TRURO – He’s been in business for more than a dozen years, but Keith Gillis said the last five months have been like starting from scratch.
Gillis owns and operates G&G Computer Services out of Arlington Place and a former employee, Anna Mae Ellis, is up on charges of defrauding approximately $455,000 from the business. None of the allegations have been proven in court, and Ellis is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday.
“I’m an upbeat, happy-go-lucky guy, but I’ve had a hard time putting a smile on my face to deal with customers,” said Gillis. “Things have been mentally hard for me. I come in every day, trying to keep the money flowing and to fix the mistakes, but you just keep running into roadblocks and more problems.”
Gillis said he’d been working day and night for the past two years, but didn’t seem any further ahead.
“I was basically working 16-hour days, six, sometimes seven, days a week. It was harder work but I was no further ahead. I blamed it on the economy change and shift in computers, but it wasn’t making sense.”
Gillis hired Doreen Dean close to the New Year to look after accounts receivable after realizing there was “no cash flow” within the business.
“It’s very disheartening,” said Gillis, adding he’s had to pay someone to re-do his books. “A lot of people have been questioning and are frustrated, but you can’t really tell the customer what’s going on … you can’t tell them behind the scenes.”
The owner is staying open to service his customers, and thanking them for their understanding and patience.
To other business owners, he’s hoping none find themselves in the position of starting over.
“You need to have processes and checks in place, and if you don’t know what you should have, you need to talk to a chartered accountant to find out. As an entrepreneur, you start up your business because you’re good at something. Usually the books are the weak part. If I was good at books, I wouldn’t have opened a computer store.
“In business, in order to build your business, you need to make sure you’re working on your business,” he said.