A Right at Home senior care franchise can not only help improve the quality of life for elders and their loved ones, but also for the franchise owners themselves. In this article, we explore how three Right at Home franchise owners pursued a change in their careers and found greater personal fulfillment as well.
Honoring a Promise to Stay Right at Home
Kristen Carlson had been working as a hospital administrator for 12 years when her elderly aunt Estelle’s health began to decline. Realizing that Estelle required extra care and knowing she wanted to remain in her home, Kristen began searching for solutions. As a hospital administrator, Kristen thought that securing care for Estelle would be straightforward. But, as she began interviewing companies, it didn’t take long for her to realize the process of finding suitable services was daunting and confusing. Through determination and commitment to her promise to keep Estelle comfortably at home, Kristen found the care she needed, and Estelle, a lifelong Galveston resident, was able to live happily at home until her death at the age of 91.
The experience greatly influenced Kristen’s decision to create a better solution for aging and disabled individuals and their families. With an inheritance from her beloved aunt Estelle, Kristen purchased her Right at Home franchise in Galveston. In 2006 at Right at Home’s annual meeting, I met so many franchisees. The culture of the Right at Home’s people I met sealed the deal for me. They love operating their businesses,” Kristen said. “Being able to provide safe, exceptional services to enable our clients to stay ‘right at home’ as they grow older is what our Right at Home franchise in Galveston is all about. I’m honored to be able to serve my community in this way.”
In fact, Kristen’s RAH franchise gives back to the community in myriad ways. The business has developed a strong relationship with the local rotary club, which is 120 members strong. During the height of the pandemic, they worked with local restaurants and businesses to provide over 6,000 meals to hospitals, clinics, and first responders. “Our mission is to improve the quality of life for those we serve and to give back to the community we love,” Kristen said. “We live and breathe our mission each and every day. Our passion drives our daily work!”
Kristen’s aunt’s legacy is the motivation behind hiring, developing, and retaining exemplary caregivers and office staff. “I’m very picky about who I select to be on my team. I choose each caregiver as if I were selecting them to care for my aunt Estelle. It’s important every member of my staff reflects the values of the business,” Kristen said. “In April 2022,” she explained, “our franchise received the highest caregiver satisfaction rating of the entire RAH family! That means the world to me.”
Kristen’s daughter, who worked for her for many years, purchased her own Right at Home territory in Round Rock, Texas, five years ago and she couldn’t be happier. “We are continuing to honor Aunt Estelle’s legacy, and the values and mission of RAH in all we do,” said Kristen.
Giving Back – One Employee and Client at a Time
Reid Grier grew up in South Carolina and was raised by an ER nurse who later worked in hospital administration. He saw his mother devote years to her career in healthcare and then provide care to his grandmother who suffered from dementia and grandfather who had difficulty ambulating. But healthcare was not a focus for Reid when he headed to Virginia for college. Instead, he graduated and worked for many years in investment banking. “There’s a lot of money to be made in investment banking,” Reid said, “But I realized I was not fulfilled with the work. I wanted something more.”
Understanding that he’s always had a passion for helping others and that his ultimate goal was to own his own business, he began looking beyond investment banking. He felt a service-based business would be a good fit. “This was partly due to the low capital investment required to get started,” he explained, “I looked at franchises and I looked at businesses which weren’t franchises. That part didn’t really matter to me as much as doing something to provide more satisfaction in my everyday work.”
“During my research, Right at Home continued to come into my radar. I realized there was an opportunity to buy an existing Right at Home franchise in Miami, and I liked the fact that, since this was a resale opportunity, I didn’t have to start from scratch. I met the owner, and he was a great guy running a solid business,” Reid explained, “But, before taking the plunge, I went to Right at Home Discovery Day, and I immediately felt at home. Meeting everyone at the corporate office really hit it home for me!”
“Operating a RAH franchise provides fulfillment on many levels,” he explained. “I’m not only able to leverage my business and finance experience to make smart decisions that serve the business well, but I also have the opportunity to create positive outcomes for our clients and employees!” Reid explained he is extremely focused on building an amazing team and ensuring his employees find their careers to be both financially and personally fulfilling.
“We over-invest in our business and employees—through training, support, and recognition,” Reid said. “We have an immersive orientation program and a generous employee incentive program which includes a signing bonus, a 60-day bonus, and a three, six, and 12-month bonus structure. We also give away incentives to employees like air fryers, tote bags, lunch boxes, and fun items that keep people engaged and excited. Employees who feel valued, appreciated, and well compensated are more likely to show the same level of commitment in their roles in caring for our clients. Happy employees are also more likely to stay onboard as an integral part of the team for the long term.” Reid also gives back to his community by serving organizations such as his local church, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and the Parkinson’s Foundation.
Matchmaking Caregivers with Elders in Need
Sidney Chugani was living in the U.S. and his parents were in India. After a brief illness, his father passed away leaving his mother living alone in India and having a challenging time with the loss. Not only was his mother understandably distraught when she lost her husband, but she was also having difficulty living on her own, cooking, and caring for herself. Sydney tried to find the help his mother needed, but he was challenged by the distance and lack of available services. Realizing it would be best to move his mother to the U.S. to be with family and receive the care she needed, his mother moved into his home to live with Sidney, his wife, and their two daughters.
For 17 years, Sidney had been working in sales for a major retailer. When he lost his father and experienced firsthand the fear and complexity associated with providing care for his mother, he recognized a deep need to create meaningful change in his personal and professional life. He wanted more fulfillment from his work and greater flexibility in his schedule. He needed to find work-life balance.
Sidney began researching franchise opportunities. He downloaded data and reports on a variety of franchises, from food and drink franchises to home care franchises, and his attention continually returned to Right at Home.
“The Right at Home opportunity made it possible for me to focus on my priorities,” Sidney said, “Caring for Mom, having more flexibility in my work schedule, and finding greater fulfillment in my career. Now I’m a matchmaker for caregivers and the people in need of care!”
“It really is a form of matchmaking. You need to understand the client’s needs and goals as much as the different personalities you’re putting together. It’s important to get the right fit. Some people are chatting and enjoy lively conversation. Other people may prefer peace and quiet. It’s important to get the match right when connecting caregivers with those in need.”
Sadly, Sidney’s mother passed away in late 2021. It was a difficult time for his family, but he says she is in a better place now. “I am glad I could see her every day, and she was not alone in a hospital or nursing home. She was safe, comfortable, and loved right at home. I am so happy I was able to do that for her. And now, through my business, I’m able to give that experience to others.”
“The basis of this business is simple. Just do the right thing in the right way. Be good to others. Treat everyone the way you’d like to be treated…I apply that simple logic to my employees, caregivers, clients, and community. I’m part of a neighborhood group that gets together to discuss our businesses and offer one another guidance and advice. And I’m very hands-on with my business. All my clients know me, and I email or call them directly to check in. Their families are so grateful to us for helping their loved ones receive the care they need at home.”
“I am thrilled to say business has won numerous awards and recognition from the home office. “They are excellent at acknowledging our achievements,” Sidney said, “But I get the greatest fulfillment from helping others. You cannot put a price on that. It is priceless.”
Becoming a Right at Home Senior Care Franchise Owner
If you’re looking for more fulfillment and flexibility in your professional life, a senior care franchise may be the right fit for you. The Right at Home (RAH) business model is designed to provide supportive care services that allow each client to retain as much of their independence and dignity as possible while remaining in their own home. Some franchise owners have a background in healthcare, but most do not. Many RAH caregivers provide companionship and personal care services. These include playing cards with a client, preparing meals, helping them brush their teeth, and getting dressed, as well as helping with errands. Additionally, some franchisees also provide in-home nursing services through their business. All these services help to improve the client’s quality of life and ease the burden on the client’s family and friends who are often overwhelmed with providing and coordinating care for their loved ones.