“If we don’t have it, we’ll get it.” That’s the credo at Leeway True Value in North Smithfield, Rhode Island, and it captures perfectly owner Michelle Deschamps’ passion for the hardware business and the key to the store’s success against big-box competition.
A true family business Michelle has helped out around Leeway True Value, the store her parents founded, since she was seven years old. Many of the store’s regular customers remember Michelle when she was a little girl, and now she’s helping those customers’ kids and grandkids. Family serving family. That’s the beauty of the independent hardware store.
Growth through DTV and lawn and garden When Michelle took over running the store, she did her homework—research told her lawn and garden was a key growth area. “It’s a strong, profitable category built on repeat business,” she tells us. “Today, we do better than half our year’s sales in the spring season.” She has since invested in success with a DTV remodel and a new, separate facility for Leeway’s lawn and garden business.
Merging passion and career “I remember my job search after I graduated from college,” Michelle says. “I soon realized I already had a place where I could do what I absolutely love.” For her, it’s all about loving what you do, and customers are responding—more are choosing her brand of personalized service over big-box competitors every day.
Michelle Deschamps, Leeway True Value