Jason Schappert, founder of MzeroA.com, which is a GrowFL 2017 Florida Companies to Watch honoree, took the early customer service lessons he learned working for his father's company and used them to help grow his own flight training business.
"I took my first flight lesson at 12. I soloed on my 16th birthday before I had my driver license and I became a flight instructor at 18," he said. "I had this dream I was going to go be an airline pilot until I met some and realized they were never home and many were divorced. I thought about being a corporate pilot, until I met some and saw they were always on call. I rely enjoyed instruction but needed to find a way to make it work beyond trading my time for money in one-on-one lessons in the air. Ultimately, we took our school online and my wife helped me do that."
MzeroA.com is an online flight training community that provides resources, mentorship, and guidance for both hobbyists and career-minded learners.
"We provide the instruction, test prep and curriculum you need to succeed," Schappert explained. "We are not a traditional flight school that you can do physical flying with. We only offer FAA test prep and partner with thousands of flight schools to complete the training."
Schappert says being honored by GrowFL as a Florida Company To Watch is gratifying on several fronts.
"It is a huge accomplishment for us, for our team and for future employees to see how we've set the bar and look to repeat and earn awards," he said. "We put in a lot of late hours and work that some may feel goes unnoticed but recognition like this along the way keeps us moving forward."
Schappert's advice for aspiring entrepreneurs harks back to the customer service lessons he learned working for his father as a teen.
"The greatest thing we do is we love on every customer just like back in the leans days when we had one or two customers even though now we have thousands of customers," he said. "You have to provide that same amount of love and care, maybe it doesn't come from you, but from your team that you instilled the vision in."