H&H Home and Hardware: From Commercial Business to Marion Staple

H&H Home and Hardware: From Commercial Business to Marion Staple

Founded in 2000 in Marion, KY, H&H Home and Hardware originated as a business serving contractors and industrial commercial crews but in the last 3 years has developed into a staple hardware store supporting local artisans and the Marion, Kentucky community.

Originally started by her parents and another couple, current co-Owner Shanna West's earliest memory of the business is her father sitting at their kitchen table and calling everyone he knew to let them know that he was going into business. When Shanna was young the work that her father did wasn't very interesting to her, and it wasn't until a transitional period later in her life that drove her to have increased interest in being part of the business. When Shanna started her career, she worked at a company where she would provide training to employees and would often be asked if she would work for the family business, and at the time she had no interest in being part of it.

After the transitional period of her life, her priorities changed, and one of the co-owners of the business, Phillis, reached out to her to ask if she wanted to help with the family business and help manage the books. She then decided that helping with the family business is exactly what she needed at that time. Despite being introduced to managing the books, Shanna quickly began to do the work that her father did, as she had a knack for working with customers, processing orders, and problem-solving for projects. Funnily enough, Shanna never learned how to manage the books as the other role was more interesting to her.

While working for the business, Shanna met a man who she would later call her husband, and a couple years later when Phyllis wanted to retire, Shanna and her husband decided they wanted to buy into her share of the business and become co-owners with her parents. At this time, the business was still only working with commercial businesses and contractors, and Shanna and her husband determined that in order to keep up with competitors in the industry and the ever-changing digital world, they needed to revamp the business. That was when three years ago they moved the location of the business across town to a location five times the size in order to become a fully stocked hardware store for the Marion, KY community. Not only did they feel this was necessary to keep up with competitors, but they realized this is what needed to be done if they wanted to continue to allow H&H Home and Hardware to become a generational business. Her parents still work for the company despite her mother not originally working with her husband, but the business is very family oriented as Shanna's two daughters also help with work that needs to be done, with her 15-year-old helping with stock and running the cash register, and her 10-year-old providing creative ideas for the business.

When asked what it's like to work with her family, “I get to be with my family all day every day... we’re such a close family and we're all in all the time, we’ve always been that way... it's inspiring all the time".

Since developing H&H Home and Hardware into the local hardware store it is now in the last 3 years, buying local and supporting local businesses has been incredibly important to Shanna and her whole family. In the last few years, Shanna got involved in the leadership breakfast for local businesses and encourages all the local businesses in Marion, KY to show up for each other and offer support. She believes this is so important because each one of these business owners understands what it's like to run a local business and how tough it can sometimes be.

When developing into a local hardware store, Shanna saw an opportunity to support local artisans. This started with one of her father's friends who collects his own local honey, which they packaged up and began selling in the store. Marion also has a large Amish community that provides products to the store, one of the most popular being a peanut brittle by one of the members of the Amish community. By working with local artisans, this is an advantage to the business since there's a lot of relationship building involved, people love going to local stores to find the next "cool thing", and by carrying these products, H&H Home and Hardware is able to provide exactly what customers are looking for.

When asked about why she believes the shop local movement is so important, "I feel like I’ve been blessed with an energy about shopping local, it comes for a love for my community, I was born here, I was raised here, I went to high school here, it's where my family is, I want people to want to shop local, I want my kids to want to come back here after college".

Shanna was recently voted into her local Chamber of Commerce and plans to continue working together with local businesses and to continue the "buy local" push.


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