President, AAA Screening Service, Inc., Kansas City
About six years ago Jennifer Meents, MBA 1999, began pursuing a longtime professional goal: to be a business owner.
After completing her MBA degree from the Full-time MBA Program, Jennifer entered the corporate world at Sprint Nextel in their financial management development program. While there, she gained broad-based, real-world exposure to different areas of corporate business. Four years later, Jennifer decided to venture out on her own and she began the search for the right fit.
“I seriously considered starting a business from scratch, dabbling in real estate, or purchasing an existing business. I looked at a lot of businesses and finally found one that just clicked,” she says.
In October 2003, she purchased AAA Screening Service Inc., a firm that completes background checks for rental industry and pre-employment screening in the Kansas City area. A few years later, Jennifer acquired a local competitor. Today she continues to develop her business on a broader scale as she’s preparing for another acquisition. AAA Screening Service caters to clients primarily in Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, and beyond, and she foresees growth opportunities.
Working for yourself certainly has its benefits, but also presents great risk. “I’ve felt confident throughout this entire experience. Sure, there are moments of uneasiness, especially with today’s economy. But that’s when I rely on my education. I know if I review my marketing analysis, financial analysis, and my operations analysis, and they are solid, then I know I’m okay. My MBA has come in handy because I’ve been trained to know what to look for and how to respond to get results.”