Toyota Entrepreneur of the Month
Eddie Barron learned about the tile business while he was growing up. As a kid, he watched his dad come and go, figuring and installing materials. Although his father wanted a different life for his son, Eddie felt it was a natural thing to follow in his dad’s footsteps.
“My father’s been doing this for 28 years,” Barron says. “What he wanted me to do was stay in school and go on a different path.”
Initially, the younger Barron tried office work, but was not satisfied with sitting at a desk, concentrating on paperwork. With his guidance and support, Barron decided to join his father in forming their own company, Barron Tile and Stone, Inc. It turned out that was the right thing to do.
“Every month we’re doing more and more work. It wasn’t what I was doing before (office work),” Barron says, adding that one must learn every aspect of running one’s own company. “It’s more of a big picture.”
The company doesn’t just install tile, Barron says. They also are natural stone fabricators, pouring custom-size pieces, as well as installing floors and countertops of granite and stone.
“About 70 percent of our business is on the custom side, rebuilding high-end homes. About 30 percent is just remodeling,” Barron says.
In Barron’s business, the toughest part often is engineering the right fit for the materials chosen. For example, the current craze in remodeling floors is centered on design medallions.
“The market really decides what’s trendy,” he says. “Right now it’s medallions. We do the installation. Technology has advanced to where it’s a water jet technique.” His company utilizes a machine that cuts the stone with a high-pressure stream of water.
“We custom size, that’s the most challenging,” he adds. “The designs are getting more elaborate.”
Barron is very busy running his family business while attending the Garvin School of International Management (Thunderbird) to earn his MBA. Yet he insists company employees remember what is most important.
“I just tell people to take care of the customers and get the job done right.”
Barron Tile and Stone, Inc.
5314 W. Luke Ave.