Marcia St. Hilaire Finn, Managing Owner and Director of Bright Star Early Care and Preschool, lights up wherever she is with her enthusiasm, energy, and positive attitude. She joins the show to talk about her start in Dominica and how she ended up in Washington D.C., her advice on setting smart goals, and shares her logistics on her teacher engagement and culture of fun and dedication. Marcia also discusses how her background in Pediatric Nursing helps Bright Star stand out, along with their attention to serving the children and their families using music, language studies, and healthy living.
Whether we like it or not, the child care industry is in a labor crisis. With a booming economy right now, unemployment rates are at an all time low in the United States and companies across the country continue to raise their minimum pay in order to stay competitive and attract hard working employees. Unfortunately, in this industry, it can be hard to keep up with competitive wages and this can make you feel discouraged when trying to seek out A players because you feel like you don’t have enough to offer to them.
Lety Carvajal and Raul Pineyro of Springview Academy in Florida join the show today to talk about working as a married couple, the cute story of how they met and became a partnership, and spotting teacher burnout. They are both highly focused on professional development, active leadership and creating a culture that serves children and their families yet also provides the staff with a healthy amount of freedom and autonomy. They share the story of how they went from 125 children to 350, almost tripling their enrollment and the strategies of success that keep them at the top of their game.
A strong, positive company culture starts with a strong, positive, inspired leader who has a passion for their work and truly LEADS (by example.) A couple of years ago, at the Child Care Success Summit, Kris Murray showed a video to illustrate a point – and it stuck with me. This video was of a guy dancing at some sort of outdoor music festival.
In this industry, I see too many of you hire out of desperation because you are in fear of being out of ratio. The people you hire in order to quickly meet ratio usually are not vetted to be sure they are aligned with your school’s culture and values, and they rarely undergo a proper onboarding process to set them up for success.
In this episode, I am joined by Leann and Jake Chamberlain, a husband and wife team that run Brighton Montessori in Brighton, Michigan. Leann was the recent winner of the Child Care Rockstar contest at the 2018 Child Care Success Summit. Her vulnerable and authentic approach won the hearts of everyone there. They discuss what it felt like to get out of their comfort zone to enter the contest, the ways they continue to grow their enrollment and connect with the community, the unique challenges of running a Montessori school, and what’s next for the dynamic duo.
Teacher Appreciation Week is a national holiday celebrated in United States which takes place in the first full week of May. I hope you already have some plans to celebrate your teachers, but if not, use this article to generate some ideas!
Jennifer Vazquez, the owner of A Sunny Start Preschool, joins the show today. She talks about the culture of caring, how she sets herself apart from the competition in her three full locations in the Miami area, how she attracts great employees and the marketing techniques that have helped grow her enrollment the most.
Ann Rhoades joins the show to discuss her extremely important and successful careers at Southwest Airlines and JetBlue, and shares more about the extraordinary service she and her team at Peopleink provide for leaders looking to shape and define their culture. A highly sought-after speaker and author behind the book Built on Values, she provides inspiration and strategic direction for many companies around the world. Ann talks about why core values are integral to the success of the culture, how we define and determine a great culture, interviewing tips for hiring players aligned with the company value systems, and the qualities of good leadership.
Jennifer is the Vice President of Operations at Magic Memories Child Development Centers. She has been working with children and entrepreneurial since she started her own business at age 11, “Best Babysitter.” Today, she discusses her path from starting as Director to growing with the company in the now three locations. She and Kris talk about the importance of having a director that holds everything together like glue, hiring based on core values, how her strategy of onboarding evolved, and how they have developed their culture. Jennifer leads with positivity and connection and shares how she manages conflict resolution and tips on how to have hard conversations.