Ottawa, Canada

Not “Fencing: The Sport”; not “Fencing: The Act of Moving Stolen Goods”; but “Fencing: Selling and Installing Beautiful Outdoor Fences.” That’s Francis Côté’s specialty.

Francis Côté is the Sales Manager of Ideal Fence. Ideal Fence is an Ottawa-based fencing company that provides Ottawa and its surrounding areas with fences of all kinds – wooden, vinyl, metal, and the list goes on. They pride themselves in their customer service and accomodation, supporting customers through the entire fencing process from sale, to installation, to restoration.

Francis is proud of the company culture within Ideal Fence, creating a welcoming environment for employees who struggle with substance abuse and seek help. In the future, they hope to extend that same mentality to the community and further champion that cause.

Francis Côté, thank you for everything that you do. Your attention to detail and care for your customers shine and is what makes your organization stand out from the rest. 

How did you get started in maintenance?

I got into this industry purely by accident. I’m originally born and raised in Ottawa. I left my undemanding government job at the age of 22 and decided to travel the world. Over the course of eight years, I visited Western Canada, Europe, South East Asia, the Hawaiian Islands and more. I returned to finish my post-secondary studies in integrated marketing communications. After working a summer job installing fences while in college, I was hired to sell residential fences in 2006 — I loved it! I’ve been in the industry ever since.

After a first successful season, fence sales and installations turned out to be something I really enjoyed because I could work my own schedule. My roles within the fencing industry have changed significantly over the years. I started as a commission seasonal sales representative, worked my way up to operations manager, and then to a sole proprietorship.

After managing sales divisions for larger firms, I was hired by the owner of Ideal Fence to develop their sales division in 2017. I like to think we’ve been very successful!

francis cote, upkeep

What is one of your proudest achievements?

I am most proud of what I’m now involved with at Ideal Fence! The company had less than $100,000 in contract sales in 2016. Since then, we’ve grown it to over $2.5 million. We’re also continuously building a solid reputation in our field.

What is one thing you wish people knew about your job?

If there’s one thing I wish people knew about my job is that people who choose sales as a profession cannot afford to be dishonest. If they are, they won’t last!

Thank you, Francis!