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Everything Is Better With a Team: A Fireside Chat with Byron Zahm

Posted on:

May 8, 2023

Building a team of talent that can help support your business and cheer you on can help you unlock success with your business.


Our Performance Excellence Manager, Karly Arnott chatted with franchisee Byron Zahm of Tutor Doctor Albuquerque about his personal and professional journey.

Learn more about Byron and his Tutor Doctor story in his fireside chat below!



Learning From Byron's Fireside Chat


Karly: Hello everyone, my name is Karly. I am one of the business coaches here at Tutor Doctor, and I have the pleasure of welcoming Byron Zahm here into this fireside chat as an opportunity to get to know him, his experience with Tutor Doctor so far, and how the coaching program has really supported him towards seeing success in his business in 2021.


But also really learning what he's uncovered from his learnings in the last year and what he's looking forward to in the year ahead. So, Byron, I'll hand it over to you to introduce yourself from here.


Byron: Thanks, Karly. Originally, I'm actually from Toronto, Canada, but I've lived in the States for several decades.


I had to come all the way to Albuquerque, New Mexico to find Tutor Doctor, believe it or not. That was in October of 2019 when I began my franchise journey with Tutor Doctor. So it's been almost two and a half years.


Karly: Yes. It's crazy to think. I feel like we blinked and we're here.


But share with everyone what attracted you to Tutor Doctor and how you really landed with this business opportunity.


Byron: Well, I had already made contact with Tutor Doctor and I was really taking a close look at it. When I did get an email, it was sort of out of the blue. It was really bizarre.


It actually came direct from the existing franchisee right here in Albuquerque, and it was a resale opportunity. There was something about that email and the opportunity offered as a resale that really attracted me. So we met, and of course, he was just a great, great guy.


We still collaborate together to some extent. And then, you know, meeting the rest of the Tutor Doctor family. At the end of the day, it was the people. Quality, good people who were really sincerely committed to delivering a great service to the folks out there that need it and had the systems and processes in place that would allow me to do that.


Karly: My next question for you, Byron, and I know firsthand from working closely with you over the last number of years. But if you had to pick, what was a major challenge that you overcame as a franchisee and also what would the outcome be of overcoming that challenge?


Byron: Well, for me, the biggest thing was when I went to training. The reality of stepping out on my own, so to speak, you know? All sorts of anxiety came up, and I was really questioning at that point, “Gosh, am I really doing the right thing? Am I putting myself out there all over again?”


The fear of failure is really what it was. I went through the training and despite all my jitters, I was told that I did some things really, really well. I did have a certain amount of confidence that because there was a good system and a good process in place that Tutor Doctor offered that if I just did what they prescribed, I should have every reason for success. I did that. Not exactly everything, because I remember people were telling me about yard signs. And I said, no way. That's too cheesy. Well, I've been using signs for two years now, and this morning I think I've got three calls already.


Midday and three calls already for signs. So it's about trusting the process, trusting the systems, and it's trial and error for all kinds of things, but it works. So I put the work in, I put the effort in. I continue to do that day in and day out, and the results have come. We're generating leads, we're closing enrollments.


I'm adding staff. I'm building on a business that's growing. Yes, it takes good, honest, hard work and nothing replaces that. But if you trust the system and you trust the process and do it day in, and day out, you can't help but start reaping the fruits of your labor.


Karly: Thank you for sharing that, Byron.


I want to add something as well because I've obviously experienced closely your transition curve along that experience and something you've done really well is you've really leaned into support when you've needed it and you ask for help, you ask for the best practices, and then you put the action into implementing those things and you do that wholeheartedly.


You used the word action a few times, and I can wholeheartedly say that you do take the action required to implement these things that we do have in place. Because of that the work has paid off and continues to pay off. So I guess the next question I'll ask you is what opportunity are you most excited about as you look into the year ahead?


Byron: What I'm really excited about is the team that I have begun to develop and I've been blessed to be able to attract some really, really great people. I'm excited about the prospect of building this enterprise with them. You know, my history is that I've tried to do everything on my own and have been very independent, so that's been the area of personal growth that Tutor Doctor has offered me is, “Hey, you actually can, and it's recommended and advisable. Reach out, talk to these people who've had experience and success and so forth.”


So I've been able to tap into that, whether it's the business coach, or yourself in the past. Now  it's Nick, but the other franchisees too. I'm building my own team here. That just feels really good because it feels like I'm not just being successful as a business, I'm being successful as a person.


Karly: Yeah. You've experienced that growth at the community level. Last year, I believe you had 70% revenue growth on the year before. Now that growth is scaling into a team so you can really continue to amplify your impact in the community. It's inspiring to see.


Just a few more questions for you before we wrap up. I think next, just with your experience and having a business coach, I know you've had and been committed to a business coach and the active coaching program since you launched. So, if you can just give your experience a little bit about how that's benefited you and your business and kept you on track that would be great.


Byron: Yeah. Well, you said you used the terminology that “kept me on track,” and that has been a big part of the experience working with you and Nick. I started working with a business coach right away. It's just a source of comfort knowing that there's somebody there who knows what you don't know and that you can go to them and that they can keep you accountable.


For me, that was really important because there are so many pieces to the business that you have to keep track of. For each of us, it's different. We have strengths and so we spend our time there. That means that other things that are maybe no less important get neglected because it's just who you are.


We avoid the things that we don't really care for. You know, working with the business coach keeps you on track, keeps you focused, and keeps those things in front so that accountability allows you to do the things that you would tend to avoid otherwise. And by doing them, you're bringing greater balance to your business.


You're preparing the business for greater potential. We’ve had some pretty transparent conversations at times about what is or isn't being done and what we could do differently and how we could do it, or I wasn't feeling that enthusiastic because I'm tired or whatever else and you would be putting that smiling face on and encouraging me. It's been great.


Karly: I think what I would add in, and correct me if I'm wrong Byron, but I think the opportunity it also has consistently presented for you in your business is it gives you that focus time every two weeks to work on your business. When you're working in your business every single day, and just using the framework to take a step back, look at the data, and then problem solve on the biggest, most high-impact areas of your business towards your year-end goal.


That opportunity is something that the coaching program holds in place for you and your business. So would you agree?


Byron: I would say, very well said. Love it.


Karly: To wrap up, what advice would you give to other business owners who are looking to drive growth in their business this year?


Byron: Well, I would say start off with belief. Believe in yourself. That you have got the heart, the desire, the energy, and the will to be successful. Believe that you've got a great team of people around you who want the same for you, but more than that, they have the tools and resources to come alongside you and help you.


Belief isn't just something you're persuaded by. It's something that you do. So this is a great opportunity, and believe in yourself and do what the system recommends and advises. If you do that day in and day out, and you keep chipping away, and you keep plugging away, you will experience success.


You're not going to do everything. You may try to do everything, but along the way, you're going to find out, “Hey, this works for me and I'm going to run with that. So just keep plugging away.


Believe it, and do it. You'll make great decisions because you've got a great team around you that will help you.


Karly: Byron, thank you so much and thanks everyone for tuning in for this fireside chat. We'll see you soon.


Byron: Thank you so much.


Teaming Up To Further His Business

Thanks for taking the time to chat with Karly about your success, Byron! There were some valuable insights for everyone to take away from this fireside chat.


Do you want to learn more about owning a Tutor Doctor franchise? Be sure to contact us to get started!

Tags: entrepreneurship, education franchise, business ownership

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