Metro Septic has grown in customer base, service area, revenue and almost every other area in a short time. Learning to manage that success was the focus of Pumper magazine's profile on Metro Septic in the January issue.
"It gives me a lot of pride in what I do," Lee said about the article. "It's one think talking about it but actually seeing it in the national magazine and reading what they had printed, it just kind of rings a little different and puts myself in like a second-person position. It doesn't feel like it's me.
"Just thinking back on how I got here, I've been very blessed to get to where I've gotten."
Where he's gotten is from a small start-up, to running multiple crews almost around the clock. Lee got into the septic tank industry through plumbing. He was chosen to head up a new division formed by his previous employer which included liquid waste handling before branching off on his own. When he began, Lee stayed busy with referrals from his previous employer on jobs they did not take. When that company decided to end their "underground" division, Lee negotiated the acquisition of their equipment and accounts.
"I went from one guy and a truck doing two to three calls a week to having three pump trucks and getting probably about 30 calls a week, basically overnight," Lee said.
Overcoming that challenge was the basis of Pumper magazine's article entitled "Rightsizing." In business now for nearly seven years, Metro Septic is at a place Lee is comfortable with -- he credits that accomplishment to reliable employees.
"Everything runs a lot smoother now, it's kind of like a well-oiled machine. I've gotten to a point where I can look at growing and where we go from here and set some long-term goals," Lee said, adding praise for service technicians Casey Bohn and Toby Evans. "I have people call me probably every-other day telling what a great job they did. ... They talk about how Toby and Casey take pride in what they do, if it's late they're not rushing through it to get home. They take care of the customer first and foremost.
"I'm the owner, but I can't go to every job and stand over every single guy that's going to work for me and make sure they treat the customer right, make sure they're honest and do the job right. It's all in who you hire."
Metro Septic, specializing in septic tank pumping, repair, maintenance, replacement and fill line installation, is currently in their busy season, although this winter has proven to be unseasonably warm. During the cold, wet months, when septic problems are more prone to occur, Metro Septic works about four to six calls a day, seven days a week. Summer months slow down considerably, working almost half as many calls.
Lee envisions a bright future for his company and has plans to broaden their service line.
"We've got big plans for the future and the future is looking real good for us," Lee said. "We're getting to do a little bit more grease traps. That doesn't make up much of what we do, I'd say about 5 percent of revenue. I'm wanting to get more into that but in order to do that, we're looking into building a plant for processing grease and septic so we can get rid of it cheaper and that way lower our rates and be more competitive with the grease trap market."
Since their inclusion in Pumper magazine, Metro Septic has seen an increase in cold calls and has received some recognition from peers, including referrals from other Atlanta-area companies not able to serve northern counties.
For more information on Metro Septic, visit www.metroseptic.com, call 404-973-2472 or search for them on Facebook at www.facebook.com.