Window Genie's oftentimes a family business... we have a number of husband/wife duos, kids working for their parents in the office or out cleaning windows... but for the first time ever we have a father/son duo where the son's the boss! Charlie Caravello, 37 purchased a Window Genie franchise earlier this summer and hired his dad Chuck, 65 as his first employee. Starting a business can be scary. Having his father on his side, supporting his decision and being there while he ramps up has given Charlie the extra support most small business owners wish they had.
Before joining the Window Genie team, Caravello spent approximately 15 years in medical sales calling directly on hospitals. "In any sales career you go through peaks and valleys. For the last few years, every time I dipped into a valley I felt I wasn't in control of my success so I would consider looking into business ownership. I never got completely serious about it until this past winter because I think ultimately, I wasn't ready mentally or financially until now," Caravello said. "I did my homework and landed on a few service oriented, low investment companies to evaluate. Window Genie caught my eye when I noticed it was ranked on Franchise Business Review's list of top franchises for franchise owner satisfaction."
Caravello reached out to Window Genie and began a validation process, speaking with the corporate support staff as well as current Window Genie franchisees. "I just felt like 'wow these guys have their act together' when speaking to everyone at Window Genie throughout my process; you could feel the professionalism was consistent and trickled down to the whole system. Because I had been doing research on business ownership for the last few years I felt I had a grasp on what I wanted and did not want out of a franchising opportunity, and I never saw a red flag with Window Genie. It got to a point where I'd wake up every day more excited with my to-do list for Window Genie than my current job. I knew I'd found something that would keep me motivated, excited and therefore successful every day."
Caravello's first employee is his own father, Chuck Caravello. "My parents were both incredibly supportive when I went to them for advice on purchasing a franchise. There's always a fear or anxiety when taking a chance like opening a business, but having my father on board definitely helps. I know that off the bat I have an employee I completely trust, he'll be great with customers and down the road when he's sick of cleaning windows he'll know the business as well as I and can help me in the office and with training future employees." The Caravellos are excited. Charlie said, "I'm most excited to just get out there, be able to monitor my own results, take responsibility for my success and continue to build the business. I know I'll be wearing many hats but for someone who gets bored with a one dimensional job, that's exactly what I want. I know I've found what I was looking for in Window Genie."
Team Louisville was recently featured in Franchise Times: click here for the full article
Charlie Caravello’s biggest challenge of being his dad’s boss is adjusting to the “role
reversal.” After all, Charlie spent his entire life looking up to his father and learning and taking advice from him.
The son hired dad, Chuck, as his first technician at a Window Genie franchise he bought with his own money in Louisville for about $125,000. Caravello is 37 and his father is 65. Chuck came out of retirement because of the unique opportunity to help his son in his new business venture.
Many reasons make Caravello feel fortunate to work with his father at the franchise he opened in May 2014: He’s reliable, trustworthy, supportive and capable of helping run the office if needed to do so. Still, Caravello admits, “it will take some getting used to” telling his father what to do.
David Flax’s fall from exec recruiting to window washing was a crash course on resilience, happiness and what really matters
The full story can be found online at Life Re-imagined
READ THAT STORY. We’re so incredibly lucky to have this dynamic husband/wife duo on TEAM GENIE: David and Jen Flax. They’ve been through “heaven, hell and beyond” together. Losing their business and then ultimately their home after the market crashed, these two were forced to create a new path to success for their family.
Their story is not unlike what many Americans were experiencing just a few years ago. What set these two apart was their strength and willingness to do what it took to be successful and happy. They spent the last of their savings to open a Window Genie franchise and haven’t looked back. They believed in the system, believed in themselves and are now Window Genie’s fastest growing franchise.
Through this story we’re reminded why we love franchising. At Window Genie we believe we offer a unique opportunity for entrepreneurs. Our proven system, executive model and marketing driven business approach makes success as a Window Genie franchise owner possible to nearly anyone. It doesn’t matter where you come from or what you’ve done, success as a business owner is attainable by anyone with a passion to persevere.
We’re proud of you guys!
Robin McKenna of Central, NJ
Robin McKenna, new Window Genie franchise owner in Central New Jersey has a special, emotional story about her journey to business ownership. Robin was laid off from her job of 20 years but was able to see past the negative and truly embrace the unfortunate situation as a “blessing in disguise.”
Her story is very representative of the way many individuals become business owners. The Window Genie story is one that’s full of entrepreneurs who didn’t actualize their dream of business ownership until forced to make a choice. Their choices were between taking a chance and opening a business… or sticking to what they were comfortable doing, even if that meant being under-appreciated, over-worked and under-paid. We’re proud of the individuals that make up TEAM GENIE because they all had the guts to follow their dreams, take control of their own success and find happiness.
Below is a media announcement that was released about Robin’s grand opening. It details the circumstances leading up to her choice to purchase a Window Genie franchise. She, like so many before her, just needed a little push in the right direction. She’s now able to spend more time with family while still working hard and making a living that she’s proud of. She is the boss!
New business owner says layoff was a blessing, I have my life back
Robin McKenna, owner of Window Genie of Central NJ, says business ownership has given her the freedom to create her own schedule, be in control of her success and have the work-life balance she missed in her previous career.
Cincinnati, OH – Window Genie announces the grand opening of their newest location in Princeton, NJ on Monday March 17th. Robin McKenna is the owner/operator. Window Genie is a nationally ranked home services franchise offering window cleaning, window tinting, pressure washing, gutter cleaning and much more. Window Genie of Central NJ and Bucks County, PA will service the Princeton area and surrounding communities, as well as Bucks County, PA. A ribbon cutting ceremony will take place on Tuesday March 18th at 5:00pm at the Princeton Chamber of Commerce at 182 Nassau St. Suite #301 in Princeton. All are welcome to attend.
Before joining the Window Genie team, McKenna spent 20 years at a medical device company in sales and marketing, more recently in global marketing developing and commercializing products worldwide. In July 2012 her position was eliminated. McKenna said, “I did what most people do after a layoff. I looked for a similar job because it’s what I was used to. I knew in my heart that I could not go back and feel secure or happy, though.” After some time off, McKenna realized the “blessing in disguise” she was granted by being unemployed. “I had always wanted to be home more while my children were in high school and my daughter was a sophomore and my son was in 6th grade at the time. Also, unfortunately my parents were having some health issues. I was granted this wish I had always had in the back of my mind to be home spending time with family. My mom would bring my dad to my house on her way to work to spend time with me and attend my children’s swim meets and other functions; it was truly a blessing to spend the precious time together as I decided what to do next.” McKenna was able to take away a piece of advice from her father before he passed away. He told her, “Take your passions and put them to work for yourself.” McKenna said, “His words and support really meant something to me. It helped me realize that it’s all about family, quality of life and working for you because the return is based on your efforts and decisions.”
McKenna stopped looking for another corporate job in June 2013 and began focusing solely on business ownership with her franchise coach, Bill McGuire of The Entrepreneur’s Source. “I began looking around online at business opportunities in late 2012 and must have left a cookie somewhere because I was approached by Bill. If he hadn’t contacted me, I don’t know where I would be now. His guidance was so essential to getting me where I am today at Window Genie.” They discussed McKenna’s strengths, weaknesses, goals and interests to determine which business models would fit her best. Window Genie was one of them and, “shined amongst all others from the get-go,” says McKenna. What stood out to McKenna about the Window Genie business was the ability to offer multiple services to repeat customers. She said, “This would give me an opportunity to build relationships in the community and continue to serve that customer for years. Also, with the many different services Window Genie offers, there’s something for every home and every budget; I like that. Window Genie’s strong culture and give-back program, Windows 4 Wishes stood out to McKenna. She said, “The corporate team has such a strong, well defined culture. It’s something I’ll be sure I reflect in my business. When I hire a technician I’ll let them know that we work hard and we play hard, we contribute to our community and take pride in our work, values that were instilled in me by my mom and dad. These were values so clearly embedded in the Window Genie culture and I felt it just even talking to existing franchise partners during my discovery process. Everyone I talked to had such fantastic things to say about the business and the corporate team. It feels good to invest in team Genie; it’s an extended family that not only cares about the success of my business but the happiness and fulfillment it brings me.”
Window Genie located in Princeton, NJ officially opens for business on Monday March 17th. McKenna is excited, saying, “I can’t wait to get back to work and be able to provide people with things they really need and help improve the homes in my area. I’m providing jobs to people in my community and helping them build skills they can use in the future. I’m a planner and organizer so I feel prepared to take on the spring cleaning season after all the snow we’ve had and also being very customer oriented, I’m excited to just get out there and start building relationships based on professionalism and quality. Two years ago I was unhappy and felt stuck in the corporate world. Being laid off was a blessing that led me to Window Genie. I have my life back and control of my own destiny.” For more information about Window Genie of Central NJ and Bucks County PA, please contact Robin McKenna at 609-917-4338 or [email protected] To speak to Bill McGuire of The Entrepreneur’s Source about franchise opportunities, call 812-284-4665About Robin McKenna: Robin McKenna is a local born and bred Central New Jerseyan; she was born in Bucks County, PA and lived in Hamilton Township, NJ during the earlier part of her life until moving to Lawrenceville, NJ and calling that home until she married. She attended Rider University where she received both her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree. Most of Robin’s family where born, raised and still reside in Central New Jersey and Bucks County, PA. Her mother, Harriet Hendricks Cook was born in Bucks County, PA and now a resident in her birth state. Her father, Robert Edward Cook was born in Mercer County NJ and was an inspiration to her starting her own business before his passing last year. Currently residing in Belle Meade, NJ, McKenna is now a proud small business owner servicing the communities she loves to call home. McKenna has been very involved in the community, serving as a Girl Scout Leader, United Way Day of Caring organizer, and a member of the Somerset Valley YMCA parent board and parent volunteer. She plans to get her business involved in giving back to the community.
This fantastic article from The Walton Tribune in the greater Atlanta area describes Dow Lively's journey to business ownership. Dow officially opened Window Genie of Loganville on Monday February 24th. We're excited to have him on TEAM GENIE - Congrats, Dow!
Posted: Wednesday, March 5, 2014 12:00 am
By: Raquel Willis
Loganville local Dow Lively is looking to make a clean sweep after the opening of his incarnation of Window Genie on Feb. 24.
The franchise offers specialized home services such as window and gutter cleaning, window tinting, pressure washing and cleaning.
With an atypical road to business ownership, Lively’s interest in the franchise developed after being laid off from his previous job in August 2013.
“Over a period of a couple months, nothing was happening so I got rather frustrated with that. I started to examine the franchise world and I got in touch with a coach for franchises,” Lively said. “I happened to get one that was very good. He asked some questions. I had to do a personality profile. He started suggesting different franchises I could probably fit into with my background and personality.”
It took a month, but after examining the benefits that Window Genie could provide to Loganville, he finalized plans and decided to go into the home service industry.
“Window Genie always stood out for its simplicity. I wanted something that wasn’t high tech, had low overhead and would connect me to the community,” Lively said. “Also, being able to offer a variety of services to fit every home’s needs and budget is great.”
Window Genie’s appeal also came with a high rating by his coach and an increased rating through Forbes Magazine over the past decade.
“I felt good that this was something I had a chance at succeeding at,” Lively said.
His confidence stemmed from his 18 years of experience working in construction, sales and management. Many of the same principles that he learned in that line of work spills over into business ownership and his plans for the franchise.
“For me to be a successful salesperson, I have to believe in the product, I have to deliver the product and you have to be able to talk to people with a straight face to sell the product,” Lively said. “Sales techniques are pretty much standard in any industry, but you’ve got to have a style for whatever it is that you’re selling. Over a period of years, I guess I’ve learned enough and developed a style of sales.”
The past month has been focused around training from corporate officials and making sure that Lively is set with a proper foundation for the business.
“I got to hear from the guys in the system what worked, how they felt about the potential of their business and it helped me make my decision‚“ said Lively. “After I left my week of training at the corporate office in Cincinnati I felt very comfortable with the decision I made. This will be a challenge but that’s what makes it exciting. I just want to get out there and see what I’m made of.”
Their first week revolved around getting their name out in the community and figuring out the preliminary concerns that all businesses have in the beginning.
“We are getting more calls already this week, but it’s going to take a while to get the name recognition and proper advertising,” Lively said.
The existence of this service in Loganville represents a situation in which customers won’t have to travel miles for more specialized services. There’s a convenience that Window Genie is trying to foster.
“(Locals) have a window service company right here in town and they don’t have to go all the way to Atlanta or Athens. We just want to do a lot of work locally,” Lively said. “I’ve always worked with national contractors and all over the southeast, but now I’m finally figuring out what the community is and where it is.”
For more information contact Dow Lively at [email protected] or 770-680-7844.
What makes Window Genie a great opportunity for young entrepreneurs today?
Window Genie has been experiencing record growth this year. We're all about creating opportunities for determined entrepreneurs who are looking to take control of their own success and be their own boss. Window Genie has proved to be a fantastic option for entrepreneurs today, especially young entrepreneurs. For example, we recently awarded a franchise to Matthew Johnson of Kansas City, MO. He's just 27 years old, our youngest franchise partner ever! About buying a Window Genie franchise, Matthew said, "I knew as a first time business owner that franchising was the best option for me. I was looking to join a system that would offer someone like me exceptional support. I'm also looking to continue to grow and build something I can have for years to come." Although most of our owners are young at heart, young means 35 years old or younger in this case. About 20% of Window Genie's franchise owners either are, or were under 35 when they purchased their business. What is it about Window Genie that has young entrepreneurs excited?
Window Genie was recently featured in the October 3rd issue of USA Today in an article titled Franchisors Target Young, Ambitious Franchisees. In it, Window Genie Founder and CEO, Rik Nonelle explains why franchising in general is a good option for young people, “Young people today are facing tough job market with limited opportunities to reach their full potential. Owning a franchise offers those in their 20s and 30s a chance to take control and determine their own success. Instead of an entry level job working for ‘the man’ they can start at the top as their own boss.”
Rik knows firsthand what it’s like to start a business young; he started Window Genie in Cincinnati, OH as a local window cleaning business when he was only 29. In the USA Today article he also says, “What we love about young entrepreneurs is that they keep an open mind, accept guidance and have the energy and drive to really make things happen. We’re a great fit for young franchisees because we’re affordable and our owners can work from home, which requires a lower initial investment and allows our franchise owners to focus on growing their business.”
As we continue to grow, Window Genie encourages young entrepreneurs to learn about the Window Genie opportunity. Owning a Window Genie franchise allows for long-term sustainable growth; our franchise agreement defines a term as 10 years in business. Window Genie has always been committed to maintaining a strong, reliable, supportive system for franchisees to follow. Window Genie was ranked #44 overall for franchisee satisfaction by Franchise Business Review. We were ranked #4 in our category (mid size franchise). We strive for longevity in the business, and to deliver the happiness and success factors our owners were seeking when they decided to purchase a franchise.
To learn more about how to BE YOUR OWN BOSS visit the Window Genie online virtual brochure at windowgeniefranchise.com
What makes a good franchisee?
2013 is looking like it’s going to be Window Genie’s biggest, best year. So far in 2013, we have 10 new Window Genie owners coming on board scheduled to grand open this winter and spring. In an interview with The Franchise King, Joel Libava, Window Genie CEO, Rik Nonelle was asked about what kind of people become Window Genie franchise owners, and if there was a certain “type” we look for. Posted on The Franchise King’s Blog, it read:
Me: What are some of the backgrounds of your most successful franchisees?
Rik: What makes us great is that our owners come from very diverse educational and occupational backgrounds. What makes ALL of our successful owners successful is their hard work and determination to succeed, but how they arrived there is dramatically different. In the past 24 months alone, we have added new franchise partners that include 3 CPA’s, a chemical and a mechanical engineer, a veterinarian that recently sold his 16 person clinic, 2 former CEO’s and a yacht captain. All had success prior to Window Genie, and all are on the track to success WITH Window Genie.
Me: What traits do you look for in a potential owner of a local Window Genie franchise?
Rik: This is a great place to bullet point who we look for and what traits tend to lead to success in our business. A prospective owner doesn’t have to have all of them, but the more the better:Being a self starter is an extremely important quality we look for. There are so many skills that can be taught, but having the innate ability to create success using one’s own drive and resources is hard to come by and we really value that. We look for someone with the ability to follow the system we’ve developed, but take it to a new level adding their own “flair” and create their own success above and beyond what we have to offer as guidance. Someone that does not DEPEND on the system but works WITH it will be successful. Being able to wear many hats and multitask as an owner/operator/manager. Not being afraid to face challenges inside and out the office from employee to customer relations. Being consistently professional and representing the brand to the best of your ability every day. The GAMMY rule – treating everyone’s home as though it’s Gammy’s home. Treating each customer, whether they call with a compliment or a complaint, as though it’s Gammy calling. Before you make a decision, consider, what would Gammy think? Being an honest decent human being is another quality that is difficult to teach. We look for men and women with integrity, who are willing to do the right thing, not the easy thing. A franchisee that truly cares about improving each home and business he enters will be successful. Enthusiasm is contagious and each interaction can become positive when the franchisee is passionate and genuinely proud of what his business has to offer. We look for leaders who can successfully manage their crew and set them up for success. Motivating employees to do their best and be proud of their work is essential. Successful hiring, training and continued guidance for employees creates positive experiences for customers each time those technicians enter their homes.
So once a franchisee comes aboard, what kind of support are they getting?
You’re probably wondering: Once you’ve awarded a franchise, what are you doing to ensure success across the whole system? Are your franchisees really getting the support and help they paid for by buying into a franchise? I’ll let the existing owners answer that.
98% of our franchisees completed the FBR50 franchisee satisfaction survey by Franchise Business Review last year. Their assessment of us earned Window Genie a spot at #4 in America for mid-sized franchises of 50-99 locations. Out of ALL the franchises that participated, regardless of size or industry, Window Genie ranked #35 in America for franchisee satisfaction. We’ve got some happy owners! Some of the benefits of buying into a Window Genie franchise are:
Proprietary Office Genie™ Online Software
Use of the Window Genie Name, Logo & Service marks
Complete Initial and Ongoing Training – week of training at corporate headquarters in Cincinnati before Grand Openign
Grand Opening Assistance on-site with corporate personnel
Marketing and Advertising Programs
Assistance with National Pay-Per-Click campaign via GOOGLE, YAHOO & MSN
Continuing Field Support – on-site training with corporate personnel
National Product & Equipment Affiliations
WG-57 Genie Glass Cleaner for Promotion & Resale
Purchase Discounts on Equipment & Supplies
Publicity and PR Assistance
1-800 Toll Free Support
Teleconference Training “Best Practices” Calls for whole system and “Underclassmen Calls” for new owners
Annual Convention for whole system – 2012 held in New Orleans, 2013 held in San Antonio
Enough about us, are you looking to take control of your own success? Have you always dreamed of being your own boss? If you’ve got the spirit of an entrepreneur and the drive to learn and grow, franchising is for you. To learn more about franchise opportunities, visit our online virtual brochure at windowgeniefranchise.com or call 800-700-0022 to talk to someone today!