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Associate Spotlight August 2010 - Joel Brizzi

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Associate Spotlight August 2010
It was 7 p.m. Eastern Time when Joel Brizzi answered his phone. A little late, it seemed, to be in the office, but Brizzi was finishing up the paperwork on a new Viridian customer account that one of his Associates had brought him. This particular account included 500 individual meters.
An impressive number, especially when Brizzi himself joined Viridian in March.

Brizzi is used to late nights. Besides attending to matters in his water business – he has been selling spring water, filtration systems and customer refilling stations for 21 years – he also sits on the East Rutherford, N.J., City Council as a police commissioner, a post he’s held for 15 years in his “spare time.”

While it may seem daunting, Brizzi said his multiple hats help keep him close to Jamie, his wife of 20 years.

“She’s my partner in the water business and in Viridian,” Brizzi said.

They have two children: 19­year­old Raquel, who is attending Penn State, and Joel Taylor, or J.T., who is 17.

The decision to join Viridian was a “no­brainer,” Brizzi said. While attending a presentation on the energy company, Brizzi was quickly impressed with what he heard.

“I signed up on the spot,” he said.

Brizzi has long believed in environmentally conscious products, but he said the service that Viridian provides adds an element that many are unable to offer.

“When you have a green product that’s cheaper, it’s almost never heard of,” Brizzi said.

Now that he’s an Associate, Brizzi said he’s going “90 miles per hour,” looking for individuals to get involved in the company.

“I probably average four or five new Associates a day,” Brizzi said. “You have to come out of the starting blocks and go.”

The biggest concern he sees when talking with potential customers is skepticism. He said many people have spent so many years on public utilities that deregulation sounds impossible. With a little homework, he said an Associate can pass right over that hurdle.

“You have to educate people,” Brizzi said. “You have to get trained on how to explain the product and how to build your business.”

When recruiting new Associates, Brizzi said he focuses first on the product instead of the organizational levels of Viridian.

“I am selling green energy,” Brizzi said. “It’s cheaper than the utility and there’s no contract.”

In the end, however, Brizzi said it’s not about selling a product, but about helping people realize the money they can save and the difference it can make in the environment.

“With the way the economy is going, I don’t want to ask people to buy anything,” Brizzi said, “and we don’t.”

When Brizzi was asked about his WHY for joining Viridian, he immediately spoke of his family.

“I have a child in college,” Brizzi said. “I would like to pay for her education. People say it’s all about the money; it’s not the money, it’s what the money buys.”

Brizzi said his biggest motivator is the man who comes to his house every day in a blue striped uniform and puts bills into his mailbox.

While Brizzi is seeing some amazing growth in his business, he admits that the life of a Viridian Associate is not for everyone.

“You have to stay with it,” Brizzi said. “Most people don’t want to do what it takes to get to this level. They want what’s at the end of the rainbow without doing what it takes to get there.”

Still, the path is there, Brizzi said, for anyone to begin finding customers and see the growth that they want.

“I think we have great leadership,” Brizzi said of Viridian, “and we have strategic growth.” And, of course, one great product.