CE Pro August 2021 - 34

CE PROFILE | Theater Advice / Really Shady
Family Affair
David and Alissa Huse of Theater Advice form symbiotic
partnership to grow the business, and incorporate family
elements into their new retail showroom. By Jason Knott,
photography by St.Clair Photography
FOR DAVID AND ALISSA HUSE,
operating Theater Advice is certainly a
family affair. The duo has found an ideal
delineation of responsibilities for their Frisco,
Texas, operation that leverages both of their
strengths to create a growing custom
installation business. The results of their
success can offer some solid lessons for other
family-run operations where it can sometimes
be difficult to know when to devote
the proper time and energy to personal
versus professional needs.
In business for 14 years, Theater Advice has
Quick Stats
Company: Theater Advice /
Really Shady
Location: Frisco, Texas
Website: theateradvice.
com, reallyshady.com
Revenues (2020):
$2.5 million
Years in Business: 14
Number of Employees: 11
Top Brands: Screen Innovations,
Epson, Bowers
& Wilkins, MartinLogan,
Sonos, Control4
FYI: " Marry an amazing
woman. "
found a solid niche in the highly competitive
Dallas-area market with a retail storefront, a
solid slate of homebuilder clients, and an increasing
focus on the motorized shade market.
Indeed, the company's shade control business
has become so successful it has led to a spinoff
website devoted entirely to the category.
But all that success did not come easy.
When David Huse launched the company,
he was the epitome of a one-man shop, handling
sales, installation, marketing, finance,
procurement, service, etc. Meanwhile, Alissa
was pursuing her own career as the vice
president of a large financial company.
" I used to work 110 hours per week, " he
notes. " I'm not kidding. I slept three hours
per night and worked every other second of
the day. That's just how I am. "
Eventually (and at Alissa's suggestion), David
began hiring a team for sales and installation.
Slowly and reluctantly, Alissa started
helping out by doing some of the payroll and
accounting.
" David was making money and was successful,
but it was chaos - and I can't stand
34 | CE Pro August 2021
chaos, " she quips. " Our life runs very efficiently
and that's how I want the company to
run as well. I don't want it to be Corporate
America, but it's got to be somewhere in
between the two things. So I just started to
get more involved as much as I could. "
Life Partner Becomes Business
Partner
Starting in 2017, Alissa began taking on a
more active role. Today, she is the full-time
managing director of operations, having
retired from her banking job.
" The company is to a point where it needs
to be managed a little bit tighter to optimize
on this growth trajectory that we have in our
brains. I needed to come on board to move
things in the right direction, " she says.
For David, having his life partner alongside
as a business partner has been a godsend.
" We would have no employees if it was
up to me. It took Alissa to say, 'Do you know
we need to hire people?' I had to hire four
people immediately just to make me not
feel completely insane. That's only as of two
years ago. Since then, the growth has been
exponential, " says David. Today, Theater
Advice has 11 employees.
" Alissa is such an integral part of what we
do. People see me as the face of the company,
and I think she prefers that ... even
though she's a lot prettier than me, " chuckles
David. " The reality is that she does everything
it takes to run the business. She came
into that role because I either wasn't doing
it, wasn't doing it enough, or wasn't doing it
well. I'm just a salesman when it comes down
to it. I'm an old computer guy. "
cepro.com
http://www.reallyshady.com http://www.cepro.com

CE Pro August 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of CE Pro August 2021

CE Pro August 2021 - Presentation
CE Pro August 2021 - Cover1
CE Pro August 2021 - Cover2
CE Pro August 2021 - 1
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CE Pro August 2021 - Cover3
CE Pro August 2021 - Cover4
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