Voyo Popovic
Voyo Popovic (left) alongside his employees. @PieceOfCakeMoving via Intsagram

At just 24 years old, Voyo Popovic became Piece of Cake Moving & Storage's founder and CEO, recognised as New York's fastest-growing and highest-rated moving company. His journey from humble beginnings to entrepreneurial success is a testament to his determination, hard work, and innovative mindset.

When he was 20 years old, Popovic left Montenegro for the US, where he took a job at McDonald's to make ends meet. Despite the limited options available to him, as he was still improving his English and had "no specific skill set" at the time, Popovic was determined to find a better opportunity.

A friend mentioned that moving companies always needed extra help, leading Popovic to start working as a mover in New York City.

"I fell in love with the job right away," he said in an interview with Entrepreneur. "It was just so active, and from the perspective of a mover, you could see all these different lifestyles in New York City, which for someone coming from abroad, and I think for anyone really, is fascinating."

Climbing the Ranks

After a year of working as a mover, Popovic was promoted to driver and crew leader. Although he enjoyed his new role, he sought another challenge and felt he had grown "too comfortable." He then moved into the company's sales arm, where he read books, watched YouTube tutorials, and practised speaking English to develop his skills further.

"I loved that I was able to really push myself," Popovic explained. "There was no limit. There were no specific hours. It wasn't like an eight-hour shift and you're done. Pretty much it was like you work as long as you need, and you're responsible for results."

Founding Piece of Cake

Piece of Cake
Piece of Cake is listed as New York's fastest-growing and highest-rated moving company. @PieceOfCakeMoving via Instagram

Despite his progress, Popovic grew restless again and decided to set a new objective. With years of experience in the sector, he had become familiar with some of the moving industry's shortcomings. "The industry was very outdated, from communication to emails, customer service experience, operations — everything," Popovic explained. "There was so much room for improvement. I saw my chance there."

In 2018, at 24, Popovic invested $20,000 in a single moving truck and set out to create a brand that would differentiate itself from other moving companies. Starting with the company's name and branding, Popovic created "Piece of Cake", characterised by vibrant pink and purple colours. According to Popovic, the company name "was unlike anything else in the market at the time," the vivid colours ensured the trucks stood out "in a line of a hundred trucks."

Commitment to Customer Service

Popovic was dedicated to providing exceptional customer service, understanding that satisfied customers were the primary source of word-of-mouth recommendations and new business. "So every touch point is thoughtfully done," Popovic added, "from the first time a client calls to the email correspondence, to the moving day, to the actual follow-up after the move, having every single customer happy has always been at the core of our business."

Piece of Cake also uses data, such as client reviews, to enhance business processes and support decision-making. For instance, the company offers additional training for staff members if customers report more damaged TVs than usual. The moving business also closely monitors which regions receive the highest traffic and studies the reasons behind differences in statistics to make the necessary adjustments.

Overcoming Challenges

Despite the company's booming success, Popovic noted that recruiting enough staff to sustain Piece of Cake's expansion and accelerating their growth within the firm presented obstacles. He also had concerns about his capabilities as a CEO, considering that most business leaders work their way into senior roles from the ground up.

"How do we speed up the process?" Popovic asked. "How do we have enough knowledge to handle the next phase of the company? Including me, how do I learn and grow to be able to do my position of CEO the best I can?"

According to Popovic, the secret is to provide people with lots of opportunities to grow and learn from early on. "So not waiting until someone says, 'Hey, I've been in this position. I feel stuck. I'm looking for improvement,'" Popovic explained. "We approach the person and say, 'Hey, you're doing a really good job. Why don't we tackle another challenge?' [We're] constantly pushing people out of their comfort zone, and people [are] proving us right."

Piece of Cake
A moving consultant for Piece Of Cake arrives to her destination on a company motorbike. @PieceOfCakeMoving via Instagram

Popovic also noted that he believes he made his ambition a reality by consistently stepping outside his comfort zone, and he advises all budding entrepreneurs to do the same. "Think big and don't put any limitations on your dream because it's possible if you have a good product and a good service," Popovic advised. "If you have some value that you're providing to consumers, it's [just] a matter of time [before] it's going to pick up. It's going to get to the right people, and then when it all gets rolling, it can become really big. So think big. Dream big."

Current Success and Future Plans

Popovic's creative strategy has proven effective. With hubs in Miami, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Dallas and its corporate headquarters in New York, Piece of Cake is a rapidly expanding business. With 800 people and 350 trucks, the company performs over 100,000 transfers yearly throughout all 50 states without outside funding.

"Seeing that something that we started so small with one truck and few employees [now] living and supporting hundreds and seeing that brand that we sketched in a notebook in every major city of the US — that's definitely something that excites me and inspires me to wake up every day and to serve the company the best I can," Popovic concluded.

Voyo Popovic's journey from a car valet to a successful entrepreneur is a testament to the power of perseverance, continuous learning, and strategic thinking. Popovic has built a thriving business by identifying opportunities for improvement within the moving industry and committing to exceptional customer service. His story highlights the importance of stepping out of one's comfort zone, thinking big, and dreaming even bigger.