Ladyboss Feature: Nancy Kelly

Short-term labor isn’t often glamorous work, but Labor Masters president Nancy Kelly provides a welcoming environment both employees and employers can feel proud of.

What services does Labor Masters provide?

Labor Masters provides daily staffing needs to a wide variety of employers. We do all the non-glamorous jobs: construction, shoveling, moving, painting, cleaning, etc. If you’ve got a job that you really don’t want to do, call us.

We open at 5 a.m., and each day we release 100-150 people to jobs. They go out to their work site, and come back at the end of the day to turn in their time card and get their check.

Who might need a temporary job?

We’ve got people in-between jobs, and some people that just don’t know what they want to do. I’ve got college professors that work a day here and there and school teachers that work with us in the summers. Some people come to us with a felony on their record. That doesn’t matter. What matters is if you do good work that day.

We provide a really pretty lobby and a nice atmosphere and hope that it helps people feel good, even if they don’t find a job with us that day. At least they have a nice place to be, where they’re respected (and we have coffee and cookies!).

What’s your favorite part about what you do?

When I help someone; when they come in and have zero money in their pocket and can go home at the end of the day with $100. They are so appreciative that they had a job that day, and feel good about going home with the money they earned.

Helping people and making sure that they know they’re appreciated is what keeps me going.

What do you wish people knew about your business?

That’s twofold, because we have two distinct customers. We have clients… businesses or homeowners who use us, and those that use us for work.

  1. I want people to know there’s a company in Fargo where you can get daily labor that’s guaranteed. We guarantee our work. If you let me know in the first two hours that you’re unsatisfied with the work being done, you don’t get charged. Sometimes people just can’t handle the job, and they get replaced. It’s not a long-term commitment, it’s daily. It’s a very easy service to use.
  2. I want everyone to know that they can work for us for just a day at a time. It’s not slummy. It’s a nice place to be, work, make good money and there’s no commitment.

How has the workforce shortage in North Dakota affected your business?

When companies are shorthanded, they’re more flexible and willing to use a daily service rather than a staffing company. But even though there are more openings for daily labor, we still have to be sure that we have the people to staff them before we sell those services to our clients.

What skills are you finding missing from the job market?

Anybody that wants to get their hands dirty. Any blue collar, construction, technical training, and  people with commercial drivers licenses or who can drive a forklift.

What is the best career advice you’ve ever received or you have to offer?

My parents taught me to rely on myself. When I was about 10 years old, my dad told me, “There’s no prince on a white horse. Make your own goddamn money.”

What are you most proud of?

What makes me proud is having a business that helps people on a daily basis, and supports four people and their families plus 1,500 temporary employees. I can’t imagine doing anything else.