Local Small Business Owner Shares her Entrepreneurial Success Story with the Atlanta Women's Foundation
Simpson, President and Founder of
Smooth Solutions Relocation &
Logistics Services, a relocation company that recognizes the special needs of families, recently shared the inspirational story of how she founded her small business with attendees of the
9th Annual Economic Justice for Women Reception held at Atlanta's Grand Hyatt Buckhead. The reception, sponsored by the Atlanta Women's Foundation and featuring a keynote speech by entrepreneur and philanthropist Mrs. Sheila Johnson, recognized the importance of a commitment to the economic power of women.
The inspiration for Ms. Simpson's business came while preparing to move her mother from Georgia to Michigan and the firsthand discovery of the unique challenges that come with relocating a senior citizen. From organizing and packing to estate sales and item donations, Ms. Simpson experienced an overwhelming process that needed to be streamlined and immediately saw the opening for a new business opportunity.
With her own
money and the expertise she learned
from the Women's Economic
Development Agency (WEDA), an
Atlanta-area organization that
provides business development and
management, Ms. Simpson launched her
own business. Now in its fourth
year, Smooth Solutions Relocation &
Logistics Services has seen significant growth in the Atlanta area and a franchise model is in development. In addition, Ms. Simpson was recently selected as a National Grand Prize Winner in the "Make Mine a Million $ Business" contest for women entrepreneurs sponsored by Count-Me-In and Open from American Express.
"I was humbled and inspired by Mrs. Sheila Johnson's presentation and honored to be recognized by The Atlanta Women's Foundation, one of the nation's most respected women's organizations," said Ms. Simpson. "As one of its chief benefactors, I thank them for helping my entrepreneurial dream become a reality."
Black Enterprise Business Report
Entrepreneur of the Week
View more news stories
Right out of high school,
Adrienne Simpson landed a job at Blue Cross Blue
Shield of Michigan as a clerk typist. Twenty
years later, she moved to Atlanta and became the
director of operations for Cigna HealthCare.
Senior citizens were her favorite clients. They still are.
"When it came time for my 70-year-old mother to
move, she needed help figuring out what to
bring, sell and give away. I couldn't find
movers that assisted with prep and unpacking, so
I did it all, from organizing an estate sale, to
shipping designated items to family members and
charities, to hanging pictures in the new place.
Mom bragged to friends about how she didn’t life
a finger, and my phone started ringing with
requests to help other elderly people move.
Six years ago, after being downsized out of two director of operations jobs that she loved, and unable to find a new position, Adrienne Simpson, a single mom from Atlanta, fell into a depression. "I just shut down," she admits. But she know she had to pull herself out of it when she noticed her 12-year-old daughter falling with her. On their own for a decade, mother and daughter had always cited "girl power" as their source of strength. "Once day she said to me, 'Mom, what about girl power?'" recalls Adrienne, now 53. In that moment, she know she couldn't let her daughter see her defeated.
Most business owners measure success by revenues
and profits. But for Adrienne Simpson, owner of
Smooth Solutions in Stone Mountain, Georgia, success has more to do with the number of people she can help, whether it's seniors relocating to retirement communities or young people with less-then-stellar employment histories looking for work. "Business has to be about more than the money," says Simpson.
American Express Make Mine a $Million Business Award
Make Mine a Million $ Business, a program of Count Me In for Women's Economic Independence, the leading national not-for-profit provider of business resources and community support for women entrepreneurs seeking to grow micro businesses to million dollar enterprises, and founding partner American Express OPEN, is helping to inspire thousands of women to grow and prosper as the country emerges from recession.
The population of America is living longer,
healthier lives. In the United States, one in
every six people will be older than age 65 by
the year 2020. Every six seconds, someone in
America is turning 60. By 2020, more than 75
million Americans will be older than age 65, and
nearly 7 million more will be older than 85.
Many of these seniors are choosing to relocate
to retirement communities and smaller homes to
reduce the responsibilities of managing a house.
Seniors don’t move because they want to. They
move because they have to, and as such, have a
myriad tasks and decisions to make.
Seeing an Opportunity Led Executive to Make a Move
The care Adrienne Simpson and her staff provide
during a move extends beyond the household items
to the senior citizens, who often are upset to
leave their home. Aging residents overwhelmed
and saddened by the transition are frequent
clients for Simpson's Smooth Solutions. On moving day, members of her crew often take the time to hug clients and reassure them that it's going to be OK.
Getting laid off from my cushy corporate executive job is one of the best things that ever happened to me. Thousands face downsizing every year. I'm here to tell you, it can lead to a larger life with more meaning and purpose than you ever imagined.
Opening New Business a
'Smooth Solutions' With Help from SBA Resource Partners
Sometimes circumstances can help make a new career almost fall into a person's lap. In the case of Adrienne Simpson, it all started when she had to move her mother back to Michigan after living in Atlanta near her for several years.
A Moving Experience: New Industry Helps Seniors Relocate
Adrienne Simpson of Atlanta, Georgia got into
the senior moving business after helping her
mother move. She established her company, Smooth
Solutions in 2002. An NASMM member, Simpson provides her customers with a detailed checklist to help prepare them for the move.
Seniors are among the most likely to move, as they downsize or head off to sunny retirement digs. Yet moves can be especially hard on them, with heavy lifting and countless details to deal with, from emptying an attic to reconnecting and entertainment system.
Georgia and Florida Women Entrepreneurs Collect OPEN from American Express(sm)
OPEN(SM), Count-Me-In and Women's Leadership Exchange Enlist Team of Business Coaches to Help Craft Million-Dollar Business Plans.
Women own 10.6 million privately help businesses in the United States; yet, just 3% of them generate annual revenues above $1Million Business Awards at yesterday's Women’s Leadership Exchange (WLE) conference in Atlanta, two Georgia women and a professor from Central Florida are on the path to join the elite ranks of Million-dollar-women-owned businesses.
Since 1998, the Atlanta Women's Foundation has
invested more than $10 million into our
community. In 2008 alone, more than $1 million
went to more than 23 high-impact organizations.
The goal of our approach to confronting the
economic crisis - be it current or chronic - is
that women everywhere can be lifted up like
Adrienne Simpson of Atlanta.
Smooth Solutions to it’s employee Passport Unlimited Program.
The Passport Unlimited program gives employees
access to a wide range of products, goods, and
services. The program is designed to make
employee lives easier. Smooth Solutions is proud and honored to be featured along with companies like Intel, Oracle, Apple, Hewlett-Packard, Yahoo!, and Weyerhauser
Please contact us at (678) 476-6666 or visit our
quick online estimate to
discuss how we can make your next move Smooth!
Hillary Clinton and Adrienne Simpson at the 2006 kickoff of the National Womens Week, Press Club, Washington, DC
"Just wanted to let you know your employees did a great job for us this past Saturday. They were there promptly at nine and took great care with the furniture. They were very hard workers and most polite."
"Again, thanks for a job well done, and I will certainly call on you again if the need arises."
Sincerely - Kathleen
"Our experience with Smooth Solutions last week was very positive. The movers were professional, courteous, and efficient."