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Franchising, Merry Maids

People – a key ingredient to winning in franchising


February 8, 2024


“We foster a culture of belonging and family, and we make sure every person feels valued and appreciated.”

Since 2016, Betty Kowal has been building her franchise – Merry Maids of Mendota Heights in Minnesota. Here she shares her proudest achievement to date as well as her advice for other entrepreneurs.

What is your best advice for people who want to open their own business or franchise?
It is a hard job, but it’s so rewarding. It is nerve wracking to think that you have a lot of people who depend on you to feed their families, and you do not want to let them down. But once you surround yourself with the right team, and everything clicks into place, it is very fulfilling. You also need to be passionate about what you do. 

What about ServiceMaster made it the right company for you and your career?
I started as a Branch Manager of a company-owned location. When corporate decided to make all locations franchises, I consulted with another local owner who gave me the confidence to go for it. I enjoyed every aspect of my position. To be able to continue doing this and be able to make decisions that benefitted my business, it was a no brainer. I had a lot of support from the home office, my family and other owners. 

What does it mean to you to be a black-owned business leader?
I certainly would not bestow that title upon myself, but I am honored to be considered one. This was not a solo mission; I have an amazing team surrounding me. I have a great office team and an amazing front line team who go out there every day and provide excellent service to our clients. We foster a culture of belonging and family, and we make sure every person feels valued and appreciated. More so for me it is two-fold, I am a black immigrant. So, I suppose it is being able to achieve the proverbial American dream. I hope that my journey and my story will be able to inspire people who look like me. 

What accomplishment are you most proud of as a franchise owner?
We have been able to double our business from when we started over eight years ago. Again, having such an amazing and dynamic team backing me and support at home when I have to put in those long hours is key. I am proud that we have a team that works in unison and truly tries their best each day. I am proud to see my team members growing personally and professionally. I love to see it when they are achieving their goals, and we celebrate their wins.