GF: How has your time in the Army and after influenced PuroClean’s franchisee recruitment strategy?
SW: I was initially told that none of my Army experience was good preparation. I found out that was completely wrong. I am so glad I did not listen to those voices, as everything I learned in the Army has had application in my business career. Knowing this has been incredibly valuable in helping us speak to military veterans about their transition to business ownership.
GF: Why do military veterans make good franchisees?
SW: Military veterans make good franchisees because they understand the value of following systems, and every franchise is built on systems! They tend to follow them rather than ignore them or reinvent them, as some who have not served sometimes do. They also learn leadership, the value of teamwork, and work ethic – subjects in extremely short supply in our education system today. Good leaders who build good teams that follow our systems to accomplish the mission are dream franchise owners for PuroClean.
GF: How does the PuroVet program help military veterans become franchisees? What are the additional offerings?
SW: PuroVet is all about finding good military veterans, and we accomplish this through awareness and communication. Our training systems are designed to help people with no knowledge of our industry become successful business owners.
GF: What does the success of the PuroVet program look like to you?
SW: Success for PuroClean is growing our community of franchise owners who, in turn, provide a vital service to their local communities. We are an emergency services business. When something bad happens where someone works or lives, they cannot work or live there again until PuroClean arrives and makes it safe again. It is incredibly rewarding to provide a service that is so essential in every community.
GF: You’re a big advocate of the servant leadership style. How do you embody this when guiding the brand?
SW: Servant Leadership is all about taking care of those you serve before taking care of yourself. To me, this means putting the success of our franchise owners ahead of our own success. We do this confident that when our franchise owners are successful, then we will be too. We live in a dynamic, constantly changing world, and so for me, this involves constantly listening to the voice of our franchise owners as well as the voice of our marketplace and doing the right thing for them.
GF: What inspires you in your career and your personal life?
SW: I am inspired by faith, family, my incredible community of franchise owners and the amazing visionary leadership of company owners Mark Davis and Frank Torre. My faith has guided my entire business career. My family has provided the encouragement and support to work very hard to achieve success. I am truly grateful for all the many blessings of my life.