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Building Competency as a Boss While Growing a Business

From the physical environment to interactions with employees, the Uncommon Closet experience is intentionally inclusive. Business-owner Korri has created a tailoring shop that is welcoming to all

By | Emily Washcovick |

In building a small business, most owners think of expansion as a clear marker of their success. Bigger is better. More clients equals more revenue. But rapid expansion can actually hurt your small business if it’s not done properly with the right tools and resources.

That’s a lesson Korri Burton-Universe, owner of Uncommon Closet, a custom clothing and tailor resource, learned the hard way. After a slow 2020, business started to pick up in 2021 as weddings were being rescheduled.

“Then 2021 hits, and it’s like, oh, we need to take every client. We can’t turn anybody down. Oh, dear God. Now we’re drowning. It was really rough. I ended up losing some of my key employees, which was really hard. I upset a lot of people, and I will be honest about that. It was a really hard year,” Korri said.

Uncommon Closet lost several key staff members to burnout, but an assistant manager gave some great feedback in a resignation letter, and Korri took the time to really listen. That led to some changes in the hiring process as well as their business .

Korri said, “We got it together. I got a business advisor, and we were planning, ‘What do we want?’ Really narrowed down who we needed to hire, what type of people we wanted. I’ve been learning so much in the past six, seven months of how to hire the proper staff and not just panic hire. How to better communicate what I need and understand what my staff needs and really regulate the flow of work. I’ve gotten a lot better at that.”

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