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Taking Your Home-Based Business from Great Idea to Grand Opening!TM with Building Professional Mike Marden

PHOENIX, AZ / ACCESSWIRE / March 16, 2021 / New home-based businesses and startups have always been important drivers in our economy and are now more than ever popping up across the country at an ever increasing pace. Through shutdowns and layoffs, the COVID-19 crisis inspired thousands of unemployed or bored Americans to leap into entrepreneurship. For many business owners, the goal is to eventually open a brick-and-mortar location. Whether you want to own a bakery, an auto repair shop, a retail store, etc., the transition to a commercial space can be a bit intimidating.

More than likely, you are an expert at your business, but not an expert at real estate, architecture, contracting, or blueprints. What small business owners need is guidance throughout the entire process of turning their side-hustle into a storefront. That is where Great Idea to Grand Opening TM comes in, with its mission to help entrepreneurs transition their business to a physical location by following the mantra… Plan + Design + Build!

Arizona native, Mike Marden followed his blue-collar roots. After being the first in his family to obtain a college degree, he paid his dues working on all sides of the building industry: development, construction, and architecture. While gathering technical skills in architectural offices designing for several business sectors, he yearned to return to the field. So, he left the career he had studied for to go back to his roots. He took a chance spending time amongst the trades, hoping it would pay off in the long run. As it turns out, building shopping centers and manufacturing facilities would give him the hands-on knowledge to raise the level of his Architectural game. This eventually led to him establishing his own firm. Then in 2015, after years of failures and growing pains with his own business, Mike finally found a way to combine his passion for architecture and construction. Clients became interested in the secrets he had learned over the years for how to successfully plan and open their locations. A niche was found, and an idea was born. Beyond just providing permit drawings and subcontractor recommendations, Mike decided to formalize his consultation process, by identifying a need in the marketplace and filling it. He now spends his days providing a comprehensive service helping small business owners with Great Idea to Grand OpeningTM.

Great Idea to Grand OpeningTMis making a splash in the Arizona commercial real estate and building industry by providing a unique service for business owners with no prior experience. "Providing a service that doesn't exist for a person that's never done this before is what we get excited about. We give them what we have seen that they need," says Mike. Each business that his team works with is unique, each with a different product or service, needs, vision, and budget. For this reason, each client is taken through an in-depth three-step process:

1. Step 1- Plan: This first step is crucial. It helps the business owner get a clear understanding of what the entire endeavor will entail. In a DIY course format, Great Idea to Grand OpeningTM guides each client through a specific list of topics. They will get confirmed space requirements (by activity testing), a realistic overall project budget (through an exercise), and an accurate timeline (based on current industry and jurisdictional reporting). This service also includes the framework for site evaluation and selection. Mike will guide the business owner through picking the best location for their business by doing a site survey of possible properties. This intensive service includes visiting or understanding their current business operations, sharing what the required licensing and permits will involve, clauses and strategies to be negotiated with the landlord, existing building code compliance, and required upgrades to meet ordinances specific to their proposed use. It is recommended that a person begin this step 12 to 24 months prior to signing a commercial lease. After completing the Great Idea to Grand OpeningTM program, Clients have compiled the information necessary to hire the Architect and begin the design process. To learn more visit

2. Step 2- Design: This is the fun part! The design stage is all about seeing the space (for their place of business) come to life. The most unique part of this step is the Snapshot Schedule that is utilized, so both the Client and the Architect know what to expect throughout the entire "plans and permit" process. Each client will receive a customized, color-coded moving schedule so they can follow along and participate in each step of the process. This portion of the process is offered by WDS Architecture PLLC, a firm that holds national registrations by Mike. To learn more visit

3. Step 3- Build: This is the part every Client dreams about. This Construction Phase is when the transformation of the space happens before their eyes. "We have to acknowledge that this is the commercial world, so unlike residential projects, the Clients cannot literally hire trades and build themselves. That said, we want to make this as close to DIY as possible for the client, allowing them to be completely involved in the build step. Taking down the curtain between Contractor and Client is what makes our process so unique and allows the Business Owner to have more control in their success." A license for construction has been assigned to WDS Commercial LLC AZROC 331144 to facilitate these buildouts, for which Mike is a qualifying party. To learn more visit

Some examples of Great Idea to Grand OpeningTM'ssuccessful clients include:

  • Strong Foundations Academy in Chandler, Arizona. This preschool was started by two former elementary school teachers with a desire to prepare young children better for primary school. After sharing conversations in the lunchroom, they soon got serious and decided to take the leap into business ownership. They have built their unique business model from the ground up, creating a 4,800 sq. ft. buildout and eventually hiring multiple teachers to implement a curriculum that teaches children the academic skills necessary to be successful in school along with the emotional skills necessary to succeed in life. After their first year under roof, these Co-Owners are already discussing their next location with Mike.

  • The Cookie House in Glendale, Arizona. This gourmet cookie bakery was founded by a woman who grew to dislike her job in the corporate world, but loved baking cookies out of her home. After encouragement from friends and family, she got up the courage to take her twenty-year home-kitchen hobby and turn it into a 2,000 sq. ft. commercial bakery. Great Idea to Grand OpeningTMhelped take her through the entire transformation, including reworking her budget, timeline, and contractor selections to set her up for better success. She realized how misinformed she had been prior to hiring Mike's Team and believes she gained valuable guidance through the entire process, even helping her rethink cooking equipment selections to fit her budget.

  • Studance Lab in Goodyear, Arizona. This incredibly successful 5,000sf dance studio is for kids of all ages up to adulthood. Great Idea to Grand OpeningTM has helped them with multiple expansions as their business has continued to grow. With an impressive following in the community and a backlog of students awaiting a spot for lessons, the steps for success revealed that expansion could be done delaying a costly initial full buildout and instead adding additional dance rooms as revenues were collected and funds became available. The Lab has now undergone three successful buildout projects.

Mike Marden has put decades of experience and knowledge into a system for success for small business owners. "The client's success starts with them". At Great Idea to Grand OpeningTM, the Architect-Contractor, and his Team act as a guide through the business owner's entire journey. The sooner they can start planning the better. "The earlier we can start working together, the less stressful and more successful the project will be. Getting the physical doors to someone's dream open for business, should not be rushed or like a pressure cooker. It should be fun!" If you're ready to take your business to the next level, you can contact Mike and his team at

Contact Name: Mike Marden
Business Name: Great Idea to Grand OpeningTM
Phone Number: 602-319-5282
Website Link:


SOURCE: Mike Marden

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