As the owner of a mediation company, Kyle Timmons always had a need for shared office space in his business’ daily workings. When he was eventually introduced to Office Evolution, his experience prompted him to recognize the brand’s distinguished environment and culture, leading first to membership and ultimately to franchise ownership.
Timmons worked for both large corporations and small businesses post-college before turning to entrepreneurship. The last 20 years of his career were spent in mediation, working through litigation, EEO disputes and divorce and child custody cases in the Denver area, where he became familiar with Office Evolution’s offering as a member. “The support and structure of the business center always made me feel comfortable,” Timmons said. He spent the next several years as happy customer before getting the itch to pursue something more.
“At a certain point, I decided I needed to move on,” Timmons said. “I enjoyed my work and helping people, but I wanted something different. Then one day, [Office Evolution founder and CEO] Mark Hemmeter knocked on my door to ask me about my experience and how everything was going. I was so impressed by him that I started to form a new idea about what was next for me as I got older and moved into retirement,” Timmons added.
After the conversation with Hemmeter, Timmons learned that his friend, Scott Baroway, was an Office Evolution franchisee. “Both Scott and Mark had tons to say about the benefits of the business. Our conversations led me to realize the franchise opportunity was one where I could continue to help people with the added element of applying my business experience,” Timmons said.
Further investigation led Timmons to sign on as an Office Evolution franchisee in March of 2016. The move would bring him to Phoenix, Arizona, a market chosen based on demographic heat maps and the structure of the Office Evolution business model. “Phoenix was the perfect place for Kyle to open his business center because there was tons of opportunity in the small business community,” said Office Evolution founder and CEO Mark Hemmeter. “It was a market we had yet to enter that could really benefit from our services.”
Timmons said the ongoing support Office Evolution provided throughout the development process was a huge help. “We spent a lot of time collaborating on different aspects of development from location selection, to lease negotiation, to understanding our bottom line. No matter what, there’s people in roles supportive of you. They made it fun to figure out,” Timmons said.
Timmons built Office Evolution’s client base in Phoenix through grassroots marketing and joining chambers of commerce, networking groups, and any community organizations he could find with the help of his Business Center Manager, Rebecca Alden. “Going to as many meetings as possible to tell people what Office Evolution is all about helped draw 170 people to our grand opening,” he said.
His experience as a client has benefited Timmons with owning an Office Evolution franchise in a number of ways. “When we developed our site in Phoenix, I constantly referenced my experience and what was important to me as a member, from layout and services down to noise levels,” Timmons said. “Being a member also really impressed upon me how critical hiring a good Business Center Manager is to our success. I took that all into consideration to make it as welcoming, functional, and professional a place as possible,” he added.
Timmons said his favorite part of owning an Office Evolution franchise is the level of responsibility he has and the amount of time he has spent learning. “Working cooperatively with my Business Center Manager to make sure our location is successful by interacting with customers and maintaining visibility and communication has been a great opportunity,” Timmons said.
“Franchise ownership has been an education, but I've learned so much and all of it’s good,” he said. “It’s a process, but every unknown is something you can learn by asking questions. Office Evolution has been there with that constant support, educating me at every step,” Timmons added.