Jayne Flanagan - Woman to Watch Class of 2015
President at Michiana Brick
Classic Image Photography
Jayne Flanagan is the president and majority owner of Michiana Brick, joining her father's 20 year old company. An RN by degree, becoming majority owner and embarking upon an adventure in the brick and block business was a unique learning experience complete with incredible challenges. Under Jayne's leadership, Michiana Brick has grown in the hardscape market while consistently providing impeccable customer service and quality designer products. She enjoys the challenge of watching Michiana Brick grow and takes pride in the finished projects of her customers. In 2013, Michiana Brick Home Center was opened in Granger. This solidified a partnership with Ginger Valley Garden Center as well as gave the public an outdoor shopping arena. Jayne enjoys reaching beyond her comfort zone and building alliances with quality manufacturers, other distributors and contractors. She was responsible for bringing the Techo-Bloc brand to Indiana, as its first distributor. Her passion for building relationships is as important to her as "turning backyard dreams into realities." Jayne continues to work in the field of nursing as a hospice nurse for Hospice at Home in St. Joseph Michigan. In 2014, her dream of creating a network for area women in construction was realized with Michiana Women in Construction. She serves as Secretary for Women Business Owners of Michiana, is a member of Business Women United Network, Michiana Networking, Granger Professional Networking, St. Joseph County Chamber of Commerce, Granger Business Association and St. Pius X Catholic Church & School.
Just In A Day's Work:
How did you choose your line of work?
My work chose me, or rather my father did! My dad, Greg Gluchowski, knew I was looking for a business. He gave me the opportunity to buy into Michiana Brick as majority owner and president. As a nurse by degree, I knew nothing about brick or block so I had a tremendous learning curve! I think I have surprised us both at the growth we have had since 2011!
Who inspires you professionally?
I am a strong supporter of fellow business women! I try to surround myself with women I respect, admire and are supportive of each other. I am inspired daily by the women of MWIC (Michiana Women in Construction) and WBOM (Women Business Owners of Michiana). Supporting each other while growing our businesses is what it is all about. Each business success for one of us is celebrated by all of us! I am inspired by their achievements, energy and love for each other. I am grateful and blessed to have each and every one of them on my support team! I am also inspired by the men in my life including my dad, my husband and my cousin, Rich! Their work ethics
influence mine and continue to make me strive to grow Michiana Brick.
What was the best business advice you have received and who gave it?
When I had a meltdown about the risk (of my retirement funds) of building the Granger store, my husband hugged me and said, "The worst that could happen is you fail and guess what- that is okay. You can survive failure and be a better person for it. But the important thing is, you have tried!" I really needed that presentation of reality and am
so grateful to have taken the opportunity!
What are some of the obstacles (if any) you have faced as a woman in your workplace?
As a woman in a male dominated industry, obstacles are just a way of life! I have to prove my knowledge and tenacity in most aspects of day-to-day business! I was one of the few women at brick school. My toolkit includes a continuous updating of my knowledge base in my products, industry standards, desires of my customers and my smile! When armed with these, I can tackle any obstacle!
What is your single best piece of advice for women in business?
Believe in yourself. Surround yourself with those that believe in YOU. Let their positivity and support guide you when your belief in yourself is faltering. Let the negative people go!
The Balancing Act:
What does “success” mean to you?
Success to me is letting my personality shine through all I do and feeling secure in my own skin. Taking pride in the quality of goods and services I provide and having the support of my friends and family while helping others achieve their dreams makes me happy and feel successful.
What’s your best secret to “having it all?"
Having a great support system in place, my husband, my family, my friends and my fellow women in business who can pick up my slack if needed or catch me when I fall.
How do you stay organized?
My organization skills are a work in progress! I make a lot of lists, am now using my phone for a calendar and check my email frequently. I tend to juggle a lot and try my best to pull it all together!
What is your favorite non-work activity or hobby?
Spending time with my family, cooking and entertaining. I love to throw a fun party!
What is your favorite form of stress relief?
Girl’s night out at Hacienda or Bar Louie!
10 SASSY Facts About Jayne Flanagan:
Favorite Guilty Pleasure:
Shopping! My grandma Annie was a shopper and taught me to appreciate a bargain. I can shop ‘til I drop!
Favorite TV Show:
Of all time: Friends Current: The Goodwife, Nashville and Big Bang (All DVR'd so I don't miss any episodes!)
Favorite Scented Candle:
Evergreen and anything Christmas Scented!
There are too many to list but I love Jodi Picoult and Phillipa Gregory books. My inspirational book was Brick by Brick: A Woman's Journey by Lynne Donohue.
My Aunt Gee's chocolate cake with butter cream icing!
Favorite beauty product?
Anything Mary Kay! I have used their skin care for over 40 years and attribute my great skin to Mary Kay.
Biggest Pet Peeve:
Dishonesty and not admitting errors. Everyone makes mistakes! Accept responsibility, apologize
and move forward. I don't like drama.
What do you think makes up a SASSY woman?
Sassy women are honest, empowered to speak her mind and driven to be the best she can be in every aspect of her life. A Sassy woman supports other women in business and lifts them up in their endeavors.
What makes you feel the SASSIEST?
I feel sassy when I feel confident and good about me! I believe in laughter and letting your personality shine through in any situation.
If you were a shoe, describe what you would be and why?
A nice comfortable Sperry Docksider or a comfy low heeled boot! I have several pairs of shoes under my desk at work. A girl can never have too many pairs of shoes!