What are some of the challenges you’ve faced as a business owner?
I think the biggest challenge I’ve faced overall is learning that a franchise model is a very different way of doing business. It is not a world I was accustomed to – I was raised in education and early childhood education. Learning how to run a franchise system has been challenging, but exciting!
Can you tell us a little bit about your company culture?
For me, it’s all about joy and passion. We have both a small and large footprint, our corporate staff is only about 20 people. It’s an engaged and energetic group of people supporting my franchise schools. I think when children are your business, it has to be about inspiration, it has to be all about the children. Our entire corporate team and franchise owners all embrace the mission and the reason why we do what we do.
What are some of the goals you have?
Right now, we are working towards continued growth. Our goal is to open at least five schools per year. We are expanding in different markets throughout Florida, but also out of state. We want to grow our reach so we can provide more support around the nation – every child deserves to attend a Creative World School! A lot of our competitors are much bigger than us, so our plan is to continue to grow so we too can play in the big leagues.
Speaking of competition, how do you set yourself apart?
We are competing against brands with hundreds of schools, but our goal isn’t necessarily to be that big. We are more of a boutique brand, currently with 30 locations. Part of the differentiator for our franchisees is that we are small enough to be collaborative. Our corporate team can provide a lot more one-on-one, intimate support. But the biggest thing that sets us apart is our building design and curriculum. Creative World Schools have a unique look and feel that is different than all our competitors.
Do you have a proudest moment as CEO?
I think one of my proudest moments is becoming system accredited. We are always looking for ways to challenge ourselves. I think when you reach beyond your comfort zone, it brings recognition but also validates all the hard work. Doing things you’re passionate about and having other people recognize that is always a proud moment.
What does it mean to be selected as an Honoree this year?
We’re super excited about it! It validates all the work we’ve been doing and recognizes the growth we’ve had, especially during the pandemic, which has been a big challenge. To be able to be strong, to pivot, and to continue to have new projects and to grow, it’s validation that we are doing something right.
Is there anyone you’d like to thank?
I’d like to thank my incredible team and our franchise owners as well. We couldn’t do it without them. They are the ones on the ground, so they make it possible for us to be here.