(Pictured above – John Schuler and his father Emmet)
Since John’s entire business life (starting when he was a sophomore in high school) has revolved around shoes, I asked what interesting changes have taken place. He said it was the evolution of the shoes themselves. John gives credit to the European shoemakers that have improved the look of good, supportive shoes. No longer do quality shoes that offer support and comfort have to look orthopedic.
In fact, people around the Twin Cities have noticed this evolution as well. While the high level of customer service and quality of shoes at Schuler Shoes hasn’t changed, the look of the shoes offer a more upbeat and hip option in many of the brands that have been around for years. Over the years people have recognized Schuler Shoes as their parent’s shoe store. Well, it still is…along with their best friend and their aunt and their cousin and their daughter and their brother and their son. In fact, now days you can find the perfect shoe for everyone for almost every activity and every event under the sun.
I asked John what he enjoys most about his job and he told me that he loves working with his family. He is proud and feels lucky that they have built the business up enough, so that his kids and their spouses (and now 2 grandchildren) can play a part in the family business.
I also asked John if the dynamic is similar to when he worked with his Dad. He explained that since his Dad was on the road so much he wasn’t able to work alongside him and learn the business from him. He truly enjoys working side by side with his kids and their spouses and building the business together.
A fifth generation has just entered Schuler Shoes, as 2 of John’s grandchildren are learning the shoe business from the ground up starting in the stockroom.
Great looking shoes and more Schulers… Who could ask for more?
Check back tomorrow for Part 3 as John talks about customer service, success and faith.