VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Aug. 9, 2011) - With many corporations still inflexible to family demands, Canadian moms are striking out on their own in unprecedented numbers. Bolstered by an energetic online community and changing job market, mompreneurs are popping up all over the nation. According to Alison Konrad, professor of organizational behavior at the University of Western Ontario, many organizations don't do enough to help women maintain a connection with their careers during times when they have heavy family responsibilities. In her survey of Canadian companies, only 43% of respondents offered flexible work scheduling to employees, even fewer (35%) offered reduced work hours, and a mere 19% allowed for working at home.
Up until Monique had her third child, she worked for many years at WorkSafeBC (formally B.C. Workers' Compensation Board). It was here that she developed the skills in customer service that would later help her build her business as a franchisee. For Monique Widing, the latest addition to the Clancy's Meat Co. family of franchisees, mompreneurship was a no-brainer when brother-in-law (and fellow Clancy's Meat Co. franchisee) Miles, introduced her to Clancy's CEO, Paul Monger and with that introduced the idea of becoming a franchise business owner.
Just under a year after Widing and her husband first met with Monger and toured some of the keynote locations in the Lower Mainland, Widing recognized that Clancy's – with its wide range of products specially selected to service busy families searching for value, taste and healthy options – was just the ticket, and decided to open up a store in West Kelowna. As a Clancy's Meat Co. franchisee and new business owner, the mother of three, who devoted the last eight years to being a stay-at-home mom, has traded in her day-to-day routine of transporting kids to dance and soccer practice, to planning the construction of the new store and getting to intimately know the range of products.
"I really appreciated Clancy's unique franchise concept," says Widing. "It allowed me the flexibility to juggle my career and family obligations – all while owning and operating a business that I'm passionate about, with products that I'm proud to serve to my family and my customers' families."
Monique's advice for new franchisees?
•Pick a franchise with a strong support system in place for new franchisees
•Choose a franchise opportunity with a product you feel great about selling
•Embrace the whole experience by getting to know what your customers REALLY want