Kelly Seaman and her brother Shaun Rost grew up in the garage door business. Their dad, Ken Rost, founded Citywide Garage Door over 25 years ago. Inspired by their parents’ hard work and dedication, the siblings continue to grow Citywide today and remain vehemently committed to its success. Taking care of her family, the business, and its customers, are just some of the top priorities that fuel Kelly’s passion. Here’s a look into her career and more of what drives her success.
1. Tell us about your career path. What led you to your current position?
Throughout high school I worked at Citywide, helping my mom in the office. I graduated college with a bachelor’s in marketing and decided I wanted to try something different, to see what working for the “corporate world” would be like. I worked for a big company (unrelated to garage doors) for a couple of years and determined that it was not for me. I realized I loved working for our small family business, a place where we were proud of the products and services we provided. We could work with the customer one on one, start to finish, and make them genuinely happy... that’s a great feeling to have, to have pride in the company you work for.
2. What female leaders do you admire? How have they inspired your career in the garage door industry?
100 percent, my mom. Right after high school, my mom and dad got married and had kids. They built Citywide from the ground up. My mom had no secondary education and learned everything on her own, way before QuickBooks and ADP. While running a business, my mom was also a mother, and a great mother at that. She was very involved and hands on, always making sure we had what we needed, cooking amazing meals from scratch, attending our sporting events, while all the while being my dad’s right-hand in the business. I think when you’re growing up, you don’t realize what your parents really do for you until you become a parent yourself. When I look back at the sacrifices my parents made for us, it’s quite inspiring and humbling.
3. What was the best piece of advice you received?
Do not make excuses, just do it.
4. What challenges have you faced in your career as a woman?
How did you overcome them? I feel that sometimes women are not very well respected or taken seriously in this predominately male industry. To overcome this, I don’t take it too personally. I am good at my job, and I feel it shows and hopefully prove that I belong in this industry just as much as my male counterparts.
5. What advice would you give other women in your field?
Learn as much as you can. This industry is not black and white and there are a lot of variables. The more you know, the better you can be at your job.
6. Why is it important for more women to be represented in the garage door industry?
Besides the fact that women are competent, knowledgeable and just as important and essential as men, I also feel women can add a different perspective in the industry.