Brian Gathright always thought he would take over his grandfather's farm, but when a college professor praised his floral design work, it sent him down a path that let his entrepreneurial spirit blossom. Brian recently shared why he loves running a business, his favorite energy saving tips and what he wants to do next.

What made you want to be a business owner?

The idea to work for myself was planted in my heart as a child, but I really had no interest in cutting or arranging flowers. I only took a flower design class to pad my college GPA. The instructor saw something special in my arrangements and told the class, “This is what a professional arrangement looks like.” I decided to go into business for myself and launched My World Class Flowers in 2000 as a floral service focused on event decorating and fresh cut flowers.

What’s your favorite part of running a business?

I love the clients I come in contact with, being creative, and the challenge of making something they’ll appreciate. Plus, working for myself gives me the freedom and flexibility to invest time and effort into my community.

What makes your business unique?

I have a 600 square foot studio but it’s not a traditional storefront flower shop concept. My clients get to tell me exactly what they want and they’ll have it ready for pickup within four hours.

How is electricity critical to your daily operation?

My plants will wilt and the soil will sour if the temperature’s higher than 80 degrees, so climate control is critical, especially for delicate products like corsages and bouquets. 

What do you look for from an electricity provider?

I love TXU Energy's friendly and personable customer service, and your business rates were the lowest offered to me of the companies I shopped. Instead of sending me a 20-page contract, the enrollment form was very simple and not financially intrusive. I didn’t have to pay a deposit, and that sold me. I’ve had TXU Energy ever since.

What’s your favorite energy- or money-saving tip?

The simple things add up. During slow periods, I turn the coolers and air conditioner to a warmer setting, keep the lights off and unplug all unnecessary electronics.

What are you doing next?

Some of my clients wanted to learn how to make arrangements for their own personal use, so I’m opening a floral design school. I’m also coordinating a step-by-step course for local schools that want to start a community garden. Anyone and everyone interested in getting involved in a gardening-based project or workshop can contact for details or more information.