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Small Business Edge

Small Business Edge by Ceterus gives insight, inspiration, and advice for small business entrepreneurs from experts who have done it first hand. Entrepreneurship is more popular than ever before, but in the hype around startups and solopreneurs, the silent majority of entrepreneurs are ignored. T.K. Coleman brings you the stories of these entrepreneurs. The small and medium-sized business entrepreneurs who account for the vast majority of U.S. businesses and employment. From restaurant to franchise owners, from main street business to long-time consultants, you will hear the marketing, accounting, business and life lessons learned from decades of real small business experience. New weekly episodes with experienced entrepreneurs will teach you what it takes to make it as a successful small business or franchise entrepreneur in the 21st century.
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Mar 6, 2019

Steve Eddleston is an immigrant from New Zealand. After a successful career in Customer Support for High Tech, he now owns and operates a New England territory for Planet Fitness - the leading general fitness health club chain in the USA. He owns 15 location throughout the New England area.

On this episode of Small Business Edge, Steve not only shares a lot of practical wisdom about how to get started in the franchising world, and how to navigate a lot of the challenges that come up along the way, but Steve has a unique ability of humour and storytelling to not only cope with challenges and inspire others.

If you’re someone who is looking to start a small business or get started in the franchising world, what you’ll from Steve is that you don’t have to know all the answers to all the questions about how things are going to be okay in order to know that they’ll be okay, and that you have the power to make it so.

Discussed on this episode:

  • Why Steve left tech to run his own business
  • The reactions from his friends and family when he decided he wanted to open a gym
  • Why Planet Fitness was a good investment
  • How Steve went from owning 1 Planet Fitness to 15 in the New England area
  • Every franchise location is a completely different business even when it’s a part of the same company
  • What Steve learned about selling businesses and how to determine when it’s the right time to sell

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

Dec 23, 2018

Amanda Kingsmith is a Praxis Advisor, a yoga studio manager, a yoga teacher, a yoga business coach, a podcast host, and a world traveler.

After transitioning from the corporate world into teaching yoga, Amanda experienced that the rates for yoga classes were high, yet yoga teachers were consistently not making a sustainable income. She recognized that the business acumen in the yoga world wasn’t there, and decided to bridge that gap with her podcast on the business of yoga, M.B.Om.

On this episode, Amanda and T.K. talk about the business of yoga, as well as dive into Amanda’s workflow, how she manages a number of different jobs at once, and is able to balance working with traveling the world.

Amanda shares the resources that have helped her most to set up a productive workday, and tips for anyone who wants to dive into remote entrepreneurship.

Discussed in this episode:

  • How Amanda got into the yoga industry and began to learn about the business side of yoga
  • How to go from a part-time yoga teacher to a full-time yoga teacher
  • Shifting the mindset of asking for yoga for free and when it’s appropriate to work for free
  • How Amanda organizes her schedule
  • The importance of self-care as an entrepreneur
  • How Amanda balances travel with work
  • When you want to dive into entrepreneurship, make sure that you love what you’re doing because it’s going to be hard

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

Dec 21, 2018

Jane Banheman is the owner and founder of Blue Nectar Yoga in Falls Church, Virginia.

Jane has been practicing and teaching yoga for nearly two decades, and after working for many different organizations around the world, she decided to combine everything that she had learned to open her own studio.

The yoga industry is incredibly saturated and being in the Northern Virginia / DC area, it’s important to have a specific niche, avatar, and something that sets you apart from the competition.

On this episode, Jane shares what makes Blue Nectar Yoga unique, how to run a successful business in a saturated industry, how she prioritizes self-care in her life, and much more.

Discussed in this episode:

  • Why it’s important to love what you do everyday, and why work doesn’t have to be something that we hate  
  • How Jane got into yoga and what inspired her to open Blue Nectar Yoga
  • The challenges of the yoga industry and being a small business owner in a saturated market  
  • The transition from yoga teacher to yoga studio owner and what Jane learned through that process
  • How your competition can make you great
  • Why it’s important to get clear on your mission, who you’re trying to serve, and what you’re trying to achieve
  • What sets Blue Nectar apart from other yoga studios
  • Why self-care is key for success as a business owner

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

Nov 21, 2018

Jeremy Bollington is a multi-franchise partner and area representative for Blo Blow Dry Bar and Waxing the City, based out of Charleston, South Carolina.

Before Blo, Jeremy spent 25+ years as a banker in cities around the world like London, Hong Kong and New York. He has built big and successful teams over the last 10 years at two different institutions, but in 2015, he decided it was time to explore something different.

Today, we discuss Jeremy’s journey of entrepreneurship and franchise ownership. We also talk about the failures and insights that Jeremy accrued along the way, the do’s and don’ts of marketing, the importance of hiring great people, and more.

If you are considering entering into the franchise world or you want to level up your game, don’t miss this episode!

Discussed in this Episode:

  • What it has been like to grow a career while living and working around the world
  • Why Jeremy decided to become a Blo franchise owner
  • What Blo is and what they offer
  • What Waxing the City is and what they offer
  • What Jeremy’s average day looks like
  • How Jeremy has built a great team of people that can support him
  • The danger of complacency and how to refocus
  • Marketing do’s and don’ts for entrepreneurs and franchise owners
  • Jeremy’s advice for new entrepreneurs

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

Oct 26, 2018

Joe Zentmyer is the co-founder and CFO at First Ascent Climbing & Fitness. 

On this episode of Small Business Edge, Joe shares how the climbing community in Chicago was in need of a climbing gym for 20 years, and the founders of First Ascent were the first who were to do it successfully. 

Joe shares what sets First Ascent apart from other climbing gyms, and how they have successfully grown the business to multiple locations. 

Like any entrepreneur, Joe doesn't have a "standard" workday. He talks about what his typical week looks like, how he spends his weekends, and the importance of having his own fitness routine in his life. 

Discussed in this episode:

  • How First Ascent was able to successfully fill a need in Chicago
  • Finding a good location for a business can really impact success
  • The importance of knowing who is in your community and catering your offerings to them
  • The workflow as the CFO at First Ascent - what the weeks and weekends look like
  • How to balance personal care with work 
  • Failures, challenges, and what it’s really like to found a startup
  • Advice for following your passion

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com

Sep 29, 2018

Liz Naber is an owner at Pure Barre. Pure Barre is a total body workout that uses the ballet bar to perform movements that help burn fat and create long, lean physiques.

Liz was a soccer player all her life and didn’t believe in group fitness classes. It wasn’t until she tore her ACL that a friend suggested that she try barre. She loved it!

After a year of doing barre regularly, the company that Liz worked for was going in a different direction and she decided to make the leap into becoming a franchise owner.

On this episode of Small Business Edge, Liz shares what it’s like to be a franchise owner and how it differed from what she expected. She also shares her day-to-day routine and some of the rituals and routines that help her sustain a high level of performance, as well as advice on finding good talent.

Discussed on this episode:

  • How Liz became a Pure Barre franchise owner
  • What being a franchise owner is actually like
  • What surprised Liz about being a franchise owner
  • Day to day life for Liz
  • Rituals and routines that help Liz sustain a high level of performance
  • How to find good talent
  • How to know when to take the leap into entrepreneurship

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

Aug 20, 2018

Steve and Lynn Biddle met at a conference while they were both working at McDonald’s. Both Steve and Lynn worked their way up in McDonald’s, starting as crew kids and making their way into management, to the point that they decided to purchase McDonald’s franchises together. Steve and Lynn share what it was like to be McDonald’s Franchise owners, what they learned as franchisees, and how to build a successful franchise.

Steve and Lynn share the importance of hardwork, having great mentors, why it’s important to have fun at work, how they have been able to successfully hire great people and keep them on, what they’ve learned from working together as a couple, and how to make an impact in your community as a franchise owner.

Whether you are a current franchise owner or thinking about purchasing a franchise, you don’t want to miss this episode!

Discussed in this episode:

  • How Steve worked his way up in McDonald’s
  • When you’re in a partnership, divide the work based on your strengths
  • How to get your employees motivated
  • What it’s like to work with your spouse, and how to be successful doing so
  • “If you’re not making mistakes, you’re not trying hard enough”
  • How to find great people to purchase your franchise
  • Why it’s important to give back to your community

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

Jul 23, 2018

Nick Olson is the founder and CEO of Sandwich Math. After owning Jimmy John’s and realizing there was no good solution for accounting and bookkeeping, he started Sandwich Math, which was acquired by Ceterus in late 2017. Nick now works with Ceterus to bring a tailored accounting solution to the Jimmy John’s franchise.

On this episode of the podcast, Nick shares how he was able to run a successful Jimmy John’s franchise while starting Sandwich Math, and what he’s learned about being a successful franchise owner. He shares the most common struggles for new franchise owners, what franchisees often overlook, the challenges of where to focus your energy as a busy entrepreneur, and much more.

Discussed in this episode:

  • Slow and steady growth can help you to scale your business more easily
  • Build your network before you try and sell
  • How to get your creative ideas approved
  • Deal with problems as they come, and focus on creating a really great product or service
  • The most common struggles for new franchise owners
  • The power of advertising
  • How to choose a franchise
  • Nick’s history with Jimmy John’s
  • The challenge of figuring out where to focus your energy when you have a lot on the go
  • What franchisees often overlook

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

Jun 25, 2018

Helaine Knapp joins Small Business Edge for the first episode of season 2.

Helaine is the CEO and founder of City Row, a boutique fitness studio that combines row intervals on sexy, water machines with dynamic sculpting exercises. City Row has been open since 2014 and has grown immensely since then.

Helaine Knapp didn’t always know that she would be the founder of a successful startup in the boutique fitness industry though. Before that, she worked in high fashion, advertising, publishing and eventually the tech start up industry, and she always spent her evenings in the gym. 

After getting a back injury at 25 years old, a friend suggested rowing for an amazing workout that is low impact. Helaine wasn’t into it at all! But, Helaine saw an opportunity in the industry for a great low-impact workout, and despite her negative connotations about rowing, she couldn’t get away from it.

She found a sexy, water rowing machine and paired it with weight training. She put up a website and with the help of a friend, did a pop up class to see if anyone was interested in the idea. From there, it completely took off.

Discussed in this episode:

  • How City Row was developed and why it was so successful right off the get go
  • The challenges of working full-time and building a business on the side 
  • The biggest lessons that Helaine has learned through founding City Row
  • The consistent struggles as a founder of a small business in a competitive industry 

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com

 

May 17, 2018

Jamie was a guest on Small Business Edge in Season 1. At that time, he owned and operated over a dozen Orangetheory fitnesses. Since Jamie was on the podcast last, he has won Orangetheory fitness franchisee of the year and sold majority stakeholdership of his company.

Jamie discovered Orangetheory after spending a number of years taking classes at Flywheel and discovering a passion for group fitness classes. When he started taking classes at Orangetheory, he knew that the company was doing some revolutionary in the group fitness world. After purchasing one Orangetheory franchise, he realized that he was fulfilling a passion, while doing well financially, and he continued to grow his business, buying multiple franchises in the southern US.

On this episode of the podcast, Jamie shares why he decided to sell majority stakeholdership of his company, what that process was like, and what he learned from it. Jamie shares how he has been able to be so successful in the fitness industry, and the keys to success as a franchise and business owner, including the importance of valuing human capital and putting your members first, how to hire and retain great managers, and more.

Discussed in this episode:

 

  • The secret to success is 2 shots of espresso everyday!
  • Why Jamie invested in Orangetheory, and why he’s decided to sell
  • How to successfully sell a business and the importance of staying organized right off the get go
  • Having a good accountant is really important for a successful business
  • Having a great team is key to success with a business, and it doesn’t feel like work when you work with great people
  • Why it’s important to keep your employees happy, and how to do so
  • How to structure equity for your business and employees
  • What Jamie is currently working on - Motion Stretch Studios based around the recovery aspect of fitness
  • The importance of making new studio members feel comfortable and making the members of the studio feel like they are a part of a community
  • The 3 keys to success

 

 

 

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

May 17, 2018

Small Business Edge is kicking off Season 2 with a conversation with Ceterus CEO and founder, Levi Morehouse. Levi and TK talk about why they’ve decided to bring Small Business Edge back for a second season, what you can expect from season 2, and some of Levi’s key takeaways from the season.

Whether you are interested in entrepreneurship or already building a business, there is a ton that you can learn from the guests on this season of Small Business Edge.

Discussed in this episode:

  • Why Ceterus focuses on small business entrepreneurship
  • Why Season 2 is kicking off with Jamie Weeks
  • What to take away from Season 2

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com.

Apr 13, 2017

Brian Kiel joins Small Business Edge for the final episode of season one. 

Brian has seen franchise entrepreneurship from every angle.

From his first job as a busboy at T.G.I. Fridays he saw the inside of what made a franchise successful. He worked his way up to managing that same restaurant, jumped to corporate for Cold Stone Creamery, and built a successful career that led to his current position as Director of Franchise Relations with Massage Envy.

More than any other guest, Brian has perspective on and insights into what it takes to succeed as a franchise entrepreneur. He has years of experience working for both franchisees and franchisors and shares his knowledge on this week’s episode.

Discussed in this episode:

  • Early career at T.G.I. Fridays
  • The corporate side of franchising
  • How franchisor’s support franchisees
  • What makes the best franchisees the best?
  • Why passion is crucial to succeed in franchise entrepreneurship

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com

Apr 6, 2017

Taylor Bartels is the President of Galleon Holdings and a Franchisee for European Wax Center.

If you had told Taylor twenty years ago that he would be running a waxing business he might have thought you were crazy. It was never an obvious path, but when he and his wife started exploring franchise options, they fell in love with European Wax Center and have gone on to create a successful business enterprise.

In this episode, Taylor shares his story of making the jump into franchising, the difference between being entrepreneurial and being an entrepreneur, and why your customer is always your boss.

Discussed in this episode:

  • How Taylor made the jump to franchising
  • The difference between being entrepreneurial and being an entrepreneur
  • Can anyone be a good entrepreneur?
  • Why your customer is always your boss
  • How do you get valuable feedback from your customers?
  • Advice for those new to the franchise industry

Learn more about Ceterus at Ceterus.com

Mar 30, 2017

Damon Carnes is a Regional Developer with Amazing Lash Studio and a multi-unit owner with Massage Envy.

Like most franchise entrepreneurs Damon did not follow a straightforward path into the industry. He completed a college degree in mechanical engineering, served in the military, worked for his family business, and then spent fifteen years in management at two Fortune 500 companies. He had lot’s of experience in business, but when he made the jump to franchising, it meant learning a whole new skillset.

In this episode of Small Business Edge Damon shares his story of learning how to succeed as an entrepreneur, overcoming obstacles, and growing from one location to multiple locations with multiple concepts.

Discussed in this episode:

  • What is Amazing Lash Studio?
  • Damon’s start in franchise entrepreneurship
  • Obstacles as a new franchise owner
  • Creating Multiple Income Streams
  • The importance of focusing on what you do best
  • How to invest your time
Mar 23, 2017

Joe Burum and Randy Merrill know what it takes to succeed as a franchisee. They have extensive experience running franchises and breaking launch records with new stores.

After repeated success they found themselves spending almost as much time helping new franchise owners as they were managing their businesses. They realized they were onto something and started GO Launch Pros.

GO Launch Pros helps The Joint, Massage Heights, and Amazing Lash Studios franchisees start up and succeed by providing strategy, coaching, and support through the launch of new locations.

Joe and Randy have seen what makes new franchisees successful. On this episode, they share their story and wisdom on successfully launching a franchise from lease negotiations, marketing, hiring, and more.

You can find out more at golaunchpros.com

Discussed in this episode:

  • The shift from operating to consulting
  • Breaking launch records
  • How to get buy in from employees at a new location
  • Why young people are missing career opportunities
  • What are new franchise owners most naive about
  • Is franchise ownership for everyone?
  • The reality of “turnkey” franchises
  • What pushes them to continue growing after success in business and consulting
Mar 16, 2017

This week on Small Business Edge, T.K. is joined by Jamie Weeks. Jamie is President of Honors Holdings which owns and operates more than twelve Orangetheory Fitness locations across the US.

Jamie’s move into the franchise world started three years ago when an Orangetheory Fitness location opened near his home. He went for a workout on a Tuesday and left the studio knowing Orangetheory had figured out something important. Two days later he owned three franchise locations.

Along with his partner, Jamie has seen rapid growth with their Orangetheory locations and will be operating twenty by the end of the year.

Jamie and TK discuss what makes Orangetheory Fitness unique and one of the fastest growing franchises in the US.

Discussed in this episode:

  • Starting in franchise entrepreneurship
  • What makes Orangetheory Fitness special?
  • The commonalities between fitness and finance
  • Who is Orangetheory Fitness for?
  • The importance of work ethic for entrepreneurs
  • Leadership supporting employees
  • How can young people develop work ethic?
Mar 9, 2017

Chad Walldorf had just graduated college when he and two high school friends decided to open a restaurant. With little prior experience, they created the first Sticky Fingers restaurant in Mount Pleasant, SC and grew it from one restaurant to sixteen locations with one thousand employees across five states just fifteen years later.

The three founders started without much experience, but constantly learned and grew as the business developed. Along the way, Chad and his partners exemplified the eagerness to learn and the drive required to succeed as an entrepreneur.

On this episode, Chad tells his story of starting and growing a successful restaurant chain with two close friends. He shares about why they decided to sell and his offers his lessons learned about what it takes to succeed as a leader, manager, and entrepreneur while growing a thriving business.

Covered in this episode:

  • The origin story of Sticky Fingers
  • Starting a restaurant with no prior experience
  • Learning by doing as an entrepreneur
  • Working with friends
  • The advantage of being young and naive
  • Growing from one to sixteen locations
  • When is the right time to sell?
  • How do you create great company culture?
  • How do you hire great people?
  • What do most franchisees and entrepreneurs need to know, but don’t know
Mar 2, 2017

Ron DaVella is the CFO of Amazing Lash Studio and an Amazing Lash franchise owner. He joins to show to share his story and lessons from a career in accounting and making the transition to the franchise world.

When Ron retired from his career as an audit partner at Deloitte and set out to start a business, his plan was to start a restaurant. But a position on the board of The Joint Chiropractic introduced him to the franchise world and eventually to Amazing Lash Studio.

Alongside his wife, he fell in love with the Amazing Lash concept. The first class experience and subscription model business for eyelash extensions they had created. So they bought in and opened a location.

Along the way, Ron got to know the team at Amazing Brands and was offered a position with the franchisor. A few months later, when Amazing Brands took over management of Amazing Lash Ron become COO and then CFO.

Ron’s story of entering the franchise world is unique, but the lessons he has learned from decades of experience provide learning material for all of us. From decades in accounting, from working as CFO at Amazing Lash, and from owning his own location, Ron has seen what makes a business successful in the long run, and what will tear it apart.

Topics Covered in this Episode:

  • Ron’s experience working with Franchises at Deloitte
  • Making the jump to the franchise world
  • The roundabout path to opening an Amazing Lash location
  • What makes Amazing Lash unique and a great business opportunity?
  • Navigating the transition from accounting to entrepreneurship
  • The importance of a great team
  • What do you look for when hiring great employees?
  • How important is passion?
  • Handling challenges without losing your cool
Feb 23, 2017

Charles Fisher is a serial entrepreneur who alongside his wife, owns and operates twenty-two franchises across four different brands (Massage Envy, European Wax Center, The Joint and Cricket Wireless).

Charles followed a unique and inspiring path to find massive success as a franchise entrepreneur. He shares the entrepreneurial lessons he learned from his time in the Navy and the most important factors in his business success today.  

Topics Discussed:

  • Business and life lessons you learn in the Navy
  • Growing from two to twenty stores
  • Starting with Massage envy
  • Deciding to go back to school for an MBA
  • His new organization Dream to Serve

Links:

Feb 23, 2017

With the rise of outsourcing jobs overseas, automating jobs, and rapid advancements in technology making certain industries obsolete, many people feel helpless in their careers.

Terri Jacques, a prolific Massage Envy franchisee, knew that her job in IT would someday be outsourced and decided to go into franchising to build her own career and her own life.

Terri went from struggling to get a SMB loan to now having 100+ employees, and is going on four (extremely successful) franchise locations.

In this episode of Small Business Edge, Terri talks us through her path to franchise entrepreneurship, the difficulties she had to overcome, and the period of her life when she worked 100-hour workweeks.

Topics Discussed:

  • Terri’s start with Massage Envy
  • Managing a full time job with two franchise locations
  • The best parts of being a franchise owner
  • The importance of great employees
  • The most fulfilling parts of entrepreneurship
  • Responsibilities of owning a business

Links:

Feb 22, 2017

We are excited to introduce you to Small Business Edge.

In the sea of entrepreneurship content for startups and solopreneurs, small business entrepreneurs are sometimes overlooked. As a result, they often don’t have the support and knowledge to grow and prosper in their business. Small Business Edge exists to share the stories and wisdom of successful small business entrepreneurs.

In this episode Ceterus CEO Levi Morehouse joins the show to discuss how Small Business Edge and Ceterus help to empower small business entrepreneurs, and what you can expect from future episodes of the Small Business Edge Podcast.

Topics Discussed:

  • Why Small Business Edge exists
  • How Levi became passionate about empowering small business owners
  • How does Ceterus help small business owners?
  • What are the most common struggles small business owners have?
  • How can you get the most out of the podcast?

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