Recently, I had the opportunity to contribute to the International Franchise Association's (IFA) Franchise Relations Dialogue forum, which provides a valuable platform for industry professionals to network and learn from each other. It was an honor to participate in the forum's Ask the Expert series and consider the questions posed by my peers. This opportunity led me to reflect on the Primrose franchise experience and the values and culture that make being a Primrose Franchise Owner so unique and personally fulfilling.
Following are highlights from a few of the questions posted during the dialogue to give you a window into life inside the Primrose Franchise system. If you are interested in learning more about joining our Primrose family, I encourage you to visit our website.
What is the essence of the culture of Primrose Schools and how often do you review and make adjustments to make sure there is consistency between stated core beliefs and everyday actions?
While our early learning and care systems are vital, they don’t come alive without recruiting the right people. We want people who are committed to our mission of making a difference for all children and our vision of delivering the best and most trusted early education and care for children and families across America. These aspirations are deeply embedded across the Primrose organization – from our engagement and performance approaches to our continuous improvement processes – and have fueled consistent and sustainable growth for our schools as well as our brand.
One of the most important values and a strong differentiator of Primrose from other brands is our commitment to corporate social responsibility. Primrose Promise, as we call it, inspires us to give without expectation and to advocate for high impact early education and care for all children, including those at greatest risk. It strengthens our culture and reinforces that a career with Primrose is much more than a job – it’s an avocation.
Social responsibility also has been embedded in our Balanced Learning® curriculum since day one. Our Happy Hearts Giving Program guides teachers to provide giving learning experiences for children. This includes partnering with parents to nurture character development within their children. Teaching children the importance of giving back helps instill in them the desire to be good people, good friends and good citizens as they grow to adulthood.
The process of developing a Primrose location is significantly longer than some franchise opportunities because of the site selection and construction timeline. What does Primrose do to keep the new franchisee engaged for 12 to 18 months while their location is under development?
We believe our success lies in engaging, educating and supporting our Franchise Owners from the moment they sign their franchise agreement. There are real estate and financing steps, a proven process of on-boarding training, and designated Support Center Staff processes to help our Franchise Owners be well prepared. Our multi-faceted approach prepares each Franchise Owner to build market recognition in their new school community and to lead and manage their business once their location is open. We offer an initial orientation, onsite and online training, ongoing communication and six months of detailed pre-opening work related to school marketing. Marketing is a critical discipline for success, so we advise new Franchise Owners to spend time immersing themselves in the integrated marketing tools and techniques we provide as well as learning about, and getting involved in, their local community.
What steps have led to your high franchise owner satisfaction ratings?
More than 70 percent of our Franchise Owners have a previous, trusted relationship with our brand. They either had children or grandchildren in our schools, worked in our schools, knew families who were happy with their Primrose experience or perhaps did business with Primrose as a vendor partner. So, I believe the majority of our Franchise Owners have a clear vision of who we are before they ever join our organization. Beyond the comprehensive and proven system we provide them, we are committed to every Franchise Owner’s success. We work with them to assess their strengths and weaknesses and then provide targeted support where they need it to help them overcome obstacles and drive growth for their business. Successful growth and profitability, in addition to fulfilling their passion to make a difference in the lives of children, drive happiness and high personal satisfaction.