While cellular retail stores have been popping up across the United States for decades, very few of them are locally owned and operated stores helping to make a positive impact in the communities that they serve.
Wireless Zone, the only exclusive Verizon Wireless franchise, has stood out from others in the saturated segment by placing a priority on the community involvement of its franchisees. And while this approach has helped Wireless Zone expand nationwide, it’s really made an impact in smaller communities where superior customer service is key.
Recognizing this, the brand has strengthened its commitment to entering smaller markets and will be bringing its first location to Mississippi this month with an opening in Hernando. The location will be owned by franchisee Scott Orellana and operated by general manager Abbi Rychlock, who is excited to take on the challenge of introducing a new concept to her hometown.
“Wireless Zone gives me the tools I need to be successful by giving me a proven business model, allowing me the opportunity to focus on building relationships with our customers,” said Rychlock. “We know the community, understand the needs of our customers and understand their importance. Without their support, we wouldn’t be able to exist.”
Rychlock grew up in the Chicago suburbs where she started her career working for U.S. Cellular. In 2010, she was recruited by TCC to work as a sales market manager out of Mississippi with a territory that covered Mississippi, Tennessee and Arkansas. Over her seven-year career with TCC, she saw the area transform into a booming metropolis due to the growing trucking industry, with giants like Nike, Old Dominion and FedEx expanding into Mississippi. Rychlock and Orellana knew this was their opportunity to open a business at a time when the economy was thriving and thought Wireless Zone would be the perfect fit.
“Many of the businesses that you walk into now are just looking to make a quick sale, they don’t really care about the needs and wants of their customers,” according to Rychlock. “Wireless Zone’s approach is refreshing because the company prefers that the employees build relationships with every customer so you can better serve their needs.”
Rychlock was also excited to bring more jobs to the area, further supporting economic growth in Hernando.
“Wireless Zone doesn’t have a big presence in the South which I view as a huge expansion opportunity for us,” said Rychlock. “We’d love to introduce the Wireless Zone culture to other areas of the state but are committed to getting this first location up-and-running successfully first.”
And with Rychlock’s commitment to customer service and Orellana’s strong background in business ownership, executive director of development for Wireless Zone Keith Dziki is confident that growth is on the horizon.
“When selecting new franchisees, we seek out business-savvy individuals who are committed to becoming the local go-to wireless professional. The big emphasis is on local, as our franchisees become ingrained in the community and play an important role in our ongoing growth strategy,” said Dziki. “Abbi and Scott absolutely share our values, and I’m confident that they will make an impact in the market.”