch you will not have a healthy work/life balance.
Question 8: What popular entrepreneurial advice do you agree/disagree with?
- Robert Herjavec said it best – “A company is only as good as the people who work for it”. I absolutely love this quote. And I have lived by it.
- I also fully agree with the standard simple piece of advice that comes from many successful people and I truly believe in it- Never give up !
Question 9: What’s your favourite metaphor to describe entrepreneurship?
- “Get the right people on the bus!”
Question 10: What was the toughest moment you have experienced in your business practice? How did you succeed to get over it and move forward?
- In 2017 I was awarded a contract with a billion dollar company called AECOM. Through out the year I noticed one thing differently from the previous contracts I had prior to 2017. This was a much bigger organization and my company was simply a number.
- The head offices in Calgary is where my contract managers were located and they had made it quite clear that my days were numbered as they were losing out on profit by giving me all this work that I had under them. I knew from that moment on that I had to start rethinking my entire future of being an entrepreneur and start deciding what to do.
- The Oil & Gas industry was far from back to where it was in 2013 and there was not much out there up for grabs in that industry. I needed a big change if I was to keep my success going. I
- t was over the next few months that I built Maroney Motors, Maroney Group Inc and Maroney Group Developments. It was the hardest moment to date of my career of being an entrepreneur and it was also the best damn thing to happen to me cause it made me think outside the box and start tapping into other industries.
If you would like to be featured in an upcoming “My Day” interview, please send me and email through my Contact page.