Canadian Contractor

Contractor Talk Episode 1: The Making of a Contractor: John McLellan



One of the most successful roofing and renovations contractors in the Toronto area, John talks to Rob Koci about his successes, mistakes and business principles

John McLellan runs an absolutely first-rate contracting firm out in Claremont, ON just east of Toronto.

He’s been doing it for a while. We featured him as our cover story in  our July/August 2012 issue. Anyone who wants to be more successful – both at pleasing customers and making money (is there any difference?) – can learn something from this video.

John tells Rob Koci about his path into the residential contracting business and how he grew his firm to the large-scale operation it is today.


John McLellan didn’t have it easy. Far from it.

His family suffered an enormous tragedy when John and his brother were in their teens. Their father had a diving accident in their backyard swimming pool. It left the man a quadriplegic. What John learned about the mobility challenges his father then faced convinced him that one day he wanted to be a part of the “accessibility” construction industry. And indeed, McLellan Contracting is now one of the most experienced and well-known accessibility contracting firms in the GTA.

But it’s also a significant roofing company, straight up, and a very business residential renovating firm.

John didn’t have a straight line trip to success. He dropped out of school to go work for his future stepfather after his own father passed away. His first job for his new boss was digging ditches. But John had always had a passion for sales, and so he asked his new boss if he could possibly put down his shovel and go to sell something to someone.

John immediately sold $16,000 worth of projects in 4.5 hours.

Sales was the way forward for John, clearly. And ultimately, business ownership. That journey is described in the video.

Watch this video to pick up some tremendous tips of moving your own business forward.

This Contractor Talk video is brought to you by IKO.

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2 Comments » for Contractor Talk Episode 1: The Making of a Contractor: John McLellan
  1. Guys, it would be great if you would post the videos also as a downloadable podcast we could play and listen to while working or driving.
    Thank you for your consideration.

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