Reflecting on 2021: A Message from Our Brand President
Reflecting on 2021, we connected with Becky Bongiovanni, CSA, Brand President of CarePatrol Franchise Systems, LLC to gain her leadership insights for 2022 and beyond. Keep reading for her insights:
Q: Thinking back over 2021, and CarePatrol Franchise Systems’ many accomplishments, what are the top initiatives achieved?
A: Our biggest operational initiative in 2021 was moving to % royalty structure to ensure everyone’s success. This effort began in late 2019, after feedback from our franchisees and culminated with this significant change to our system. When we finalized the new structure and allowed franchise owners to “opt in,” over 80% of the system was on board. I am so pleased because being on a % royalty sets our franchise owners up for continued growth and revenue opportunities. This also brings the entire system into alignment as we continue to build, run and grow the CarePatrol brand.
Adding to our operational updates, we launched Compass, a powerful Intranet that connects our CarePatrol community with real-time communications and resources needed for their business.
For our brand position, we developed a Marketing Advisory Council (consisting of franchise owners) to help review plans and discuss matters of common interest related to marketing and advertising to help strengthen our overall brand. This included a refreshed website and the development of options for SEO and PPC packages. Also, after more than a decade using our current CarePatrol brand, we engaged a firm to help us research our brand presence to ensure alignment with our continued growth and evolution. We are excited to launch our refreshed brand shortly!
Q: What was the biggest surprise in 2021?
A: The resilience of our franchisees never ceases to surprise me and if there has ever been a moment where their strong work ethic and dedication has been needed, it has been throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. While the pandemic has made business more difficult to navigate, our franchisees outperformed their record months from 2019 and all prior years.
There is a real need for our services and our performance numbers continue to reflect this. CarePatrol Franchise Systems had three–possibly four when we finalize December numbers– all-time record breaking months of systemwide revenue in 2021. These numbers not only reflect the success of our work but also reflect the impact we are making and the support we are providing to clients who need care solutions.
Q: How was the organization able to pivot/quickly adapt to a dynamic pandemic environment?
A: In 2020, we quickly adjusted our operations to ensure we could provide our community with the support and resources they needed to continue providing their services.
Starting with our internal operations, we took place in a special COVID-19 training for Case Managers with the ACMA, published a COVID-19 Business Guide for franchise locations to implement, provided weekly updates on the state of the pandemic, including updates to CDC guidelines and information to support business development like PPC loans. To further support our franchisees’ business development, we increased field support, switched to virtual trainings and conferences, increased training webinars and provided additional revenue streams. We were lucky to also connect our members with vital vendors to bring wholesale pricing for PPE, offered royalty support programs for qualified franchisees, and increased lead generation and national brand awareness through press releases, brand videos, social media and live events.
Moving onto our general operations, we pivoted our in-person facility tours to virtual tours by using our YouTube video library. We also updated the format of our marketing collateral to digital files, which made them easily available to anyone interested in learning more about CarePatrol’s services. Thought leadership has always been a priority in our messaging, and we continue to share the latest information with our community through timely articles and blogs addressing common concerns like choosing the right community.
Q: What are the top three leadership lessons learned over the past year?
A: A strong approach to communication and strong vision are key components of a successful business. When connecting with others, strong and clear communication is critical to building trust and strengthening relationships. Listening is just as important–you need to be present in the conversation and be open to learn from everyone involved. Proper listening is key to obtaining a more holistic view of the issues at hand.
Also, it is important to be a visionary leader. When thinking about vision, developing a strategy that is focused on the here and now is very helpful to keeping up with unforeseen changes. Business operations are becoming more moment-to-moment and it is important to be nimble and able to re-evaluate and assess as needed.
Q: What are a few of the exciting opportunities for CarePatrol and its franchise owners in 2022?
A: We are looking forward to implementing our brand refresh and how it will help present CarePatrol as a trusted partner in care solutions.
Alongside the brand refresh, we will continue our work to further develop our marketing strategies and our methods of business operation. With a focus on innovation, we will improve our methods of doing business and focus more on the development of reliable and accessible tools like Calculated Care.