bannerFranchise News

Franchisee Success Stories and Lessons Learned

From painting homes to gifting moments and caring for transitions, three entrepreneurs share their journeys to success within their chosen franchises, offering lessons learned along the way.

In the world of franchising, where dreams and business intersect, there is no shortage of success stories that showcase the spirit of entrepreneurship, resilience and personal fulfillment. Though the journey may not always follow a straight path, these three franchisee tales reveal crucial lessons and effective strategies that can pave the way for fellow business owners' success. 

Painting a Path to Freedom: Roger Burgin's Journey with Fresh Coat*

Roger Burgin, leveraging his vast experience in commercial real estate, embarked on a franchising adventure with Fresh Coat Painters, aiming not just for financial gain but for a lifestyle of freedom.

“My mission is to enjoy enough recurring revenue that I can travel the country in an RV with my dogs and not worry about money,” Burgin told 1851 Franchise. “It's not about making millions of dollars; it's about enjoying a lifestyle. When I look at my parents, they worked a lot and retired but still struggled to enjoy life and pay bills. I want to be able to work hard so I can enjoy life and do what I love.”

Similarly, Burgin knew the only way to achieve his dream was to invest in something scalable, setting a goal to open at least three territories of whatever franchise he chose. Soon, he came across Fresh Coat Painters, the industry-leading residential and commercial painting franchise with over 170 units.

"What set Fresh Coat apart for me was its compatibility with my skills,” said Burgin. “I'm not a painter, but I knew if I could bring my marketing expertise, I could grow the business. I wanted to manage this as a business, not as a painter. I knew I could take this and expand our market reach and our customer base by providing great service.”

In 2023, Burgin officially purchased his first Fresh Coat franchise in Boise, Idaho. Now, he plans to open two additional territories — Twin Falls and Nampa — and eventually expand to cover the entire state of Idaho and branch off into Oregon.

“I grew up as one of 10 kids in Tennessee, and we grew up very humble,” said Burgin. “To come from that kind of environment and find myself running billion dollar companies and now owning my own company, it's an achievement that I am very proud of.”

Crafting Emotions into Business: Anita Bustos and Edible Arrangements

Anita Bustos, a Chicago-based franchise owner with Edible, the specialty retail and gifting franchise, is another inspiring franchisee success story. 

“My story started as a very young mom when I was working for the Chicago public library as an intern,” Bustos told 1851. “During that time, I kind of applied for a job at Edible by accident and found myself bouncing around a couple of stores in various roles.” 

Over the years, her roles within Edible evolved, eventually leading her to manage, and subsequently own, a store in North Chicago, becoming a beacon of success in the Edible franchise network.

“I really love the brand so much — we sell emotion, not just fruit baskets,” said Bustos. “Just today I had an order from a mother in Florida whose twin daughters live here and are turning 40. She’s so sad — it's the first birthday she’s spending without them — so she asked me to make it extra special. I just love what we do. We are offering something much more personal than just a gift.”

This philosophy became particularly poignant during the COVID-19 pandemic when her store became a vital link between separated families. Under her leadership, the Chicago store thrived, becoming one of the top performers in annual sales within the Edible network. This success stems not only from her business acumen but from her genuine commitment to going the extra mile for every customer, ensuring that every gift sent from her store carries a personal touch and fosters a connection.

“We go the extra mile for everyone who walks through the door,” said Bustos. “We listen to the occasion — the client is always right and we want to make it special. Everyone who works here has been here for over 10 years and we have a very family-run business — my brother does deliveries, my cousin is my manager. We do whatever it takes to get it done.”

And the results speak for themselves — her store is one of the top-performers when it comes to annual sales and she was recently named Edible’s Franchisee of the Year in 2023. 

A Legacy of Care: Robert Alley's Mission with Caring Transitions

Robert Alley's venture into owning a Caring Transitions franchise is a heartfelt continuation of a family legacy steeped in care and empathy. 

"My mother established several assisted living facilities,” Alley told 1851 Franchise. “Growing up in that environment and observing her compassionate care for individuals, many of whom lacked family support, instilled in me a profound sense of empathy.”

Following an established career in the assisted living field, the COVID-19 pandemic served as a catalyst for Alley to reevaluate his life goals and embrace his true passions. This eventually led him to Caring Transitions, a franchise specializing in estate sales, downsizing and relocation services for seniors.

“In 2022, I decided to semi-retire so I could focus on pursuing my true passions,” said Alley. “One of those passions was providing care to people who needed help.”

Since opening Caring Transitions of Huntsville, Alabama, in 2023, Alley has found profound fulfillment in serving as a beacon of support for seniors navigating life’s transitions. His approach to business transcends mere service delivery, embodying a mission to offer guidance, empathy and a sense of stability to those in need.

“I never understood the phrase: ‘Do what you love and it will never feel like work.’ But I can say that I fully understand that now,” said Alley. “I left the safe keepings of a great career to start a business and all of the challenges that come along with it. But I haven’t had a single day of stress. If you find that thing you are passionate about, you will never work another day in your life. I’m living that dream.”

Lessons Learned

The journeys of Burgin, Bustos, and Alley — though distinct — converge on common themes central to franchising success:

  • Passion and Purpose: Success in franchising transcends financial goals; it's deeply intertwined with personal passion and purpose.
  • Customer Connection: Building a business that touches lives, whether through enhancing homes, crafting memorable gifts or assisting in life's transitions, creates lasting success.
  • Resilience and Adaptability: Choosing industries with resilience to economic fluctuations and being adaptable to challenges are crucial strategies.
  • Community and Teamwork: The strength of a franchise often lies in the community it builds and the team that feels like family.
  • Scalability and Growth: A vision for scalability and growth, whether through expanding territories or diversifying services, is fundamental to long-term achievement.

Aspiring entrepreneurs can draw more inspiration from our franchisee feature stories here.

*This brand is a paid partner of 1851 Franchise. For more information on paid partnerships please click here.