Greg and his wife, Katie, have lived in the Dallas area for over 40 years and raised six children together. Greg and Katie each had a parent who suffered with dementia during the last years of life. In addition to being a father to six, husband, and member of the church and community for 41 years, he was also a provider, working as a corporate property and liability insurance underwriter and broker. But, the company he worked for was bought in 2009 and by March of the next year he was laid off. Greg Dodd knows firsthand what if feels like to be cast aside after working diligently and loyally for many years.
2010 became a “now or never” moment for Greg and Katie. They decided it was time to be business owners.
They were drawn to the franchise model where they could buy into a business that had procedural outlines, marketing, and proven results in other territories.
Greg and Katie Dodd joined Seniors Helping Seniors® in-home services in 2010 and are currently providing help to seniors and their families in Dallas and the surrounding area. Seniors Helping Seniors® services include companionship, light housekeeping, cooking, transportation, and assistance with personal care.
The need for such services isn’t going away. On the contrary, demand for elder services will grow with the prolongation of average life expectancy. The growth of the senior population is one of the most important demographic developments of the 21st century. By 2030, the U.S. Bureau of Census predicts one in five Americans will be seniors.
“We provide the in home help that seniors need, from people who understand them the most. Our helpers are also seniors - compassionate, active, dependable seniors, doing what they love to do. We provide a broad range of non-medical services, including assistance with personal care and medication reminders,” said Greg.
Greg recalled hearing through the North Dallas Chamber of Commerce about SCORE. He arranged a couple of one on one counseling sessions to glean additional insights into the target demographic, gain advice on the brand, brochure, and advertising. Greg also sharpened his skills in the areas of social media and branding by attending SCORE webinars.
When asked if he would recommend SCORE to other entrepreneurs, Greg said, “Yes, SCORE has provided some good resources. I’m a little different, being a franchise partner but branding and social media applies to everyone.”
What advice would Greg give another entrepreneur? “Evaluate yourself first. You have to be able to do something that you have the basic skills to do well, and the interest. You want to have pride of ownership in the business you build and the service you provide. Know what role you’re going to play. Are you going to start or run the business – or both? Look at the importance of the product or service, and then meet the demand. Establish your niche, be a quality provider.”
In picking a franchise network, Greg has some additional advice. “Assuming you have decided on the product or service, I'd say the philosophy, the atmosphere, and attitude are important. You want the right mix or match. Is it privately owned or a subsidiary of a global corporation? How do they select their franchisees? Trying to get someone to buy an open territory is one thing, but building a franchise network with quality people should be the goal. That is one of the things that drew us to Seniors Helping Seniors. You can learn how to do QuickBooks, but integrity, passion, people skills, and compatibility are not things easily learned. Seniors Helping Seniors does a great job of building their network with quality people.”
What Greg and Katie learned from their franchise selection journey and their own experiences with their parents helps guide the way they treat clients, clients’ families, and how they manage their business. Greg commented that it is a very rewarding business. The clients and their families undoubtedly feel that way, too.