Many times, the work of business people, especially business owners, is connected to their skill set or what they enjoy doing. Some-one interested in computers might have an IT managed services business or a computer repair company. It is easy to see what businesses might be started and run by gardeners, mechanics, cooks, or people who love working with children.
While that is relatively true of Jen Staggs, what truly makes her successful in her business and life is her desire to make connections, build relationships and help make others – and her community – successful. Her eyes light up and her speech gets a little faster when she is talking about how someone around her has achieved one or more of their goals.
Jen Staggs is the regional sales manager for Lenders Escrow & Title Services (LETS), a company based in Carmel. That declarative sentence is true but does not really explain any-thing about her.
Start at the beginning
Since she was eight-and-a-half years old, Staggs has called Martinsville home. In fact, she and her husband, Rick, reared their two children; Eric, now 27, and Brian, now 26, in the same home she lived in as a child. They purchased the home in what she calls “a little piece of heaven” in the Lake Edgewood area from her parents and refurbished it. Her mother has lived with the family for the last 18 years.
Not interested in following the crowd to college after graduating from high school, Staggs attended Southeastern Academy in Kissimmee, Florida pursuing an associate degree in marketing and advertising. She says she stumbled upon the school and program but that it has made a huge difference in her life. “It gave me the business sense to know what it takes to grow a business, market a business, and to market myself,” Staggs said. “It gave me the background and opportunity to go into any business.”
She was a little girl who rode her bike to the department store downtown Martinsville and dreamed of one day being a business person who could wear all the beautiful clothes she saw there. With her degree in hand, she returned to Martinsville honestly believing she would follow in her dad’s footsteps and work in sales for a trucking company. “But then I started having kids,” Staggs said, “and I decided to stay at home for the next fourteen years.” She did not actually just stay home. Instead she started a residential cleaning company and ran it to supplement their income for more than a decade.
What she calls her first job was selling ads for the local radio station, WCBK 102.3. After about a year, she left to join Roger and Patty Coffin working at Action Title. She worked there until it closed eight years later after Patty passed away.
But what she discovered during that time was that she loved the business and the people. “I learned I love helping people get what they want out of life,” Staggs said. “helping people succeed in buying a home. Purchasing a home is one the steps every person goes through and where people truly become adults.”
The business of a title company is to secure the transaction and insure the property being purchased against liens, encumbrances, and encroachments. It provides a clear title so that there are no surprises that crop up in the future.
Work is personal
Staggs explains that it is an emotional business, too. She shares the story of an older widower who brought the amortization schedule from his original purchase to the closing. His long-time home was being sold to a couple buying their first home. The man had ticked off every payment on the schedule and written the check number from the payment next to the checkmark. This simple act showed how much his home meant to him and illustrates that a title closing is more than a simple business transaction.
“It is so exciting watching first-time home-buyers get the keys to their new home,” Staggs said. “They talk about what they are going to paint and where their furniture is going to be placed.” To Staggs her business, and her life, is about people and the community. It is personal.
After Action Title closed, she joined Lenders Escrow & Title Services (LETS), as did her colleague, Shannon Wiggins, who was an experienced search and examiner. The company already had branches in Carmel, Pendleton, and Shelbyville and mobile closers to service the entire state.
Shannon Wiggins knew the title business inside and out. She was also from Martinsville and had been a long-time friend of Staggs’ mother. Together, along with owner and attorney Candace Broady, they floated the idea of bringing LETS to Morgan County. “We already had the rapport, trust, and knowledge to build branches in Morgan County together,” Staggs said. “I knew with the connections and good relationships we both had in the legal community and in the courthouse, LETS could be successful here. It just made sense.”
The Martinsville branch opened in 2017 and a year later, the branch in Mooresville opened. “We had enough business flow that we needed both branches,” Staggs said. True to her personality, it is important that the people they do business with here in Morgan County know that not only will they get a quality product from LETS, they will be treated like family and be of the utmost importance at the moment they call.Read the Full September 2019 Edition Here