Ian Fleury is a North Country native who works hard and radiates positivity. “It’s beautiful,” said Fleury, referencing his love for Plattsburgh and the Adirondack Coast. “We are very close to wonderful pins on the map, like Burlington and Montreal.”
Growing up, Fleury enjoyed the opportunity to get outside and enjoy time with friends. Whether it involved a game of basketball, volleyball or running, he was always ready to play. He also enjoyed darts, pool and poker. “My group of friends was extremely fun,” he said. “Each day provided something unique.”
Today, as the store manager and an employee owner of the Kinney Drug store on Route 3 in Plattsburgh, Ian lives each day in the moment. When asked how he found himself on his current career trajectory, he explained his growth has come organically. “Each experience, event and, most importantly, the people I have met along the way are what continue to shape my life.”
Taking each day in stride and giving it his best is important to Ian. “I credit myself as a proactive, forward-thinking individual… a person living with purpose.”
Ian recognizes the positive impact of the people he has surrounded himself with. “Good people, good life,” he said. “Things keep happening that make sense. I am lucky and happy and I know it. Genuinely. Truly.”
What are you doing to make a difference in your profession?
Having FUN while working in a retail setting. There are a tremendous number of entry level positions in retail, and I think that we need strong leaders with the right attitude. We need to ensure that all of these people who start in retail can develop strong character traits either for advancement in the company where they are currently employed, or use those traits in a profession they are pursuing after retail.
What’s the single most important characteristic for success?
Be genuine. Recognize good people.
What is your biggest professional success?
Building lifelong friendships through work.
What is your dream job?
If all I know is this (what I am currently doing) and I am happy doing this, then how can I say anything else would be my dream? The grass is not always greener, so be happy where you are. With that said… maybe the caretaker of a private island. Or maybe a stuntman. Or maybe a taste tester for a beef jerky company.
What important lesson have you learned in your career?
That people are the key to success. Obviously, that means building and maintaining relationships with our customers but also our vendors and internal relationships as well. This also goes for hiring practices. Hiring the right person, not a skill set. We can train for that. If they are a good person, then we can get the rest to fall in place.
What is the most exciting trend happening in the community right now?
Downtown revitalization. I know this can be a touchy subject for some. As an optimist, I believe it will have a wonderful impact on our community.
How do you contribute to the culture of your company?
Kinney’s is an employee-owned company. Although it isn’t directly my business, it is in a way. Caring for this business, like it is my own, makes it my own. The better we do, the better everyone does, the better I do. Making sure we maintain that culture is very important to our success. Oh, and having fun. Lots of fun. Have I mentioned that yet?
What’s the biggest risk you’ve ever taken?
Dropping out of college and pursuing my career in retail. In a world where there is so much pressure to obtain higher education, I went against the grain. I thought that hard work, regardless of what field, or how I got there, would pay off. It has. We all need to be comfortable making the best decisions for us, regardless of the pressure we feel from peers and society.
Write a note to your younger self…
Ian! Keep doing what you are doing. You have received love, patience, and opportunity. Push hard every day to be a better father, better husband, better friend, better professional, and better man. Keep grinding and have fun doing it!