A former home care owner’s experience may offer some important lessons to draw from, regardless of where you are in your business ownership life cycle; lessons about sales, managing life and business transitions, and life insights from a hard working and determined entrepreneur.
Business and Life Insights from a Former Home Care Owner:
Sixth Sense Solutions came across a very talented former home care business owner, Lisa Bennett. Lisa’s story about how she came to own a homecare company may sound a bit like your story.
Lisa faced a series of life events that led her into the homecare industry. The specific details may be a little different from your personal story, such as what industry she came from and the catalysts for the transitions, but similar to a lot of stories we have heard: there were deeply personal reasons to buy a homecare business that involved experience with family members and health along with a desire to help and finding a deeper purpose to make a difference.
Interruptions are opportunities:
Lisa had a great corporate job in high tech at HP. Things were humming along. Then, she experienced some unexpected changes at her employer. There was a rare opportunity to opt in to an early retirement offer, which she decided to take in order to alleviate some of the financial and parental stress of two high-pressure careers with two young children. She knew she was a great instructor (she had been a software instructor at HP for several years) and she and her husband agreed that she would leave high-stress high tech to be a high-touch homeschooler for their two children.
Lisa thought at the time that she didn’t ever have to work again – she saved and invested well and was set to retire in her early 40s. But life changes, and the new job title of teacher and separation from her husband (they had met and worked in the same office) led to estrangement in the marriage, and ultimately to divorce.
After returning to high tech and weathering a very chaotic period in her new company’s history, her entire department was laid off, and she again reconsidered a new job transition, tired of the high pressure of high tech.
This created another catalyst for change. She left Silicon Valley where she had lived half her life, built a home in the adjacent county and evaluated new business opportunities that were not in high tech.
Lisa reviewed franchise opportunities with a franchise consultant and narrowed down her options between two choices: coaching or home care.
At the time, Lisa had four Aunts with Alzheimer’s disease. She desperately wanted to help those that suffered from chronic diseases such as Alzheimer’s and provide the support that families needed.
Finding a Deeper Purpose:
Lisa invested into a Franchise system and became a franchisee home care owner.
Through her ownership role in home care, she learned how to bond with people at a new level. It was a very heartfelt job. To this day, Lisa is still friends with some of her Caregivers and clients.
There were problems with franchise ownership though. The dynamic and its limitations in that structure were too restrictive for her. She had a district manager at the time who was her greatest business asset, but who had left soon after she made her investment into the network and was not replaced.
Lisa felt she was at a turning point and she visited with an attorney for options. The contract was written in favor of the franchisor. She decided to go solo and managed to break away from the franchise network.
She re-branded with a new logo, new banners, and had customers sign new contracts. She kept her LLC, the same office, and same license and kept growing.
Sixth Sense Solutions’ Findings
Even as an independent, Lisa ran into a deeper question about being a homecare business owner. She had to take inventory of herself. She knew she was a strong task master and understood she was great after every-day jobs and assignments and building relationships. Lisa knew she was a great teacher. She knew she cared for people deeply. But the unique challenges posed with ownership of the homecare business, such as the heartache, loss, and the frequent loneliness of small office management, made for continuation long term not the right fit for her.
Turning Towards Experts:
Lisa decided to sell the business and find an industry where there was a different dynamic with clients where she would experience less heart ache and still employ her areas of strength and expertise.
She attended a Tony Robbins/Cloe Madanes life coaching program, and began a year-long business coaching program for female entrepreneurs.
Still unsure about her market niche, she attended a seminar for women entrepreneurs. At this presentation there was a slide, which showed what it was that people need and are willing to pay for: one of those items on the slide was financial coaching and services.
Have a Vision:
Lisa is a self made millionaire and not just from her success in business but her ability to save and invest with her methods and strategies that worked well. Lisa explains how it clicked: “I could tell people how I did what I did…I could teach people to be financially independent. I could help women like myself to work towards that vision and achieve that vision through good habits…” And she could share her methods and helping people understand “money archetypes” (a couple of examples are the pleasure seeker who spends money immediately and the guardian who feels “it could all fall apart”).
Know your audience:
Lisa coaches men and women as clients, but women have a greater need in this area: generally employed and under 40 (her methods take compound interest and time). She offers three packages for financial education: basic money literacy, stock market basics, and passive income through real estate. She emphasizes the need to focus on strategies and tactics that feel comfortable for your personal money archetype: “You will only stick with money management that feels good to you.”
When people say yes they see the value – just show them the value of what you’re offering.
When a prospect says no, she asks what holds them back? Often it is an inability to see the future to asses what’s happening now and the impact on the future. She has a free consulting session available to people interested in learning what she does and how it can be of value.
Insights on what Makes American Business Unique:
Lisa traveled to Denmark for the sole reason of seeing firsthand why it is considered one of happiest countries in the world. She spent time couch surfing (she used an app that offered references and reviews) and she posed the question: “Why did the people she met with prefer to live in Denmark?” The interesting thing about the premise of that question is that half the people Lisa met with and a large percentage of the Denmark population are expats (13.3% of current residents). Lisa admits her theory is similar to the famous Indian fable of the blind men feeling the elephant, where each blind man feels a different part of the elephant’s body (such as an ear or tusk), and thus comes away with a different impression than the others. But she posits that because of “the social net, healthcare net, etc…that these nets…cause a different kind of motivation toward work, while here in the USA while there are safety nets for extremes, one must generally build your safety net here…we don’t have a great net. That discomfort creates urgency and drives Americans to achieve something bigger – where it’s not always about money”.
Living a balanced dynamic life:
Lisa is diverse in her personal life as well as being an active mom, entrepreneur and investor. She does open mic, memorizes poetry, dances, and emphasizes a lifetime of learning “even if it’s using your other hand to brush your teeth”. As a former NCAA volleyball player, she is committed to staying active and notes about aging: “I worked with hundreds of clients and saw over and over that an attitude of gratitude has an overwhelming impact on aging better and healthier.”
Lisa’s current call to action: Do you want to know more about personal finance than 90% of the people around you? If you have a powerful desire to rock your own personal world of finance, you need the financial literacy programs from WorkforceMillionaire.com. Any reader of this post is eligible for a complimentary 30-minute discussion on the financial concern of your choice by sending email to email@example.com.
Free: blogs at http://workforcemillionaire.com and @WrkforceMillion on Twitter.
Whether you are thinking of selling your home care business or simply could benefit from an outside perspective – schedule a discovery meeting with Sixth Sense Solutions today. Call Keith Freeman at 949-241-6690, or you can reach our team via email at Keith@SixSenseSolutions.com.
The Sixth Sense Difference
Sixth Sense Solutions identifies and works with your group to clear all unnecessary obstacles for the prospect, assisting in that “handshake” with a friendly helpful home care company.
A client is more than a figure in your bottom line. While systems are necessary to operate efficiently, success starts when you cultivate the relationship during that initial call. It’s great to process dozens of leads a day, but simply relaying information about pricing and services without connecting with the customers is a costly mistake.
These are some obstacles your business can’t afford in your demand-based service market saturated with competition. When was the last time that you looked at your internal systems and scrutinized your call-handling? Your phone screeners are the first touch points for clients. The best sales team on the planet can’t close if they aren’t receiving prospects from the people answering your phones, and the best caregivers can’t care for clients that don’t come into your fold.
We’ve seen firsthand – your competition is dropping the ball because of a lack of best practices, and we’ve also seen it happen to really great companies. We can help you capitalize. Schedule a discovery meeting with Sixth Sense Solutions today. Call Keith Freeman at 949-241-6690, or you can reach our team via email at Keith@SixSenseSolutions.com.