CRESSKILL, N.J. — What started as a project in his basement has become a successful company for one Cresskill dad.
Matt Rosen recently launched Elgen Staffing, a job placement company, which now operates out of a Closter warehouse within his partner's manufacturing company.
He picked up the fundamentals of running a business while working at a family friend's laundromat in New York City, and paired that with his parents' work ethics.
In less than six months, Rosen's company is at a total of nine employees and has helped put dozens of people to work, from New Jersey to Oregon.
"We've heard stories from people in need and how they're so desperate to work," said Rosen, who runs Elgen with one of his friends.
"At the end of the day we're helping a lot of people put food on the table — and that's very rewarding."
Rosen, a Fairleigh Dickinson University alum, worked in various sales roles before learning the recruiting industry at Yahoo!, Hotjobs and Monster.
"Working at a big company, there are days where you feel under appreciated and underpaid," Rosen said from his desk at Elgen's headquarters on Railroad Avenue.
"It's a grind — day in and day out.
"I always knew I'd get here one day and do this. It was just a matter of when I was going to man up."
Fear is Rosen's greatest motivator, he said.
Fear of failure and fear of complacency.
The latter was the one to push him out of corporate jobs and into a start-up of his own.
"People want to work," he said. "The job market is hot and there is a lot of opportunity out there... from entry level to all the way up to the C suite."
Rosen cited the company's new, relationship-based approach to an old industry as the root of its success.
But, he says, nothing can beat hard work.
"Seeing my mom work so hard at such a young age led me to believe that's what you need to do to be successful," said Rosen, a Fort Lee High School graduate.
It seems like he's leaving his legacy in more place than one.
"You work hard to get what you want,'" Rosen said. "It's something I instill in my children daily."