It has been a life-long aspiration to be a small business owner, like my father and grandfather, and in the spring of 2016, I had the opportunity to chase my entrepreneurial dreams.  I had been working with a franchise coach and several mentors to help narrow down the types of franchises that would appeal to my values, lifestyle and financial goals.  One of my coaches suggested I review the SCORE.org website and request a meeting with a mentor.  I was pleasantly surprised to find out SCORE mentors visited my local library each Thursday morning!

My successes. 
I had wanted a business where I could give back to my local community and provide services to others. I found the perfect match with Oxi Fresh of Connecticut.  In less than two months I've completed 24 jobs and have future ones scheduled.  I've helped home sellers and buyers, senior citizens and fellow small business owners clean their carpets with an eco-friendly, low moisture cleaning process.  Many clients have referred me to their family, friends and neighbors which has been a tremendous honor. 
 
How SCORE helped. 

My mentor challenged my thinking, alerted me to potential issues and offered suggestions for overcoming them.  He was generous with his time, and spent countless hours looking over my documentation.  Once I purchased the first Oxi Fresh franchise in Connecticut, I continued to stay in touch with Charlie.  He was genuinely interested in helping me succeed, and offered suggestions for networking and marketing to grow my business.  I wouldn't have such a successful start without his help, and I highly suggest that all aspiring and new business owners seek a SCORE mentor.

What's great about my mentor? 

I began meeting with my mentor, Charlie Peake, after I had selected a franchise, Oxi Fresh, that I wanted to pursue.  Charlie asked probing questions to help me think through various aspects of purchasing a franchise, marketing my services, and most importantly, creating a solid business plan to help me secure financing.  Additionally, Charlie connected me to a local attorney who helped me vet the franchise and prepare me for my visit to the corporate headquarters in July.