Chattanoogan Matt Jeffery’s company is setting a high ceiling for flooring

Staff photo by Matt Hamilton / Matt Jeffery at Hotel Indigo in Chattanooga.

Matt Jeffery, a 34-year-old flooring company founder, has a secret tactic for finding great employees. He looks for job applicants who have been waiters or waitresses.

If this sounds random, it's not. The construction contracting business can often be organized chaos, Jeffery says, and people who have successfully waited tables or served as a bartender in a restaurant have, perhaps unknowingly, perfected a rare skill set: rolling with the unexpected.

Jeffery's 22-employee company, Chattanooga Floor Care, grew 120 percent in 2021 and is on track for another 20 percent gain in 2022, he says. The company, which Jeffery co-founded and operates with his dad, Barry Jeffery, specializes in surfacing concrete floors, a low-maintenance finish that more home-owners and businesses are using.

Think about what's underfoot when you walk into any Walmart or Home Depot -- polished concrete.