A large part of my story is rooted in entrepreneurship. Growing up, I was raised in an entrepreneurial household, even if I didn’t recognize it at the time. Shortly after my birth in the great state of Texas, my parents made the decision to pack up our lives and move 650 miles east to Huntsville, AL, where they had no family and no friends. They took a chance on starting a commercial real estate appraisal company. 

As a kid,I saw my dad putting in the long hours required to build a successful company and noticed that he was also at every one of my sporting events, all of my parent-teacher conferences, school events and all of the other seemingly small events in a child’s life. My friends’ parents, who had taken traditional corporate career paths and seemed to be very successful, weren’t always at those events and that is a memory that came back to me when my son was born.

Having a dad who pursued his own business in the commercial real estate world, I had a lot of opportunities that friends my age didn’t; from helping with rent roll data entry projects to punching the holes for coil bound marketing packages for commercial properties, it was exhilarating (sarcasm noted). While I’m sure I would have rather been doing anything else at the time, gaining these experiences was formative for me.

When I graduated high school, it wasn’t too clear to me what I was going to do with the rest of my life. I assumed I would get a business degree from a 4-year university and then go down the commercial real estate path that I grew up around. The 07-08 market crash made me rethink that idea.

Mid-way through college, I decided to enlist in the Army National Guard after seeing an uncle build a successful law career starting out in the ARNG. It didn’t matter much to me at that time of enlistment what I would be doing in the ARNG as long as it included going through basic training at Fort Benning in Georgia (if you’re going to do it, might as well do the hardest one!). I ended up spending six years in the Army National Guard and learned a lot about myself, what it means to be a leader, sacrifice and most importantly how to persevere through challenges.

After my stint in the ARNG, I moved back to Huntsville with plans to resume my commercial real estate career. Life had other plans for me.

Out of the blue one day, I received a call from a former neighbor asking me to come into his office. I knew this neighbor owned his own business in the janitorial space but that was the extent of it. When I got to his office he asked me what I knew about franchising; at the time, McDonalds and Subway were the only “franchises” that I really knew about. Turns out, this neighbor was an area representative for the janitorial brand he owned and he had the rights to several states in the southeast for bringing on franchise owners under him and supporting them.

Having no experience in franchising, I had no business standing up a franchise recruiting function from scratch but this neighbor took a chance on me and that’s exactly what I did.

After getting into franchising, I fell in love with the concept. I was getting to help people make the jump from corporate employee to successful business owner and even though my role in that process was very small, I gained immense satisfaction from being the first person they would deal with on that journey.

I stayed with that company for several years eventually being picked up by the home office to help on the national brand expansion efforts. While it was a great experience, I was ready for a change, which is when I had the opportunity to join a startup franchise sales organization (FSO) as one of the first developers.

During my tenure with the FSO, I had the opportunity to run development for nine different franchise brands across various industries and was indirectly involved with a dozen others. Working with brands at different growth stages in completely different industries provided an experience that few others in franchising can say they have. I have helped brands become franchises, I have helped new franchisors bring on their first franchisees and I have helped brands grow to a point where they are acquired but the real highlight of my career is knowing that I have personally helped hundreds of individuals and families take the leap into entrepreneurship through franchising.

After helping so many others enter the world of business ownership, it was time for me to do the same by partnering with The Perfect Franchise. In my role, I am an independent business owner but share and collaborate with my partners at TPF to provide the best possible experience and outcomes for our clients, much like a franchise. I am able to continue with my passion for helping others become business owners while enjoying the same benefits of business ownership myself.

The level of freedom and flexibility that comes from business ownership is unrivaled in the career market. Having the ability to stay home with my son if he is not feeling well, go on last minute family vacations, not have to worry about endless travel that takes me away from family and being present for what is truly important in life are the top benefits of business ownership for me.

Success isn’t guaranteed and business ownership takes hard work but the rewards are unparalleled. If you want more out of your own life and are ready to explore whether business ownership through franchising can help you achieve your goals, I look forward to helping you explore this path.