CEDIA interviews Karen Chugg at Intelligent Abodes
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CEDIA interviews Karen Chugg, Managing Director of Intelligent Abobes, celebrating 10 years in business providing smart home control.
Tell us how and when your company was established
The company was established in June 2008, following an interesting discussion with Tim, my husband and business partner. We both liked our gadgets and this, combined with our experience in the building and electrical industry, inspired us to explore the potential of a smart home control company in the South West of England. I set up the company with a view to do all the marketing and sales. It was slow going initially, but then the hard work paid off and we started to work on some very exciting projects. We realised at that point, we had to focus on one business, so we both gave up our other businesses and started to work as a team.
What’s been the biggest achievement for the company during this time?
We have been incredibly lucky to work with some wonderful people that are well respected members of the business community in the South West; being selected to undertake the smart integration in their homes has been a
great compliment. In 2016, we were part of the team that worked on the boutique hotel, Lympstone Manor owned by Michael Caines OBE. We continue to have a great relationship with Michael Caine, working on further integration and local events.
Also, in 2016, we teamed up with the Apple Business Team in the South west providing presentations and open evenings to clients and local businesses at the Apple stores. This increased client awareness of smart home solutions and helped us to improve knowledge of integration in an increasingly accessible market.
In 2015 I won the Venus Award for customer service, which was a great complement to have that aspect of our business recognised, as Tim & I both have a very client focused “can do” attitude. Many of our existing clients contacted us to congratulate us and say how it was well deserved – what a complement!
How has your company changed since it was established?
I think that Tim and I have evolved during our time in business together. We work really well as a team, complementing each other’s skills, and staying focused on the goal. Over the years we have undertaken more ambitious projects and employed a great team of people to ensure we effectively manage all aspects of business from the day to day running through to the client.
How has CEDIA membership helped you over the years?
I think it is essential to have a well-recognised industry body that provide standards for work, ensuring consumer confidence. A number of our clients have chosen the company as we are members of CEDIA. I also think that CEDIA provides great training and resources for companies in the industry.
What does it take to run a successful company?
For Tim and I, the focus has been people and they remain the important ones in our business. We value the great team of people we have working in the company, the clients and other professionals; those relationships are paramount in any business. Tim and I have always been goal driven, with a clear focus of what we want to achieve, and how we will both make it happen. I am sure that for many people a husband and wife team would not be ideal, but I’m pleased to say it works for us and has done for 10 years! We both have a very different skill set so we work to maximise them and when the going gets tough sometimes, we support and encourage each other.
What does the future hold for your company?
Having watched the market evolve and grow over the last 10 years, I think that the current market is really exciting. Market awareness is greater than ever. It is essential that we embrace new technologies, be creative with integration and develop new approaches to meet the evolving needs of each client. We are really looking forward to the next decade!
If you would like to learn more about how Intelligent Abodes can help you as a trusted member of CEDIA contact Karen at Intelligent Abodes.