Hardware Retailing

SEP 2017

Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.

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HARDWARE RETAILING | September 2017 60 NRHA Chairman Megan Menzer Never Doubted Where Her Career Path Would Lead Raised in Retail I f you could ask 10-year-old Megan Menzer what she wanted to be when she grew up, you might be surprised by her answer. She wouldn't rattle off the typical vocations like doctor, astronaut or veterinarian. No, even at 10 years old, little Megan knew her career would lie in hardware retailing. She had seen generations of women before her who were actively involved in the family's hardware business, and in between her playtime and homework, Megan would dream of the day when she would add her name to the list of strong women who sat at the helm of Newton's True Value, the family business based in Cherryvale, Kansas. Menzer, who is now co-owner and president of the two-store operation, was so confident about her career path that while other kids were playing video games, she would head to the store's back office to practice her 10-key skills. "I wasn't necessarily like the other kids," Menzer recalls. "I liked to go in the office and practice on the 10-key just to see how fast I could get. Most other kids didn't even know what a 10-key was, but I would practice using it with both my left hand and right hand." So when her father, Joe, came home from work one summer afternoon and found Megan playing in the front yard, she was thrilled when he asked the question she had been waiting years to hear: "Would you like to start working at the store?" "I remember it like it was yesterday," Menzer says. "I remember him getting out of his truck, walking up to me and asking if I would like to start working at the store two days a week. I was in fifth grade at the time, and I just couldn't have been more excited." Today, more than three decades after Menzer accepted her first job with Newton's True Value, she has made quite a career out of running the business that was founded by her great-grandparents and later run by her great-grandmother, Grace Newton. Despite the business being nearly 100 years old, Menzer has overseen the operation during some of its most dramatic changes, including complete resets, product additions and an expansion into a second location in nearby Independence, Kansas. By Dan Tratensek, dant@nrha.org

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