We had first shined the spotlight on our Franchise Partner, Imelda Wright, back in 2017 when she first became the proud owner of Nurse Next Door Kelowna and Vernon. She had been a Registered Nurse for over two decades and decided to embark on an entrepreneurial journey. We then highlighted her amazing efforts of community outreach. Today we connect with her to see how community, family and other aspects of life come into play when running a home care franchise!
Tell us a bit more about your location, Kelowna
I moved to Kelowna in 2017 and I absolutely love it here. The landscapes are a dream! It’s like the Tuscany of British Columbia. It’s got rolling hills, lakes and lots of wineries and lakes—it’s just gorgeous!
It’s a beautiful city, a resort city where lots of people chose to live out retired life. A majority of the population are seniors. I have several clients from Alberta that have chosen to retire in Kelowna because of what this beautiful city has to offer: tons of activities, art, music festivals and events like theatre under the stars where people of all ages can enjoy.
On the other hand, Kelowna is also a college town! There’s a UBC campus as well, so it’s a perfect balance of people from all walks of life.
What Else Imelda Has Been Up To
I’ve become part of the Nurse Next Door family since July 2017. I’m the new owner of Nurse Next Door Kelowna, we’ve got new management and so the main objectives of my hustle are to connect with previous clients, staff and create rapport among the community.
I’m doing more in the community, attending various community events, with the goal of being present and showing, “Hey, we’re here” in our bold pink shirts.
This July, we participated in the Fat Cat festival, which is geared towards children and family. We set up a booth with a game where kids and adults could take turns putting on blindfolds and trying to pin a cloth heart on our cardboard cutout patient. Everyone got pink sprinkled cookies after the game. My Care Team thoroughly enjoyed it because it was a very organic, fun and friendly way to introduce ourselves to families in Kelowna without being “sales-y”. The awesome thing was—we ran out of cookies to hand out!
Aside from community events, I’m also a member of Kelowna’s Chamber of Commerce and it really helps with getting to know other small business owners in the area, expanding my network. Speaking of networking, I also frequent the two hospitals in my territory: Vernon Jubilee and Kelowna General. It’s about getting back to the basics and introducing myself and my business to medical professionals. By presenting the benefits of home care to patients post-discharge and what Nurse Next Door does differently (Happier Aging), we often receive professional referrals from doctors, Occupational Therapists and Physical Therapists.
When I first started out, my daughter helped me out but she had to go back to University. Then my eldest son stepped in to help with payroll, HR and computer training. Recently he had to go to university as well, so now, my youngest son—he doesn’t work for the business, but he helps out with my “parketing”!
Nurse Next Door’s brand is known for our boldly pink cars with our logo flower-hearts print all over them. “Parketing” is when we go to a popular location and park our car there to ensure optimized presence. I’d like to think of my pink car as a moving billboard. I will drive for about 1 hour or 45 minutes from Kelowna to Vernon to get our brand out there. My son will sit shotgun and we can sing along to the radio or chat. It’s a win-win situation, I’m successfully getting more eyes on my business while enjoying some quality mother and son time!
Advice for Potential Franchise Partners
My advice to people who are interested in owning a Nurse Next Door franchise?
Be prepared to do the work. It’s a lot of work, but it’s rewarding work. When I meet a potential client and their family face to face at a Caring Consult, I get to listen to their stories. I tell them the range of services Nurse Next Door can provide to assist them—even alleviate some stress. You see the relief on their faces. It’s like, “Wow, someone understands my family’s situation and that help is on the way”. I find it to be instant gratification. It’s a truly amazing feeling to be able to make lives better in the work I do every single day!
We’re looking for entrepreneurs to join us to make even more lives better.
Learn more about our Franchising Opportunity today!