Before Co-founding CraftJack and becoming its Chief Operating Officer, Noah Mishkin, grew up enthusiastic about construction. This helped shape his decision to spend seven years earning and receiving advanced degrees in Architecture from Wentworth Institute of Technology. He then began a three-year career as an architectural designer for SAS Architects and Planners. Even though it was a great firm with remarkable colleagues, he began to realize that the work he was doing didn’t allow him to stretch his creative legs as he imagined; it wasn’t filling his gas tank.
After a fortuitous call with a good friend Ross Gordon, co-founder of CraftJack, Noah felt he had been given the permission he needed to leave a career that wasn’t speaking to him nor meeting his professional and personal needs. In 2009, in the middle of a recession, and when many of his fellow graduates were still looking for any work they could get, Gordon and Mishkin, took a leap of faith and began the creative start-up.
It was there that he honed his skills in sales, customer service, product, and business development as well as content marketing. Mishkin soon discovered this was his sweet spot and has found that being creative conceptually in the area of business has provided him far more opportunities to be creative than he found working as an architect.
Very quickly, Gordon and Mishkin began to notice that there were a number of opportunities in the home service space and quickly advanced the business from creating small niche sites, like localpaintersquotes.com, into a broad building contractor tool that could be used by any type of contractor from roofers, to plumbers, to flooring installation experts—hence, in 2010, CraftJack began.
While others may have been intimidated by the big names out there who were doing similar things in the industry, Mishkin admits that being a bit naïve afforded them the ability to be gutsy. With conceptual and sympathetic creative ideation, CraftJack’s mission from inception to the present has been and is to deliver digital marketing tools and strategies, to help contractors and service providers grow their businesses. Those tools and strategies include quality leads, content, Because of its effectiveness, continuing innovations, and solid business model, the company quickly appeared on HomeAdvisor’s radar, and CraftJack was purchased in 2012.
While others may have been intimidated… Mishkin admits that being a bit naive afforded them the ability to be gutsy.
As one of HomeAdvisor’s technology innovation partners, Mishkin and colleagues continued to ideate. One of CraftJack’s latest and most successful technological tools is the development of a specialized CRM, (customer relationship management tool). Mishkin’s own experience with a CRM to try to manage his leads while building CraftJack, quickly showed him that the customizable tools out there were very difficult to use, even for a tech-savvy guy like himself.
This opened his eyes to the needs of CraftJack’s contractors, many of whom were still using a notepad and pencils in their trucks to keep track of their leads and jobs.
He knew CraftJack could do better by its clients and CTO, Ryan McDonnell, they started designing CraftJack Lead Manager which launched in 2017 and since has helped contractors in the home and commercial building industry to manage leads, track and follow-up on calls, run reports for evaluation of effectiveness, among others.
In addition to Lead Manager, CraftJack’s special dedicated account management services are something that makes Mishkin and its other founders extremely proud. At CraftJack, they understand that the product is only as good as its user, so being able to walk contractors through the products, help them understand how to utilize them in order to grow as well as examine what is and isn’t working, are as essential as the tools themselves. The dedicated account managers develop an ongoing rapport with their specified clients rather than handling one-time customer service clients. CraftJack users are in essence, given a quality mentor and coach who continually guides them in the utilization of all of CraftJack’s tools and services available.
Along with creating a great product, Mishkin [has] fostered a culture that is focused on a growth mindset.
Along with creating a great product, Mishkin and the leadership at CraftJack have fostered a culture that is focused on a growth mindset as well as an ideology that humans spend more waking hours at work than at home with their families which means it is important to him that the team at CraftJack truly values the time spent in the office.
As a team, they plan a number of events to develop a familial atmosphere, provide unique opportunities to collaborate and learn, and encourage an open-door policy that includes encouraging their team to make their workspace comfortable and productive.
One of the most inspirational aspects of the work Noah does at CraftJack is talking to and helping hardworking contractors whom he considers the “salt of the Earth,” everyday people who are trying to run and build a business while performing hours of labor to put food on their family’s plates. Mishkin found talking to them came quite easily because the contractors he talked with were so passionate about what they do. This passion, Mishkin understands well and is one of the reasons he and his partners created the company in the first place. It’s also why he continues to do and love what he does—improving and changing the lives and businesses of their clients. What could be better?
Mishkin also works hard to improve the work he does at CraftJack and on boards of non-profits, including educational and community organizations. Recently Noah attended Northwestern’s Kellogg Business School’s, Board Member Institute where he worked with a diverse group of individuals from a myriad of industries. The experience taught him to challenge his assertions and gave him a number of tools and knowledge to help him be a greater asset to non-profits as well as CraftJack, no doubt.