Helping with My Wife's Business

This week on the PNC podcast, I discuss the experience that I've had with my wife, Kay, pursuing home care franchise ownership as a nonclinical career option.

Kay was a working as a respiratory therapist when her mother became chronically ill with lung disease. While working as her primary caregiver, she realized how difficult providing 24/7 care is. And she recognized a passion for helping others with similar challenges. We signed on with Home Helpers in 2009 and have been franchise owners ever since.

Our Sponsor

We're proud to have the University of Tennessee Physician Executive MBA Program, offered by the Haslam College of Business, as the sponsor of this podcast.

The UT PEMBA is the longest-running, and most highly respected physician-only MBA in the country, with over 650 graduates. And, unlike other programs, which typically run 1 – 1/2 to 2 years, this program only takes a year to complete. Recently, Economist Magazine ranked the business school #1 in the world for the Most Relevant Executive MBA.

While in the program, you'll participate in a company project, thereby contributing to your organization. As a result, University of Tennessee PEMBA students bring exceptional value to their organizations.

Graduates have taken leadership positions at major healthcare organizations. And they've become entrepreneurs and business owners.

By joining the University of Tennessee physician executive MBA, you will develop the business and management skills needed to advance your career. To find out more, contact Dr. Kate Atchley’s office by calling (865) 974-6526 or go to

Franchise Ownership

When Kay and I became interested in purchasing a franchise, we visited the franchisor in Cincinnati, Ohio. There, we:

  • learned how the company was founded and how a franchise works,
  • met other potential franchise buyers,
  • reviewed the fees and other upfront costs, and
  • discovered the obligations of a franchise owner.

Once we were convinced this was a viable business, we also:

  • Engaged our attorney to go through the Franchise Disclosure Document (the legal document that the Federal Trade Commission requires franchisors provide to their potential franchisees prior to selling a franchise to them);
  • Asked our accountant to create financial projections, based on assumed expenses and projected growth, to predict the likelihood of our success.

Even though Kay never considered herself to be an entrepreneur or business person, she's really taken to it. She's been very successful and she loves what she's doing.

John Jurica

We also had to jump one more unanticipated hurdle. Since the State of Illinois had just implemented a licensing requirement for Home Services Agencies, we spent several months preparing and applying for our license. My experiences with hospital and nursing home licensing as chief medial officer were helpful during this phase.

Franchise ownership is entrepreneurial. But there is a tradeoff. The additional safety and speed provided by a franchise's proven success come at the cost of the franchise fee, royalties and policies and procedures that must be followed. But Kay and I agree that the benefits have far outweighed the costs.


Observations and Advice

On this episode, I also answer questions about owning an in-home care franchise:

  • Is this a good business for a physician?
  • Are there other health related franchises worth investigating?
  • Is there long-term career potential?
  • Are there other positives to this business model?
  • What do the bottom-line finances look like?

Finally, I offer my advice to anyone considering the investment in a franchise like ours:

  1. It's not going replace a physician's full-time salary in a short period of time.
  2. Only invest in a franchise in which there are least 100 or more franchisees.
  3. Have the franchise agreement fully vetted by your attorney, and the financial projections prepared by an accountant.

Lastly, though the services Home Helpers provides are 24/7, owning a franchise is more of a 9-to-5 job. It offers Kay a more balanced life, earns her three times her respiratory therapist’s salary, and leaves her feeling satisfied and fulfilled.

Links for today's episode:

Thanks to our sponsor…

Thanks to the UT Physician Executive MBA program for sponsoring the show. It’s an outstanding, highly rated, MBA program designed for working physicians. It might be just what you need to prepare for that joyful, well-paying career. You can find out more at

I hope to see you next time on the PNC Podcast.

If you enjoyed today’s episode, share it on Twitter and Facebook, and leave a review on iTunes.

Podcast Editing & Production Services are provided by Oscar Hamilton.


The opinions expressed here are mine and my guest’s. While the information provided on the podcast is true and accurate to the best of my knowledge, there is no express or implied guarantee that using the methods discussed here will lead to success in your career, life or business. 

Many of the links that I refer you to, and that you’ll find in the show notes, are affiliate links. That means that I receive a payment from the seller if you purchase the affiliate item using my link. Doing so has no effect on the price you are charged. And I only promote products and services that I believe are of high quality and will be useful to you, that I have personally used or am very familiar with.

The information presented on this blog and related podcast is for entertainment and/or informational purposes only. It should not be construed as medical, legal, tax, or emotional advice. If you take action on the information provided on the blog or podcast, it is at your own risk. Always consult an attorney, accountant, career counsellor, or other professional before making any major decisions about your career. 

Right click here and “Save As” to download this podcast episode to your computer.

Here are the easiest ways to listen:  –