Finding Balance Through Franchising
Why pursuing entrepreneurship is a win-win for both franchising and your family.
By Jo Kirchner, Primrose Schools
Parents look forward to raising families, yet many often struggle with the challenges brought on by both parents working in jobs that do not offer the flexibility parents often need. In fact, more than 56 percent of working mothers and half of working fathers say they struggle to find the right balance between their job and their family, according to a Pew Research Center study. Many parents experience the challenge of maintaining a strong commitment to their family while trying to achieve career success, and, as a result, a growing number of parents and caregivers are looking for more accommodating career paths.
Prior to becoming franchise owners, my husband and I both had successful careers in television in the greater Atlanta area – myself as a writer and producer and my husband, John, as a news anchor. We chose to leave our previous careers for franchising to balance our busy family life, while being in business for ourselves. With four children and later, two grandchildren, franchising has allowed us to find greater success, grow to multiple locations and have a positive impact on our local communities.”
– Jennifer McKnight, Franchise Owner of Primrose School of Buford, Gainesville and Braselton, Georgia.
With over 400 schools across the country, Primrose Schools franchise owners and teachers witness parent guilt daily, but they also see something else — children who are deeply and positively impacted by the influence of loving parents. For many considering owning a franchise, there is a lightbulb moment when they realize becoming an entrepreneur provides more freedom and opportunity and determine it’s not about perfection, but balance. Happiness can be measured in terms of priorities, and while priorities differ from one parent to the next, being able to identify what’s most important in one’s life is the key to finding balance.
I left my career in HR to become a stay-at-home mom after noticing that my young children were lacking in early developmental skills. Soon after, I discovered Primrose Schools and realized their approach to early childhood education could help solve the issues my kids were experiencing and allow me to still be a present mother and a providing parent at the same time.”
– Theresa Thibodeau, Franchise Owner of Primrose School of La Vista, Nebraska.
Entering into entrepreneurship, particularly franchising, where you are in business for yourself, but not by yourself, is a solution for many. In running their business, franchise owners may pursue a full-time career or choose to be an active investor and have a partner lead the day-to day operations with a strong management team in place. Many successful franchise owners have scaled their business while raising young children, while others have decided to grow only after their young children got older or left the house all together.
When my wife and I started our family and had our first child, we were trying to figure out the best child-care option, as we both worked for corporate America. I knew I wanted more flexibility inmy job and more time to spend with family and do things with my kids during the day. This made me explore franchise ownership and find a model that was a good investment in a recession resistant industry. Becoming an entrepreneur has allowed me to make my own schedule and be there when it really counts for our kids. I may have to work some additional and flexible hours based on the needs of the business, but I’m also able to show up at events for my children during the day that I’d most likely miss had I still been in my previous career.”
– Matt Evers, Franchise Owner of Primrose School of Atascocita, Crossroads Park and Copperfield, Texas.
While corporate America is aware of these challenges, and many companies are making great strides, the reality is that there is still significant work to be done in building a universal corporate environment that encourages parents to balance their responsibilities at home with their responsibilities in the office. For many, franchising is a viable option for a better quality of life.
Jo Kirchner is CEO of Primrose Schools, the leader in providing premier early education and care to children and families in the United States. Find out more about Primrose Schools here.