ABOUT VETERANS EMPLOYMENT SERVICES
The Joe Padlo Story
I sat back in my chair and stared at the ceiling. I knew the computer in front of me did not have any answers, so I decided to go for a run to reset my brain. On the way out the door, I passed through the garage and was struck with a new idea. It was the answer that I had been looking for, and it was right under my nose all along.
After finishing 12 years of service in the US Marine Corps, I went into corporate HR and recruiting. It was a tough transition, especially because I watched many of my highly skilled and trained military veteran peers struggle to land jobs at all, let alone ones they enjoyed. After one phone call too many telling yet another fellow veteran that I could not help them get a job, I decided to do something about it.
In December 2014, I established Veterans Elite Services. Its mission has always been to create career opportunities for veterans in need of work at any time. After much thought, I chose a commercial janitorial business to accomplish this mission. Military veterans are trained in many skills, especially cleaning. Not only is it one of the pillars of boot camp, but it can also be a matter of life and death. In the infantry, it is essential to properly clean and assemble your weapon regularly. Cleanliness quickly becomes second nature! The commercial janitorial industry allows us all to embrace our strengths with plenty of growth opportunities.
We did well early on and expanded quickly, but with COVID-19 we had to reconfigure the entire business. We completely ground to a halt as most of our clients shut down during lockdown. For a minute, it looked like all the sweat, tears and sacrifices I had poured into this were all for nothing. There was no way forward. Then, I recalled a former client.
We cleaned and sanitized an outpatient surgical center from 2018 through 2019. It was not sustainable with the business model we had at the time, so we stopped. However, I still had all the equipment, chemicals, and certifications for virucide sterilization in 2020. I had the answer everyone was looking for, including myself, in my garage the entire time.
I was able to hire back my staff and hit the ground running. We were at the forefront of sterilizing local businesses in order to keep our community safe for others. We always knew our work was impactful, but as virucide and safety became the forefront of our business, others took notice. Now we offer virucide treatment as part of our regular services. We enjoy serving and protecting our community as many of us once did in the military.
This company is everything to me because it is about more than just me and my story. I run my business with my staff, staying open to suggestions and improvements. Veterans Elite Services is about opportunity, service and taking pride in our work. It is a legacy that I share with all my employees and clients who depend on us.
Many times in our lives, we will face challenges. I have been competing in marathons and obstacle races since 2011. In business, life and racing, I recognize each moment when giving up becomes tempting. In that moment, I always remember I have overcome hard things before, and this time will be no different.
Whenever I am not working, I enjoy running, studying business and playing video games. My favorite part of my job is when a client meets my team and recognizes how great they are