3 Questions with Allan & Krista Arias

Allan and Krista Arias, Compass Roofing, LLC

Allan and Krista Arias, Compass Roofing, LLC

Explain to us why you chose the name “Compass”?

Allan: Before we became a high-tech society and started using GPS, the compass was a very important tool. It has helped us in the roofing business when we needed to determine exposure and wind direction. In life and business, heading in the right direction is very important which is why our tagline is “The Right Direction for You”. We want to help our clients look at all directions and choose the right one for them.

Playing off that theme, what direction would you give to other minority- and women-owned business owners who are considering a bid on the project?

Krista: There is no doubt that a project of this size, with so many big-name players, can intimidate a small business owner. I’m more so the budget person here, so I’d tell them to do their homework, so they can be confident they are prepared for the growth that a project like this can bring. That’s their “north” where they need to be secure. They need a firm handle on costs and to have established good relationships with suppliers and a track-record of on-time projects - all the things you need for any job.

Allan: As a board member of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, I mentor small business owners - even the competitors. It’s very important to me because their success helps our industry and the community as a whole. Right now, Kansas City is really growing which makes it a great time for business owners, as long as they can navigate along the way. Edgemoor is really making a tremendous effort on this project to create opportunities for minority- and women-owned businesses to grow. After all, every big company involved in the construction of the New Terminal started out small.

Do you believe your work on The New Terminal will benefit your company?

I have no doubt that our business will benefit tremendously, as a matter of fact it’s already started. The Compass team learned a great deal about work site safety from the CWC team. We were already following OSHA guidelines, but now we’ve also implemented the safety standards and practices that CWC employs which go above and beyond what OSHA requires. We are a growing business with 14 employees whom we consider family. What we’ve learned from CWC will help keep them safe and that’s literally priceless.

In addition, of course, there is the visibility that goes along with being involved in such a high-profile project. As we go after new business, we definitely highlight our work on this project. Go to our website and you’ll see. We are proud of contributing to a project that will have such a deep and wide-ranging impact on Kansas City, now and for years to come. As with any large project there have been some challenges along the way, but everyone on the team comes together to work through it.