Beware Misleading Moving Companies
Florida is a tropical paradise located in the south eastern tip of the United States. It could be considered a sunny place for shady characters as its rumored to be the white-collar crime capital of the country. Statistics also show that moving complaints are most concentrated in the Sunshine State.
For these reasons moving companies need to find ways to market their business to appeal to the consumer. Hence the “family owned and operated” image is very popular in titles and advertising. lt pulls at the heart strings of anxious people thinking a, “nice family” has a long history of operating with a handed-down honest, hard work ethic. The
unfortunate reality is movers with “family” sounding names and large marketing budgets often are among the very companies stacking lots of consumer complaints!
The Joe Bonnie Difference
My family’s Delray Beach operation JOE BONNIE & SON MOVING & STORAGE located in Palm Beach County Florida is the real deal. On top of the fact that we always conduct ethical transactions, we use our own trained, insured employees. We never use day labor for our packing and moving teams like many of the competitors. Our storage facility is hurricane code constructed, immaculate AND air conditioned. Quite frankly, if everyone who said they were running an ethical, family business with full time employees were really doing that, it would be difficult for Florida to boast the most moving scams in the nation.
My grandfather, Al Sr., started our business in 1941 in New York’s Flatbush Brooklyn. My father, Joe Bonnie Sr., the second generation, along with our mother Naomi, relocated us from Hauppauge, Long lsland to South Florida in 1981. History shows the generational relay occurs roughly every 30-40 years. Although Joe Sr. is not fully retired, the third generation took over in the early 21st Century. My brother Joe II and my two sister’s husbands Jason aka Luke and Lee are currently at the helm. Along with me, my twin Catherine, younger sister Liz and sister in law Janis, run the office and do sales and estimating. In 2003, the gals would cart the youngest seven of Joe Sr. and Naomi’s nine grandchildren into the office with them. Talk about a family business!
Moving is in Our Blood
We built our first office and warehouse building in 2001. We designed a large conference room which ended up being used as a universal playroom and nursery. Only until the last five years is it now serving its correct purpose. Now housing a wall-mounted TV and a large conference table, this is still the site you will find grandchildren doing homework, arts and crafts, or watching a movie while waiting for their moms to finish work. The older of the fourth generation is starting to make its mark in the business. My twin sister’s son and daughter, Jim and Melissa, work full-time in the business, and my brother’s son, Joey III, works in the warehouse during summer and school breaks.
Many customers ask me why the business is named for the son while there are daughters in the mix. I joke a lot about this. The truth is our company, JOE BONNIE & SON MOVING & STORAGE, was established and branded long before any of the ladies came on board in 2000. As well as instilling a sensational work ethic in us and our employees, Joe Sr. is the resident caterer. Through the years, he would drive all the grand kids to preschool and elementary school, go to work on a packing or moving job, then rush home to prepare dinner for the “troops”. With the offer to sit down or take home plates of chicken cutlets and baked ziti, one by one or in groups, we would show up at the senior Bonnie’s dining table. My whole family works in this business and lives within a five block radius of one another, so we are often dining together. But on those week nights in particular, I know my Dad was trying to take some pressure off the moms working in our family business.
How We’ve Succeeded
Studies reveal that most family business’s dissolve in the second generation. Maybe that’s because each generation feeling more entitled works less to maintain it. Also when most people try to leave work at work, we are going home with our work AND coworkers! Either way, along with being an exception to the facade of sounding like a family run business, we have the grand children and great grandchildren working in the office and on our trucks. Some days are harder than others. But we love each other and know how lucky we are.