According to the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), more than 9.1 million firms are owned by women in the United States. These businesses employ nearly 7.9 million people and have generated $1.4 trillion in sales.
As part of the DetailXPerts’ triple bottom line of people, planet, and profit, DetailXPerts seeks to empower men and women interested in entrepreneurship and starting their own business. DetailXPerts Franchisee Katrina Forster is one of the many people positively affected by DetailXPerts’ commitment to developing business leaders.
Forster signed as the 50th DetailXPerts franchise owner. Forster is one of the youngest franchisees signed to DetailXPerts and this savvy business owner already has two mobile units in operation with plans for expansion.
In honor of National Women’s History Month, we asked Katrina Forster to share with us her typical day and then asked her what insights she has for other franchise owners and aspiring entrepreneurs.
A Day In The Life of Katrina Forster
4:00am Wake up. I spend an hour reading and meditating.
5:00am I drink a glass of lemon water and workout.
I believe in caring for mind, body, and soul. Reading, meditation, and exercise helps me get the day going and helps me to mentally prepare for the work day ahead.
6:00am I shower and get dressed
7:00am I’m in the office and have a standing video conference with my lead technician briefing him on the day ahead so he knows the flow of the day.
My lead technician is in charge of informing the other members of the team.
I use the remaining time of the 7 o’clock hour to read and respond to any emails that have come in over the weekend (if it’s a Monday) or overnight (during the week).
8:00-10:00am I eat breakfast – usually some type of egg. Then, I make phone calls – this includes:
Courtesy Calls – Reminding clients they have services scheduled for the next day
Follow-Up Calls – Reaching out to clients that were serviced the day before to ensure that their appointment went well. The DetailXPerts guarantee of 100% satisfaction or we make it right is especially important to me, so these calls are critical. I always ask two questions –
- In what ways could we improve?
- Would you recommend the services to family and friends?
Demo Calls – Reaching out to perspective clients and scheduling a demo appointment for them to see our work in person.
Late Morning and Early Afternoon
10:00am – 3:00pm Depending on the day of the week this block of time will vary but I will generally be doing one of the following:
- Grabbing lunch sometime between 11:00am and 1:00pm
- Attend a networking event
- Go on a demo with the technicians
- Managing the technicians’ calendar for the rest of the week
- Continuing to make and accept calls scheduling appointments
4:00pm At this time I start preparing for the end of the day. I go through the office closing procedures I’ve established and make sure my lead technician has everything he will need to direct the others the next day.
5:00 – 6:00pm I leave the office around this time and may head to an evening networking event.
I typically eat dinner between 4pm and 6 pm. Dinner is my largest meal of the day. After, dinner I relax a little before bed.
8:00pm I’m ready for bed.
Takeaways for Current Owners and Aspiring Entrepreneurs
Making time to eat throughout the day is critical. It’s important to make healthy food choices and eat at regular intervals because eating will give you the energy you need to remain productive and creative throughout the day.
You need to schedule in time for activities that allow you to blow off steam. For me those activities are reading, meditation, and exercise. Owning your own business can be stressful but finding an activity that will help you relax helps you to remain centered and productive.
Be persistent. Owning your own business is hard work and if you want to succeed you have to be persistent. Lack of persistence is one of the major causes of small businesses failing.
In this industry, the key to repeat business is contracts, closing contracts. Sometimes you will hear “No,” but don’t let that discourage you and cause you to give up. Keep going. Be persistent.
Business Development and Delegation
You need to make time to grow your business. My lead technician and I rely on each a lot for business development. We make phone calls to prospective customers together.
Although, it’s fine to delegate and have help, it’s very important that you do it yourself, right off the bat so you can keep track of the “yes”s and the “no”s.
If you’re not making any of the calls then you don’t know how many people you as a business are reaching out to and how many people are saying “yes.” By participating in business development you are saying, “I want my numbers to show, ‘yes.'”
Don’t rely on anybody else to grow your business. If you want to be successful, if you want to see results, you’re going to have to do it yourself.
Build to Grow
This goes hand in hand with growing your business, you have to build to grow.
Build a good team.
That starts with the hiring process. Hiring good people who embrace your vision is key. My lead technician is great and I hired good people to work with him. He manages all the other technicians. Building a good team takes some of the stress off you as the owner.
Favorite Part About Being a Business Owner
I’m the boss. I make the rules. With that comes great responsibility though. I know that if I don’t follow through and things don’t work out it falls on me, and I don’t get paid.
Best Part of Being a DetailXPerts Franchisee
The customers. I enjoy seeing customers happy and satisfied with the product and final results. After their first cleaning customers are ecstatic. I’ve had many people say, “My car looks better than when I first purchased it.” That makes me feel good.
On Being a Woman in a Male Dominated Industry
I have not had any negative feedback working as a woman in this industry.
A lot of the decision makers are receptive because they are open to the product. Our unique steam-cleaning process and the organic products we use help the service sell itself.
I have had people surprised that I’m in the auto industry, especially at networking events, but it’s never been in a bad way. On the contrary, they want to know more about our service and products and encourage me in growing my business.
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