Franchise Owner Spotlight: Corporate “Dropout” Finds the Right Fit in Franchise Ownership
November 15, 2018 // Franchising.com // Many refer to the corporate setting as “a rat race,” where it may feel like a cycle of unexciting work and a place that holds profits above quality. That was how Tracy DeGraff, BirthdayPak Franchise Owner of Tampa/St. Petersburg, Florida, felt about one year ago. Tracy experienced a range of corporate settings, but no matter where she worked, there wasn’t a feeling of satisfaction. “I went from the largest direct mail company in the world, where I didn’t have a voice and was just a number, to a small company where I had a voice but no support,” she said.
One day, Tracy realized that what she was looking for couldn’t be found in a corporation. A LinkedIn message from a franchise consultant and a subsequent call with Chad Bickle, vice president of franchise development at BirthdayPak, opened her mind to a new possibility: Franchise ownership.
What Sold Tracy on BirthdayPak
Tracy gave the prospect of franchise ownership serious thought over several months, taking time to research BirthdayPak fully before making the move from a secure office job to being her own boss. Her decision was cemented after BirthdayPak CEO Paul Berman told her why she is the perfect fit - she has the energy, enthusiasm and passion. In fact, he’s turned away people with plenty of capital if they don’t have the passion or willingness to work hard. “I think that says a lot about a company - where the CEO says, ‘we want you, not someone with big dollars,’” Tracy says.
Bringing Passion to Her Role Every Day
Tracy is brimming with passion as she spreads the story of BirthdayPak in a new market. “When I talk to business owners, my story resonates with them, especially other franchise owners. I tell them why BirthdayPak is different from other advertising, and why I invested the money. I did a lot of research and really believe in BirthdayPak,” Tracy says.
Tracy’s talent and ambition are reflective of her efforts. In just three months, she has opened two zones out of the seven purchased in her market.
The Support Is Second to None
Tracy found her footing easily from the start because of the tremendous support she receives from the corporate office and fellow franchise owners. “Ads are created incredibly quickly, the systems are fairly easy to use, everyone is always very responsive and knowledgeable - and they know me,” she says.
Mark Neujahr, national training director, trained and went on sales calls with Tracy, as well as provided valuable insight into the growth of BirthdayPak in the neighboring Orlando market. In addition, Kristy Blasey, franchise owner of Raleigh, North Carolina, started at the same time as Tracy and the two make a point to talk frequently, and have even tag teamed on sales calls in each other’s markets.
Do You Want to Escape the 9-to-5?
Have you thought about making the leap from corporate America to franchise ownership? To be your own boss and never miss out on an important life event again? If you have what it takes, and a franchise that brings the support, take the first, no obligation step to learn more. BirthdayPak markets are filling quickly, but some are still available. Call BirthdayPak at 1-888-206-0083 for more information.
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