I started working professionally with at-risk young adults in 1987. I landed my first business consulting work with a company called word perfect in 1994.
Sarah was not my first motivator for life coaching. But, when I watched my own daughter go through a rough patch in her late teenage years, it deepened my passion and resolve to coach young adults into real life.
Sarah is my oldest daughter. During her junior and senior years of high school, she was doing fine in some ways but also making some poor choices in other ways.
Just before her 18th birthday, Sarah walked up with her boyfriend and said, “Dad, I’m pregnant.”
But, when I watched my own daughter go through a rough patch in her late teenage years, it deepened my passion and resolve to coach young adults into real life.
Sarah decided she wanted to get married to Ben. While I was a concerned father at the time, seeing the two of them together years later is proof that she made a great decision!
Sarah and Ben asked if they could rent my basement apartment as the current tenant was moving out. I asked Sarah if this was a daddy deal or a business deal. She very quickly said this is a business deal. I said great. $500 due at the first of the month and 30-day notification to vacate. She was never late with her rent.
I asked her later why she wanted to rent from me instead of being out on her own. She openly admitted that she didn’t want to stroke my ego as her dad but she knew she wanted to be near me.
In the months that followed, Sarah came to me and asked, “Can you do that coaching thing with me like you do with other people?”
“Can you do that coaching thing with me like you do with other people?”
I told her no, I just wanted to be her father. She insisted she would be a good student. To be honest, I never coached Sarah. I just asked her motivational interviewing type questions, which over time lead her to her own answers. And, a few years later, Sarah and Ben found their own business/life coaches named Hal and Ann.
Here is the point.
“Sarah went from being the girl that I would fight with to go to school and obey curfews to a person of passion that you couldn’t slow down. As a parent, I did what any parent would do. Boundaries. Rules. Teaching. Love. But the day that Sarah replaced her existing reality with a new reality, all I did was guide the process!”
Sarah needed income that also allowed her to reach her goal of being a stay at home mother. She was determined to not put her child in daycare. And, she was determined not to be financially dependent on her parents.
Sarah decided to start her own business. It turns out that all those years of listening to her father on phone calls and in staff meetings, she was paying attention. Much more than I would have ever guessed. Our children are always watching us.
Sarah started Impressions Pre-School.
She quickly learned that being the dumbest person in the room as a leader is actually the smartest thing you can do. She learned how to hire the right people on her team.
She spent time learning curriculum development. Like most entrepreneurs, she knew enough to get started and kept learning and adapting on a daily basis while she wrote and created her own specific brand of the curriculum.
We were able to set up a job shadowing experience with the CEO of the largest pre-school groups in Texas. Learning from others combined with hard work was a major key to her success.
Sarah expanded her pre-school to three locations from the age of 18 to 21.
Three years later, Sarah called me up and asked, “Dad, I’m bored with the preschool. How do I sell a preschool? I laughed and told her how my industry works on percentages of EBITDA because a preschool is a service-based industry. But, I did not know how to find a buyer for a preschool.
Six weeks later, Sarah called and said she had a cash offer for her preschool. She told me the terms of the deal and asked what she should do. I just said, take the deal.
As a funny side note, if you look up http://impressionspreschools.com/ and see the phone number 801.859.6069, that was Sarah’s phone number all throughout high school. Sarah had to give up her cell phone number as part of closing the deal.
Today, Sarah and Ben own two other businesses and make six-figure incomes. They enjoy saving money, traveling, working on business together as husband and wife, raising their kids, attending their church, public speaking, and coaching other business owners.