National Women’s Small Business Month: Support Female Entrepreneurs
October 4, 2021 | AUTHOR: Office Pride
Happy National Women’s Small Business Month! At Office Pride Commercial Cleaning Services, we are proud of all the women who chose to own their own business by opening an Office Pride franchise.
Office Pride has been listed among Franchise Business Review’s (FBR’s) Top 50 Franchises for Women, a prestigious list based exclusively on franchisee satisfaction ratings and reviews. FBR reports that 30% of single-unit franchises are owned by women.
“The women in our company prove every day that with a flexible business model, they can do it all and do it well,” says Todd Hopkins, founder and CEO of Office Pride.
Office Pride’s female franchise owners came to Office Pride from all walks of life. They previously had worked in a wide variety of industries, including sales, customer service, commercial cleaning, healthcare, ministry and accounting. They were entrepreneurs, teachers, truck drivers, military veterans and corporate America stars.
All had their own reasons for starting their own business, but the bottom line was they wanted to control their own destiny.
“I wanted to own my own business because I was looking for an opportunity to reinvent myself from a corporate executive role after the company restructured,” says Damaris Coles, who launched Office Pride of San Antonio-Helotes with her husband, Phillip, last spring. “The change enabled me to take a step back, reflect and re-evaluate what was most important to me. In doing so, I recognized that my skills would enable me to make a positive difference in my community and the lives of others, while focusing on my faith and family as an entrepreneur.”
Coles adds, “Women entrepreneurs are trailblazers who operate in excellence, creativity and passion for what they do. That is a combination that can’t go wrong!”
Ashley Winkle was seeking more flexibility and better work-life balance when she started her first Office Pride location, Office Pride of The Shoals-Florence, in 2017. Now a multi-unit owner who also runs Office Pride of Birmingham-Homewood, she says the life of an entrepreneur suits her. “You really can change your schedule as you need to, day to day. I can go to all my kids’ school activities and still do the work I need to do later in the day.”
That flexible schedule was also important to Kim Burckhardt who launched her franchise, Office Pride of Westminster-Eldersburg in April 2020. When Burckhardt’s four school-age children were sent home during the pandemic, she split her time between homeschooling in the morning and working in her Office Pride business in the evening. “I wanted to run a recession proof, service-based business that also gave me flexibility to be present for my family and loved ones,” she says. “I wanted to run a company that isn’t just out to make money but also use its resources to make a positive impact on the local community. I have a heart for making a positive impact on those around me.”
Julie Hirschauer opened her first Office Pride franchise in 1998 and now serves as the area developer for Greater Indianapolis and Fort Wayne, Indiana, to supplement her income to support her ministry. “I also wanted to provide for my family while tapping into my creative and competitive nature,” she says.
Hirschauer loves that her role as area developer gives her the opportunity to mentor others seeking a new challenge.
All of the women agreed that this is an exciting time to be a female business owner. Burckhardt says, “Many small, woman-owned businesses are putting their heart and soul into their companies. The dedication I bring to my home and family, I also bring to my clients. The tenacity with which I raise my children, I bring to growing the company and continually striving to make a positive impact in the community.”
Check out Office Pride’s franchise locations today to request a free, no-obligation, custom quote.