We asked locals to nominate Montgomery County’s most influential people – men and women who are shaping the community, influencing their industries, and making a difference. Dozens of amazing stories were submitted about passionate and committed locals. At Montco Happening, we salute all those who wake up every morning with the intention of leaving the world just a little bit better.

10 outstanding individuals have been named the Top 10 Movers & Shakers of the year, and we have the honor of sharing their stories on Montco Happening. Meet Fort Washington’s  Lori Fischer, a real estate stylist and the owner of Rethink Home Interiors.

Montco Happening: Where did you attend school?

Lori: For my undergrad, Penn State; Graduate- George Washington University

Montco Happening: What motivates you every morning?

Lori: I get to spend my days doing something that I dreamed about for a very long time before finding the courage to just do it. I am motivated by my gratitude.

Montco Happening: What would you say is your idea of a perfect day?

Lori: Coffee and the New York Times Puzzle over breakfast, doing anything with my family, especially a trip to someplace inspiring like the Barnes, taking in a gorgeous European location or a spending the day on the Maine coastline.

Montco Happening: Who inspires you?

Lori: There are so many amazing interior designers that inspire me, but I would have to say my Mom. She’s a dynamic, fun woman who is always thinking of others before she thinks of herself. The joy that she gets from being with her family is contagious and the best gift that a daughter could receive.

Montco Happening: How did you decide to go into your business/profession/service?

Lori: As a child, one of my chores every Saturday morning was dusting. I loved dusting!! I loved it because I could take everything off of my parent’s furniture and rearrange it any way that I wanted to. My mother was so generous in letting me take creative license all over the house ; ) So after years of being in Pharmaceutical Sales, I was ready for a change and I thought, “How can I best merge my love of design and my marketing background?” HGTV shows about Home Staging captured my attention and imagination. That was it for me. I decided to become a Home Stager but quickly realized that what I was doing went beyond the previous definition of Home Staging. I was actually a Real Estate Stylist. So, that is what my company does–Real Estate Styling.

Montco Happening: Which achievement are you most proud of?

Lori: I am so proud of how many sellers we have helped get sold quickly. Every sale is a story. A step toward a bigger home for an expanding family, a move toward retirement, the finalization of a divorce, part of the grieving process of letting go. Helping people move on to whatever is next for them is what I am most proud of.

Montco Happening: What has been the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome?

Lori: My own self-doubt has been the biggest challenge. I am an absolute perfectionist when it comes to my work and in the beginning, I agonized over every little thing. Would painting really make a difference? Should I have mentioned replacing that light fixture? Over time, with a lot of studying and gaining more experience, that has gone away almost completely. Thank goodness!

Montco Happening: What is the biggest accomplishment that you’d like to achieve over the next 5 years?

Lori: I’d love to grow the number of stylist that we have working at Rethink. Real estate requires a SWAT team at times because the needs are most often urgent. I would love to be a nimble team of fabulous stylists at the ready to serve our Realtors and their sellers

Montco Happening: How do you think your friends & coworkers would describe you?

Lori: My hope is that they describe me as positive, fun and kind. I have worked for some phenomenal managers over the years and I model much of what I learned from those incredible people. What we do isn’t pure science so there is a lot of room for interpretation. It is important to me that our team feels that they have a safe environment to express their thoughts and give their input. It is also important to me that our sellers feel that we are on their side. We have developed a lot of language to communicate changes that need to be made in a home that is respectful and positive so that our sellers feel good about working with us and implementing the changes that we recommend.

Montco Happening: Where’s your favorite place to go in Montgomery County?

Lori: I love the neighborhoods of the Main Line. I find them so inspiring both in geography and architecture.

Montco Happening: You can take a time machine back to visit yourself 10 years ago. What advice would you give?

Lori: I would tell myself not to be afraid to start over or to fail. I think that I delayed making the move to do what I love because I thought that my family and friends would think that I was not a serious person pursuing a serious career. More and more these days, I have been confronted with how limited our time on earth really is. You cannot waste it being someone that you are not.

Montco Happening: Same question 10 years in the future.

Lori: I would remind myself to find balance between my life and my work. And, to really think about how I want to be remembered by my family, friends and colleagues so that I live in alignment with who I am and who I want to be.

You can read about more outstanding individuals from across the region in Hunterdon CountyNorthern DelawareBucks County, & Philadelphia.

BKZ Logo_fullYour 2016 Montgomery County Movers & Shakers is sponsored by BKZ Consulting Partners, LLC, a veteran-owned credit card processing provider based in North Wales. BKZ manages and maintains relationships with the best processing and merchant services companies in the United States and delivers that expertise to local businesses. First-hand experience of the strengths and weaknesses of each company assures the right group of providers are working to meet your company’s specific needs. It also fosters long term effective solutions by creating a competitive environment in which each provider focuses on their core competency. Here’s how it works:

  • Develop: BKZ connects the best processing service to a variety of leading applications, such as:
Mobile swipe QuickBooks integration Level 3 Data
EMV technology Electronic check Fraud prevention programs and audits
Invoicing Payer Authentication E-Commerce
  • Implement: As the solution is introduced and installed, BKZ provides full-service project management. Milestone events, coordination with supporting services and assistance with closing of legacy service is taken care of during this phase. The goal is a seamless transition that is methodical and experienced.
  • Train: All involved employees are trained in the daily use, reporting and maintenance of the solution. Quick reference guides, support numbers and common issues are covered. Actions taken during power outages or connectivity problems are covered to ensure customer transactions are completed and valid.
  • Support: BKZ Consulting Partners continues to assist and provide support long after the solution is installed and operating. Quarterly reviews, technology briefings and ongoing guidance is a hallmark of our service.

BKZ founder Bob Zimmerman, a veteran of the USAF and Pennsylvania Air National Guard, worked in avionics on A-10’s. Years of attention to detail in a process oriented operation has translated nicely to the BKZ’s delivery of customer satisfaction.

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