ELLERBE — If Pamela Turner filled out a classified ad, it might read: “Hard worker, people person, loves cleaning and painting relaxes me.”
All of those attributes led her to start a business called The Works that will not only clean, but paint and do everything in between.
Turner was a paralegal for 17 years, 10 of which were in Richmond County, the other seven in Southern Pines. She has a special-needs son and after ending her career as a paralegal, she needed more flexibility with her job.
“I dabbled and started with a couple houses, but it built faster than I thought,” she said.
Her new venture began with just residential clients, using fliers and business cards, but mostly word of mouth. After that came the businesses. Turner now finds herself now cleaning for all Exit Realty and Hayden Construction properties.
She said she could have up to 20 residential jobs at any given time, but to her, it’s about more than cleaning somebody’s home.
“My main thing is it’s not about cleaning someone’s house and then leaving. I get close to these people,” she said. “It’s very important to me that people trust me. I sit down and have a 10-minute conversation (with them). I don’t just go in and clean. I get close with the families.
Turner, who has now moved into outside and inside painting, found herself at Camp Millstone outside Ellerbe helping the camp get ready for the ribbon-cutting for the new State Employees Credit Union Learning Center that took place last weekend.
“As far as the camp, it’s been two to three years painting and cleaning,” said Turner. “I do all the painting that’s done out here. Any building you see out here.”
With 14 cabins, a dining hall, recreation hall and staff house, it can be a lot of work to keep all those clean in addition to touching them up with paint when needed.
“I think it’s doing very well and this camp, I’ve watched it grow and it’s been great for me,” she said. “Painting relaxes me.”
Turner said she began in 2009 when her mother passed away and got serious about it as a job in 2010, but with so much growth, she’s now hiring her own workers and painters. It’s a growing business, she said, and she wants it to grow even more.
“I want it to get to the point where I go get the business and have people do the work,” she said. “I feel like I’m a people person. People feel comfortable around me. I form relationships.”
The Works’s motto is “Let me take a load off,” and Turner means it.
“I have a quick response time. Whatever I’ve got to do, I’m on it,” she said. “The Works means there isn’t anything I won’t do. So I don’t just clean, I don’t just paint. I cover all the bases.”
Although most of her clientele are elderly people who can’t do it themselves, she also assists working families that simply don’t have time to clean, paint or complete whatever the household job may be. But Turner isn’t yet satisfied with where her business currently stands.
“I want to branch into carpet cleaning and lawn maintenance,” Turner said. “I want to venture out and grow it out more than it is now.”
Reach reporter Matt Harrelson at 910-817-2674, follow him on Twitter @mattyharrelson and listen to him at 12:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays on G-104.3 FM.