Computer and cell phone repair shop celebrates fifth year in Durango with new location – The Durango Herald | CarTailz

The owner started his business with a $1,000 loan and now employs his own people

Nash McNichol, owner of Tech-Nichol Device Repair, works on a device at the company’s new location at 931 Colorado Highway 3 on Oct. 18. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)

College didn’t seem like the right path for Durango High School graduate Nash McNichol, and as his company celebrates five years in business, he has no regrets.

Tech-Nichol Device Repair, which provides cell phone and computer repair services, recently relocated from its location at 736 Main Ave to 931 Colorado Highway 3. In the process, McNichol also acquired The PC Clinic, a business formerly located in this building, and merged the two companies.

McNichol said the PC Clinic owner had been a mentor to him, and when he decided to sell the business, McNichol was interested.

“PC Clinic will no longer be PC Clinic, it will be Tech-Nichol. But we’re still going to keep all of PC Clinic’s intellectual property and all of their reviews because they did a really good job,” McNichol said.

Nash McNichol, right, owner of Tech-Nichol Device Repair, with some of his associates Willow Wu, left, Holy Poliska, center, and Dylan, the store’s greeter on Oct. 18 at the new location at 931 Colorado Highway 3. (Jerry McBride/ Durango Herald)

The two companies have worked together in the past. Because PC Clinic only repaired computers, the company often referred phone repairs to Tech-Nichol.

He said since acquiring the new location, Tech-Nichol has received more computer repair requests. He attributes this to PC Clinic’s commitment to quality computer repair services.

McNichol, 25, started repairing phones in high school. He later attended Fort Lewis College three times, but chose to drop out each time. During his third term in college, he began to think he could start an engineering repair business. He was earning a degree in business at the time and was also doing impressive grades, but knew his calling lay elsewhere.

“One of my professors actually told me that he wanted me to drop out of college and go on with this,” he said.

Nash McNichol, owner of Tech-Nichol Device Repair, works on a device at the company’s new location at 931 Colorado Highway 3 on Oct. 18. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)

McNichol received a $1,000 loan from his mother on condition that he pay it back within a year.

When the deal started in September 2017, he was able to pay it back in two months.

Fast forward five years and McNichol is hiring his own people.

As an employer, he is looking for people with the right personality and dedication to learn technical repairs. It’s not always about experience, he said; often it is about the ability to solve problems.

“The ability to be charming, to have patience and to have a good personality — those are things you’re born with,” he said. “And rather than looking for people who are really qualified, I look more for people who have the personality to complement the business.”

He recognizes that some employees need to learn new skills, but he tries not to put them in a position where they are likely to fail.

“He’s very good at giving people opportunities,” said Holly Poliska, receptionist at Tech-Nichol. “Some places you go and if you don’t have any experience, they just say, ‘Okay, bye.’ But he (McNichol) will train you and build your experience. He’s great at that.”

Newly hired technician Willow Wu has always been interested in engineering, but previously worked in car sales. He said his passion for computer games drove him to make the switch.

For Wu, the difference between the two fields lies in perception.

“The car sale is almost like a perception of the object and not the actual object itself,” Wu said. “Technology is about the object itself, not the perception.”

His first few days at the company were hectic but fun. He said he makes an average of eight repairs a day. The shop itself carries out an average of 12 to 20 repairs per day. Wu said projects often take about 20 to 30 minutes, depending on the type of repair.

Nash McNichol, owner of Tech-Nichol Device Repair, at a new location at 931 Colorado Highway 3. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)

McNichol said he wants to expand in the Four Corners and is considering starting a podcast about working in the technology industry.

He compares the concept to the well-known radio show “Car Talk” on National Public Radio. He said there’s a fun human element when people work with technology.

McNichol couldn’t be happier with the direction his company is taking and is grateful for the experience. Although he never thought the business would grow so quickly, he knew something would come of it.

“All the people I’ve met in my life right now are the result of that endeavor,” he said, “and I would never take that back.”

tbrown@durangoherald.com

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