Scotty Milas' All Things Considered Franchising Podcast w/ Ryan Parsons - CEO of Evive Brands

June 04, 2024 00:23:53
Scotty Milas' All Things Considered Franchising Podcast w/ Ryan Parsons - CEO of Evive Brands
All Things Considered Franchising Podcast
Scotty Milas' All Things Considered Franchising Podcast w/ Ryan Parsons - CEO of Evive Brands

Jun 04 2024 | 00:23:53


Show Notes

In this episode of All Things Considered Franchising, host Scott Milas welcomes Ryan Parsons, CEO of Evive Brands, overseeing multiple franchises, including Executive Home Care, Assisted Living Locators, and Brothers that Just Do Gutters. Ryan transitioned from a career in the blue-collar sector when he and his brother franchised their successful gutter business in 2015. Known for his expertise in franchise development and support, Ryan has been instrumental in creating operational frameworks that ensure franchisee success.

Ryan shares his fascinating journey from blue-collar work to leading a flourishing franchise empire with Scotty. He also discusses his current role at Evive Brands, where he integrates best practices across various brands, from home healthcare to estate sales franchises. Ryan and Scotty share useful advice for prospective franchisors and franchisees, emphasizing the necessity of grit, engagement, and transparent earnings data. Ryan says, "If you don't have a business that's flow positive, it's not a franchisable business."

Key Takeaways:
-Franchising Success: Emphasizes the importance of having a proven operational model, complete with transparent and robust financial data, before franchising a business.
-Grit and Engagement: Stresses the need for franchisees to stay engaged and
show resilience in managing their businesses to achieve lasting success.
-Infrastructure Development: Highlights the significance of building comprehensive support systems to ensure franchisees can thrive, particularly in service-based franchises.

-Semi-Passive Ownership: Cautions against the trend of semi-passive ownership, recommending a hands-on approach initially to establish a solid foundation.
-Integrated Best Practices: Shows how cross-brand integration of best practices
can drive success across different franchise models within a parent company.

Scotty Milas can be reached at [email protected] and (860)751-
Ryan Parsons can be reached at

#allthingsconsideredfranchising #scottmilas #businessownership
#franchiseopportunities #ryanparsons #evivebrands #brothersthatjustdogutters
#handsonapproach #grit

View Full Transcript

Episode Transcript

[00:00:06] Speaker A: Hello, everybody, and welcome to another episode of All Things considered franchising. Powered by Scott all Things considered franchising is a top 15 franchise podcast dedicated to the franchising industry entrepreneurs. Our guests include people in franchising, both on the franchisee franchisor side. We do occasionally have independent entrepreneurs. We have ideas, business entrepreneurs come on board. So a lot of great guests. We're pretty close to 100 episodes right now. is an organization consulting organization I started many, many years ago that helps people research and explore business ownership, primarily in the franchise space, helping you build a roadmap, a business model, and, of course, then introducing you to opportunities, business opportunities that potentially fit, and then helping you through the process of validation so you can end up making a validated decision and not a emotional one. I have a great guest today, somebody who has just a fascinating story. You know, he put his blue collar hat on for many, many years and recently just switched it to a white collar hat. And that is Ryan Parsons, who is CEO of Evive Brands, which focuses on two home health brands, both executive home care and assisted living locators. Two brands I happen to know very well, and two, and one additional brand in the real estate business, liquidation. That kind of tie in graysons and a fascinating brand with a fascinating story took off like it was going to the moon for the first time. One of the original founders, along with his brothers back in 1999. That seems like yesterday, we were just chuckling, and that's brothers that just do gutters. Ryan, welcome to the show. [00:01:54] Speaker B: Thanks so much for having me, Scotty. Appreciate it. [00:01:57] Speaker A: You know, you and I were chit chatting before we started to record here, and we were talking about how you wear multiple hats. But this really all got started for you back in 1999. I guess your brother started the business initially, brothers that just do gutters. And then you came on board and really kind of brought this to the forefront, franchising it. And I have to tell our listening audience that this brand exploded, and not only exploded because of the ROI potential, but it exploded because of the systems and the best practices that you and your brother built as a franchisor. Tell us how, you know, kind of put us in the kitchen table, at the kitchen table when you and your brother were kind of, you know, developed the business and then launch brothers that do gutters, and, you know, and then we'll get into some of the other brands, and then, of course, your role as CEO and, you know, talk about franchising in general. [00:02:55] Speaker B: Cool. [00:02:55] Speaker A: It's a great story. [00:02:56] Speaker B: I'll try and keep the origin story short, but, you know, my brother started a one up company. He was the owner, operator, installer, marketer. I got involved out of. I was in dot bomb. It went sideways. So I helped my brother install gutters on the weekend and then full time, and I took all my marketing skills, helped apply it to his business, and then we started to dream for more. And eventually we were getting mistaken for a franchise. They're like, wow, Leonard trucks, are you guys a franchise? We're like, no. My brother being the visionary, he's like, well, we should be. And, you know, from the idea of, you know, we should franchise this to actually doing it and have something that's actually a good model. It took us seven years, you know, from that time, that idea, to really develop the systems, the technology, the brand. How do we train our installers? Everything that we did from that day forward, when we wanted to franchise that, that was the litmus test. We started two pilot locations in 2010. They broke half of our systems, and we realized we weren't quite ready yet. And then we fixed them. We started a call center. We have a, we have a marketing team. We had all this stuff in place with business coaching. So before we ever had an official franchise, it turns out we had more infrastructure than most franchises that have 50 franchisees. So we didn't know what we didn't know. We just built what we thought we would need to have to support franchisees. 2015, we franchised it finally had some early people that bought mostly people we knew. And then 2021 came around, and all of a sudden, we were the hottest thing in franchising. We had the most robust item 19 that most people have ever seen, because we kept great data from day one. And when the brokers actually saw what we were doing, and the consultants, they loved it. And they. And, yeah, like you said, it was like a rocket to the moon from 21 to today. [00:04:54] Speaker A: So take us at today's numbers, number of units. I mean, I think this is just fascinating because there are brands that spend lifetime, a lifetime to get to where you are. Tell us a little bit about the numbers. You know, just not, we don't have to share any revenue type numbers. I mean, people who are interested in learning more about brothers that just do gutters can reach out to me. We'll talk about that. But talk us about the initial numbers, because I want to follow up with one question on how you got there. On the most. [00:05:25] Speaker B: I want to say there's around 120 owners and about 400 territories or units. The average person has about 2.8. So my note, don't quote me on that, but I think we're shy of 400 units. But about 2.8 units per franchise owner. [00:05:45] Speaker A: Right. And just to educate our audience here, a franchisee may own more than one territory. It'd be like if, you know, to use McDonald's as an example, you may be. You may have four or five units. In the service based business, we talk about territory. So somebody who may have one, two, three or four, five territories, depending on that. One of the things that you mentioned as we opened up in this is how you structured to build brothers that just do gutters. And this will take us into the other brands and how you're building them now and again, two of which are well known healthcare brands. But one of the things that you mentioned was putting the pieces together first on the operational and support side for your franchisees. A lot of franchisors make the mistake of thinking they can do it all themselves on a short leash and find that they're swimming upstream. Tell us a little about that, because that's fascinating that you knew that the important part to grow was to be able to support your franchisees. [00:06:56] Speaker B: Absolutely. So we hired a business coach back in 2010. My brother and I, we went through the school of hard knocks. Like, we didn't know how to run a business. We didn't even know how to read a p and l for the first five, six, seven years in business. So we just went for it, you know, and then as we learned what it is and what it takes to actually run a successful business, to understand your KPI's, to understand, you know, the ebbs and flows and cash flow and balance sheets, we realized we could not in good conscience launch a franchisee without offering them the same support we got from a coach. So we knew we had to do that. And the skill of gutters, it's a little bit harder. Like then, you know, I don't want to diminish any of the other brands, but, you know, when you think of like a mosquito spray or some of the other franchises that are in the service thing, a lot of people can be trained in three or four days and they can get a certificate and it's low barrier to entry work. Gutters is like, it's not being an electrician, but it's a skill that takes more. So we knew we had to have more support, more training, training facility, an LMS, like for the, like a learning ladder for all the ice floors and things. And we realized by our two pilot locations that they couldn't answer the phone. Like, you know, they were losing a lot of opportunity just because they were wearing all the hats. So we said we. And the marketing, so we did all the marketing, all the call center, we had the training developed, we had the coaching system in place all before we launched our first official franchisee. And yeah, it made it tough. We didn't have a lot of extra money floating around, my brother and I. By no means would you have thought we, you know, by our lifestyles and the money we were earning at that point, you wouldn't think that we had five, six locations, because we literally just said, you know what, Ken, what's the minimum we need to make right now? And let's put it all back into the people, all back into the system. And when the consultants finally caught wind, I mean, day one, we got to meet with great consultants, but they don't want to show a brand that has two pilot locations. So as they watched, we had a couple here and there, and then as it kind of caught fire, everyone's like, oh, this, this brand has got it. And so that was really cool that the leadership. And as we grew really fast, I equate it to playing speed chess. I knew we were going to need full time trainers. And when it started happening, like we need them now, we need to have a training facility, you know, so we got, we need an onboarding department. So it was so fun and nerve wracking to be like the coolest kid in franchising for about twelve months. Very fun, very cool. And we kept the wheels on barely at a few times, but we kept the wheels on. [00:09:40] Speaker A: It's a great story. It's a fascinating story. There's only a. I can count on one hand the number of brands that had that kind of rocket to the moon takeoff. And you have to be careful because too much growth too soon can really bite you in the backside if you're not prepared or in a position to support your franchisees. Because for our listening audience, a lot of people that come into franchising don't necessarily have the experience or the understanding in your case for gutters, it's that training side. There's the franchisee side, which is understanding and delegating the best practices and running the business, but then there's the installation and the servicing of gutters. So it's two elements. So you need that business experience, but that you train on how to run the business, which is what you and your brother went through, that pain. But then there's also the ability to be able to have to be able to train your employees to do the services that you're providing. So it's a great story. So let's flash forward. Brothers that do gathers is still a player in the industry. It's still a well known name. Like I said, people that waited and wanted to think about it, in most cases lost out because, you know, franchisors don't hold up territory. They want the people that I want to get in. So, but let's flash forward. You now CEO of Vive brands, four brands. We mentioned them, two in the senior care, one related to senior care, and the third is the fourth, obviously, is brothers that do gutters. How did this come about? I mean, you are. Your private equity partner is Riverside, well known in the industry. So tell us a little bit about how your role of a CEO. My guess is that you can sleep probably a little bit more at night than taking phone calls from franchisees every night. But tell us a little bit about your role now as CEO. [00:11:44] Speaker B: So what's cool is, I mean, it's awesome. I love what I do. I love working with franchisors. When you're building. And we were riding that wave of brothers. It was so cool. How many franchisors of other well known entities are calling us up saying, how did you handle this? Or what are you doing for this? And I love that. I love to help anybody get where I am. Right. So if somebody wants to start a business, I'll help you the best I can. You want to franchise your business? I'll help you. You have a franchise and trying to figure out how to support your franchisees. I'll tell you everything I know. So what's so cool about this opportunity to be the, the CEO is that I'm working with all these brand presidents of all EHC Graysons and brothers, and we're continually just making things better. We're taking things that were really awesome at brothers, and we're adding them over to all and all that's doing some really cool things. We're integrating over at brothers and Grayson. So it's so cool that we can kind of centralize ideas, technologies, support marketing. It's been super fun to kind of learn the nuances. There's some really unique things in each brand, and then there's just some things that are generic, like how we onboard. Well, you might have to, like, I want to make sure everything's the same process yet unique. To each system. So I'm having a blast doing all this kind of stuff with these other brands. [00:13:10] Speaker A: You know, it's interesting because, you know, there has been an explosion over the last 36, 48 months about people that want to franchise their business. I probably get anywhere from ten to 15 calls a week, people asking me, can you help me franchise my business or I want a franchise. I had an idea. So in your opinion and how you've looked at it and the successes that you've had with brothers and the other brands that you're representing now part of Evive, what do you think are the essential first three steps for somebody who has a business? It's up and running and want to franchise it. I mean, what's the strategic thinking? I mean, a lot of people come into this at least thinking that, hey, look, I'm going to get the paperwork done, I'm going to franchise it, and all of a sudden I'm going to be just have leads, leads, leads, and people are going to be banging down my door and both you and I are chuckling. And although brothers that gutters did take off, tell us about the three things that people should really think about and consider before they go ahead and really want to franchise their business. [00:14:16] Speaker B: That you have something that's not a trend. You know, I've seen a lot of things franchise that were the, you know, a fidget spinner, you know, like, I mean, there's some things that happen and they have a bubble. This cannot be a fleeting trend, you know, that people hop onto and put in their 401 ks and, and now three years later, no one cares about whatever. So I think that's important. But ultimately, the thing that really sold the franchises for us was an item 19 that was transparent and real. So a lot of people, they don't, they boast these great models and they said, you know, I know you can't make earnings claims, but they're making claims like, hey, this can be fantastic for you. And franchisees are finding out it's not. And I think that it's very important that you actually have a business that at the end of the day, your franchisees can make money after royalty. And it doesn't, they don't have to be the best in the system. They have to write people that are brave enough to go in on a franchise and if they follow the system that they can make decent money. If they follow system, well, they can make great money. Right? So we, so I think the item 19, being clean and real is super important. If you don't have a business that's not, you know, like, if you have a one up shop, and at the end of the day, after everyone's paid, even yourself, you're sitting on 5% or less. It's not a franchisable business. [00:15:43] Speaker A: Cash flow positive. Yeah. You want to. You want a business. Cash flow positive. No, I think you're absolutely right, Ryan, that, you know, when I get approached by people that, hey, I want to franchise my business, my first question is, do you have an operating model, and how many operating model locations do you have? Well, I have one. You know, I'm only doing it part time, and, you know, but I really want to make it bigger. Or, you know, I have one location, but why haven't you done two locations? So people want to see one, I think, and correct me if I'm wrong, that, like you just said, the numbers can be at least duplicated, if not better than what the corporate location is doing. And two, that you have the systems and the best practices. And I think this is where the people make a mistake that can be duplicated and be able to teach somebody to do that, because, you know, not everybody can run a gutters business, but you got to be able to have a majority of people that could. There needs to be some common skill sets for people to want to get into it. You don't have the experience in it, but you got to be able to understand it. Fair statement. [00:16:51] Speaker B: Absolutely. Fair statement. And then making sure that you have the training and support dialed in before you take anybody's money, that, you know, you can support them and ten others behind them, that it's, you know, and in the beginning, it's tough, you know. You know, I onboarded the first twelve franchisees myself. [00:17:10] Speaker A: Right. [00:17:10] Speaker B: So that's how it is in the beginning. And, of course, you're scaling. So, yeah, I think we got close to three items there. [00:17:17] Speaker A: Right. We're talking to Ryan Parsons, CEO of ebod Brands and also founder of Gutter Brothers, that just do gutters. Let's just quickly switch over to the franchisee side. With the way brothers grew the other brands that you have, executive home care, assisted living, locators, Graysons, you see a lot of people come and go as far as inquiring about franchise ownership, wanting to be a business owner for our listening audience, for people who are really contemplating and thinking about getting into business ownership and wanting to kind of explore franchising, what do you think are some of the qualifications or skill sets and understanding that they should have as they start their journey of investigating what are some of the common mistakes maybe you saw people made early that were investigating and things that people should be paying attention to and maybe some of the skill sets that people had to be that, you know, eventually got them to be very successful business people. [00:18:19] Speaker B: Yeah, well, our most successful people are engaged, and they have grit and, you know, so they're engaged in the system. They're not missing coaching calls. They're not missing, you know, peer groups and not filling out their data. Those are not the ones that make it. And the. And the ones that make it actually have grit. I don't care what franchise you buy. You know, Mike Tyson says everyone's got a plan till they get punched in the face. [00:18:46] Speaker A: Right. [00:18:47] Speaker B: And that's what I love about franchising, is we've got the plan. It can be duplicated. I'm literally handing you how to do it. I cannot prevent our franchisees from getting punched in the face. They still have that employee that might leave them, and they're. They don't know what to do tomorrow because they don't know how they're going to get the gutter on the house. I can't save them from everything. And that's where the grit comes in. The people that are like, nope, this is what I'm doing. This. This. This is what we're going for. So I have not found a franchise concept yet that is that easy, that there's nothing, you know, surprising that can happen. So I think you got to be ready. And the ones that go all in are the ones that do the best. I mean, there's some other people that can do well when they have multiple businesses and they put general managers. But really franchising, I believe a lot of people. This, this semi passive buzzword is a little bit of a killer. [00:19:42] Speaker A: Yes, it is. [00:19:43] Speaker B: I don't love it. There's only a few people that can actually do a business semi passive, and they already have a ton of money, and they can hire managers and put people in place. But my, my personal goal and belief is I want to get people to become semi passive. [00:20:00] Speaker A: Your business, I agree. Yep. [00:20:02] Speaker B: You treat it, if you treat your business like a hobby, it will pay you like a hobby. If you go all in, then you're going to get the results. But eventually, I would love for you to actually own a business. And, and I have the same description of business ownership as Robert Kiyosaki. It's somebody who can leave their business for three to six months and it runs without them. That is my goal for anybody that buys a franchise that eventually you can get to the point that everything can run without you and it's making you money. And it is an investment that continues to give you over time. [00:20:36] Speaker A: Great advice. Yes, great advice. I mean, you're absolutely right. This semi apt passive mentality now about investing three, four, or $500,000, even $100,000 into a business and just turning the key over to somebody day one is just. It's just mind boggling at some point, listening to some people what their vision is. So your guidance would be, hey, look, put the 1218 24 months into building the business, set up your management team, take care of your management team and employees, and then if you want to go travel the world or invest in another business, diversify, do it. But the idea of coming into it as a semi absentee owner, unless you have an absentee partner or a partner that's a equity partner, you know, much like you with your brother, somebody, you know, that works as well. [00:21:30] Speaker B: Yeah, silent investors. You just can't think, I'm going to keep my 40 an hour, 40 hours a week job and I'm going to start a business. It's like you're out of your mind. Right? [00:21:42] Speaker A: No, you're absolutely right. I mean, and people don't want to hear it. But Ryan, we're running out of time here. Any last thoughts? Anything? I might have not asked you about the brands. If anybody has any interest in learning about evive brands and executive home care, assisted living, locators, graysons and of course, brothers that just do gothers, they can reach out to me. You can connect with Ryan Parsons. P a r s o n s on LinkedIn. Any other closing thoughts here? Anything you may want to add? [00:22:11] Speaker B: Yeah, I mean, if you're a franchisor and you've got a system and you're thinking about becoming part of a family of brands and you're in the home services or home care, I'd be more than happy to talk to you about what that looks like, the reality of private equity, the realities of that type of stuff. More than happy to talk to anybody as well. That's been thinking about. That might be an exit strategy at some point. [00:22:36] Speaker A: That's great. Well, again, we've been talking to Ryan Parsons, CEO of evive brands and one of the original founders of brothers at just Dothers. And I would encourage anybody in the listening audience just to read the story about brothers that just togethers. It's a great story. And I'm sure the other three brands that are in the Aviv family right now are going to be following the same path. I am your host, Scott Scotty Miles. I want to thank you again for reaching out listening. You can find all the episodes of all things considered franchising on all of the podcast channels. You can also go directly to our podcast website, and of course, if you have any questions regarding franchising becoming a franchisee, you can reach out to me on dot. Fill out the inquiry form and I'll be glad to provide free guidance, free research. There are no services, no fees for the services that we provide our clients. Ryan, we wish you all the best. We hope to get you back in the next six months or so, get an update. But we appreciate you taking some time out from your busy day to talk to the audience today. [00:23:42] Speaker B: Absolutely. Thank you so much. Appreciate it. [00:23:45] Speaker A: Thank you.

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