Ep:17: Former Plumber & His Wife Build a $14M Home Care Agency, Now Son-in-Law a High School Football Coach Carries on the Legacy
David Ellenwood, Founder of Sunny Days in Home Care is here with his son-in-law John Bennett, now the current CEO, to talk about why they started a home care agency and how they've grown it to $14M+ as one of the fastest growing family-owned businesses in Pittsburgh.
Miriam Allred (00:05):
Welcome to Vision | The Care Leaders’ Podcast. This is Miriam Allred with Home Care Pulse. Today I’m excited to chat with Founder of Sunny Days in Home Care, David Ellenwood and his son-in-law John Bennett, who’s the current CEO. They’re here to tell us about starting their independent agency back in 2011 and how they’ve become one of the fastest growing family owned businesses in the nation. Welcome to the show, both David and John. Thank you. Thanks for having us. Absolutely. Well, let’s really dive right in David. I want to hear from your end, why Sunny Days in Home Care? How did you get started? Give us some of the backstory.
David Ellenwood (00:44):
Yeah. great question. And we have a great story, I think to tell about starting the business. In February of next year it’ll be our ten-year anniversary. But my wife and I were I was, I was unemployed at the time. When we started thinking about this, my wife was working a dead end job that she hated and we’re both entrepreneurial types. So I had a background in home care, medical home care. And we were thinking about starting our own business doing something like this, we weren’t sure what to do, where to go, what direction to take. And we were looking, looking, we looked into franchising, buying a franchise. We looked at a number of different things to do one day I was out and about. And,uI,uulike I said, I was unemployed, so it was picking up a few plumbing jobs here and there.
David Ellenwood (01:37):
And I got to thinking about it. I said, you know, I talked to myself, we can do this ourselves. I called my wife. I said, you know, I think we should try to do this ourselves. Not franchise, not do all that. I think we can, you know, just to see what happened. She said, you won’t believe this, but I’m looking online right now and see a place that will train us to do this ourselves. So we were both on the same page without even knowing about it. When I went I had I had about $12,000. I had gotten from a settlement from a company that I had sued for believing I for age discrimination and won the lawsuit ended up with about $12,000, which was happened to be exactly what we needed for going out and getting training in California, coming back and having a little seed money to start the business.
David Ellenwood (02:26):
We started at ground zero. No no no clients, no, no employees, no nothing. With very little, very little knowledge of where we were heading. People said, you’re going to get busy, bear get ready. I thought I can’t wait because, you know, we need to make some money here. And she was still working. My goal was to get her home that you know, sometime maybe a year or two from there, get her out of that job. So she’d come home and work the business with me. Well, got my first client,upretty quickly, 24 hour a day. Client had no employees scrambling to try to get some employees to help me with this thing. And I did,uI went in and helped and did the,uufirst,u30 days, 30 nights, 10 to 10, 10 an evening till seven or eight every day, taking care of this client and,uand going home and trying to,ustill, you know, start a business.
David Ellenwood (03:24):
I had a few employees to help me out with and started building this thing from there. Within about seven or eight months, I got, I was going 24 seven with calls and things in the middle of the night. And I mean, literally 24 seven, I was going and I finally said, you need, I need your help. I need you to, I need you to quit. And they’d just come home and get me my aunt. She was doing the bookkeeping at the time anyway, which wasn’t much yet, but it was going to be a, we were doing our own payroll, doing everything like that. And so she did she quit game home. We started, you know, when we started the business, we had absolutely nothing. We were, we had no retirement, we had nothing, we didn’t know what we were going to do.
David Ellenwood (04:06):
Just put a lot of faith in God and said, here we go, you’re going to give this to you. And, and you know, we’re going to head down the road. By the end of the, by the end of the first year, we were probably doing about a half million dollars in sales. And that continued to double each year for the first four to five years of our business. We became the fastest growing company in the, in the country of our type, according to inc 5,500 at one time. And, hur first year of inc 500 was 2016. And we were, we were considered the fastest family owned business of our type in the country. And, mt’s continued to grow since then. We, you know, we look back and we she’s since retired, become a full-time grandmother. Um am in process of trying to be retired. I pretty much am these guys. I have a great crew here. Uhe’re now, you know, we went from, like I said, ground zero to, me now have about 600 employees, two companies, and, u,obably close to 500 clients. Um,, we continue to grow. We’re probably gonna do 11 or 12 million in gross sales this year. And, u,’s been a ride that I would never look back and say, you know, I don’t want to do that again. So it’s been, it’s been wonderful. It’s been wonderful.
Miriam Allred (05:26):
Incredible, well, thank you for telling us that backstory. It is so fun to hear those stories of how these agencies get started. So really appreciate that. And I love that you were really, you know, your first caregiver, you kind of were a one man band there for a little bit. Tell me about how that helped shape the business. Cause you being the caregiver, initially, how has that helped you? You know, how did that really help?
David Ellenwood (05:51):
Yeah. I mean, that’s a great question because it’s so important to who we are and it’s important, the role that I took as a leader of this company and you know, we have based a lot of our processes and policies on what I’ve done, which is nice. And like, I always tell people I’m not always the smartest guy in the room and I didn’t know the first thing about what I was doing, but I have, I think I have great instincts and those instincts kicked in a lot of common sense. And I, didn’t only, it didn’t only B w it, wasn’t only my, the first caregiver here. I did a lot of caregiving early on. I did a lot of it. And I also did the hiring and the firing. I, you know, we develop paperwork, our processes along the way.
David Ellenwood (06:41):
So what it, what it did for me and for this company is we have set up a very unique system of managers out there. We have 500, 600 employees now, 500 clients, and yet we still have a small business fields. You know, down-home feel because we have 15 managers out in the field that have little territories. And each of those managers their, their, their job descriptions basically are based on what I did as the owner of the company when I first started. So I have credibility and I have experienced no one coming to me and say, this is too hard. This is doesn’t work this way. This doesn’t work that way because I did it. I know. And they don’t do that. They come to me, they have totally respect, I think because, you know, I did the work, I did the work and that’s what I kind of expect from them, not even to the same degree, but pretty much that’s what, that’s our model. That’s what we based our model on.
Miriam Allred (07:41):
Definitely, definitely appreciate that. On the show, you know, we’ve got a variety of listeners, both, you know, agencies startup to 5 million plus we’ve got quite a variety, but I want to hear about some of your initial challenges in that first startup phase. You know, what were some of those biggest challenges that you can recall?
David Ellenwood (08:02):
Yeah, I think the well, the first challenge was let’s get clients. How do we get clients? Of course I was in sales. And, and so I had some ideas, but you still go out there. I mean, we didn’t know, you know, at first it was pretty insecure. We didn’t know what we were going to do if we’re going to make enough money, what it was going to take, how do we do that? And so that was our first challenge. The second challenge became how do we get employees? And, and what do we do with those employees? How do we get them to work? How do we get them there? We know we tried all different things, but those are the two biggest challenges to this day. Finding clients is not the challenge. It is finding employees in this work because we need so many of them. And,uand it’s a tough job. I always say that being a caregiver is one of the toughest jobs, because you have to go into somebody’s home and, and, and become a chameleon. You have to become that, that you’re taking care of. You have to be like them, and you do that for eight hours every day. That’s hard. Umo I, you know, I give a lot of, hhredit to my, to my caregivers out there because it is a hard job, but that, those were the biggest challenges early on.
Miriam Allred (09:11):
Definitely. And you, you hit it on the head as well as in that those are still challenges today. You know, that a lot of agencies are facing on recruitment challenges with both clients and caregivers, and it’s something that we’re still working through. But good to know that it, you know, it was a challenge initially, as far as anything looking back now, is there anything you would have done differently as an agency owner?
David Ellenwood (09:33):
You know, I’ve been asked that question a lot through the years and I always say, no, there’s nothing. I, first of all, I’ve made mistakes. Everybody’s gonna make mistakes, but I learned from those mistakes and that’s important. I think that’s a hugely important learn from those mistakes, but, you know, it’s nice because I I’ve done some help to other owners and stuff through the years, and I can help them to avoid those mistakes that I made. And, and when I’ve done anything different, I don’t think so. It’s been such a great ride. It’s been such a great business for us. I don’t think I would have done anything. I don’t know what else I, what I could have done differently to make it any better.
Miriam Allred (10:14):
No, that’s great. You’ve probably heard of the phrase failing forward, which I love, you know, failures lead us to what’s next and we’ve got to fail in order to move forward and succeed. So I think that’s a perfect response. So John, let’s hear a little bit about, or both from both of you, you know, the handoff. John is your son-in-law. So tell me a little bit about the transition as you’ve kind of stepped back a little bit, David, and you taking over John.
David Ellenwood (10:42):
Yeah. I’ll, I’ll start it. And then I’ll let John take all over this. Cause I always love to tell the stories of our early on, you know, I brought him in for a certain to do a certain job. It was going to be to, to guide our franchising part of our business, which we are not doing now, but that was my thought. I had a dream of franchising selling franchises. I wanted him wanted him to run that, but John was used to being in a leadership role and well, he should, because he’s got those skills, you know, he was a teacher, he was a coach. He was an AD. He did all those things. So coming in and working for his father-in-law, who was twice as age, wasn’t the easiest thing in the world. And so we butted heads a few times. I give John a ton of credit for taking a step back eventually because I’m as hard-headed as he is.
David Ellenwood (11:28):
And, and he would take a step back. He’s taking a lot of steps back and said, you know what? I’m going to listen. I’m going to learn. And that’s when things got to be in a good place where I can hand it off one time, he said to me, you keep interfering. He says, he says, mou’re like, herry Jones and, hhhe Cowboys, the Cowboys, he said, you just keep wanting to interfere. And I want to, I want to take us, I want to take us forward and you’re not letting me. I says, well, I’ll tell you what, John, you get me to the playoffs, give me the, the Superbowl. And I let go. So it was a great illustration for him because he’s a big football guy and we both are, but we are best of friends. Now we are, you know, we didn’t know each other that, well, when this all started up, he was my son-in-law, but they lived in Maryland. So we have gotten along great. And we do a great job together now. And I feel I am so confident in what he can do that, mou know, I can get out of here and do the things I like to do in life and let him run the show.
Miriam Allred (12:26):
Yeah. I love it. John, what would you add?
John Bennett (12:29):
Yeah, I agree with agree with everything. David said it was, it was definitely a little Rocky at first, just because we have, we have similar personalities with, with wanting to be in leadership and everything, and we did butt heads, but,uwhen we had that conversation and I had that analogy laid out there for me,uI kind of took that as a challenge and also a goal to get to that point. Uand, and it worked out, you know, we,uin, in late 2017,uwe kind of phased out franchising. We had a location in Chicago,ujust didn’t work out and kind of phase that out. And I,ubecame the executive director and started to get involved with, with local,usunny days. And,ujust really spent a lot of time picking David’s brain and asking him a lot of questions.
John Bennett (13:19):
One of the, one of the things that, mhat I try to do is ask a lot of questions. And sometimes I drive people nuts with asking questions, but, ms a kid. I remember reading a quote about Einstein and Einstein said, never be afraid to ask a question. And so that’s how you learn. So I asked a lot of questions, hnd still to this day, even though David’s mostly retired, m still probably call him once or twice a week and just run stuff by them, ask them questions. A lot of times I tell them, you know, this is how I would handle it. What are your thoughts? And he might say he agrees with that or suggest, you know, well, most of that makes sense. Did you think about this, or what do you think about trying this or, mut I, I still like to pick his brain and ask questions, mnd get his input on everything.
John Bennett (14:04):
So the transition was like, like he said, it was a little bumpy at first, but once we kinda got a really good group going and you know, really we, we, we doubled in size kind of every year. And we were at about 7,000 hours of care per week at the, at the start of 2018. And we’re pushing 14,000 now. We actually were at 13,000 at the beginning of the year. I haven’t grown as much this year due to due to the struggles with, with COVID-19, but are we almost doubled in size over two years? And,uI think a lot of it was just because we, you know, we really had a good, good system going on between the two of us and a good setup and a good relationship. And, ht’s been, it’s been pretty cool. A lot of people say, you know, Oh, you work with your father-in-law, that’s probably, you know, not enjoyable.
John Bennett (14:48):
And we really get along, you know, we get really well. And like David said, we’re really good friends. And the nice thing is, and, and other people listening to this might have a, you know, a relationship where they work with their family a business set up that way. And we’re really good about whatever the situation is going on at work. If we have any kind of disagreements or anything like that, it kind of stays at work. Not, not now, not so much cause cause David’s mostly retired. And we would talk about stuff, you know, at dinner and when we were together and everything, but we were pretty good about keeping work at work and then when it was family time, family time, and that was something that I think is really important to have, you know, there’s of course there’s going to be conversations about work when you’re, you know, during family time and vice versa.
John Bennett (15:32):
There’s conversations about family time during work, when you’re working with family, but we had a pretty good line. I feel like drawn there. So it’s, it’s been really, it’s been really enjoyable and definitely been a transition this year since he’s, he’s retired and I’ve kind of taken over. So it’s, it’s exciting, but also you know, it can be a little intimidating whenever, you know, you go from having you know, being second in command and having somebody that can be the final say to you being the one, making the final set of final call and,uexciting and intimidating. And I’ve kind of grown into that and,uthrow a lot more comfortable doing that now than I did back in March when I, when I took over.
Miriam Allred (16:09):
Yes. I love the transparency in how your relationship has developed personally and professionally because, you know, we’re in a family-oriented business, but at the executive level, we see agencies change hands and I think a lot of people go through what you’ve been through. So I appreciate the advice on, you know, leaving work at work. It has a time and a place and just separating that. Any other pieces of pieces of advice that you guys would give to owners that are going through this transition, any other, you know, learning lessons that you’ve learned that you could pass along?
John Bennett (16:46):
I think one been particularly with, with working with family is if there is something I didn’t like or was questioned or concerned about, I didn’t, I didn’t tell my wife and then her tell her mom and you know, my mother-in-law and then her child of David. And I feel you can cause a lot of family issues when you kind of go that route. If I had a question or a concern, I just sat down and David and I talked about it, I think that’s one of the, the, the best things that you can do, whether it’s a family member or not is having a, you gotta have a solid relationship and trust each other enough that you can just sit down and just be straight shooters with each other and say, Hey, this is my thoughts, you know, and not, you know, not have any hard feelings or emotions either way, just kind of lay it out there and, hou know, do what’s best for the company.
John Bennett (17:32):
You know, there’s times where, where maybe I had an idea that I thought was best for me, or was best for David, but it might not necessarily then what was best for the company. And that’s kind of the way we operated and make decisions is what’s what’s best for sunny days. And from that point on, you know, it’s, I don’t know, it’s made for a lot less not that we ever really had any drama anyways, but it’s, it’s kept for a drama free drama, free relationship, because we’re just very straightforward with each other. Definitely. Yeah, I think too, the other thing that advice I’d give to people would be, don’t be afraid. Don’t be afraid to try new things. Don’t be afraid to listen to your people that are working for you. I have I had told these guys, I get, I would get 10 ideas a day thrown at me and I might only use one of them.
John Bennett (18:20):
And I make sure that I I’m respectful of the, of these ideas on these people that come to me and say, what about this? What about that? And I know because of the position I’m in, I have to look at the overall, I have to look at the overall picture, the big picture. And so they don’t always understand that. And I have to, you know, explain it, but they never, no one, I don’t think ever felt like they couldn’t come to me with an idea. Ideas are what make this thing go. You know, I’m an idea type person. I’m a problem solver. So let’s put this out there, let’s take care of it. Let’s see what we can do with it. And if it doesn’t work, that’s where I talk about mistakes. You take, you do it, you try it. I’ve tried a lot of things. I wasn’t afraid to try anything and I’m afraid to spend a little money on it if I had to. So that would be probably a good piece of advice for any entrepreneur, probably anywhere don’t be afraid don’t be. And don’t be afraid to listen to the people that work for you.
Miriam Allred (19:16):
Great advice. Both of you. Great advice. I love that. I want to shift gears here slightly, John, you know, I want to hear a little bit more about your background. It’s always interesting to hear, you know, what leads to this occupation and your, your father-in-law’s kind of told the story, but tell me a little bit more about your background as a coach and as a teacher and maybe some lessons that you can apply from that experience that have helped attribute to some of your success today.
John Bennett (19:42):
Sure. Yeah. So I I’m formerly a statistics and geometry teacher and then head football coach. I still actually am a assistant football coach at the high school level. Part-Time and just really enjoy it. And I would say for me the biggest, the biggest thing that I kind of took away from, from those really both those positions was really trying to practice empathy. We just actually talked about this at our company meeting a couple of weeks ago and empathizing with someone and being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes. There’s a lot of different situations and scenarios out there where it’s easily, you can easily get frustrated. But if you put yourself in someone else’s shoes and kind of see what perspective they’re coming from, usually it helps you to relate to that person a and B make a decision that, you know, has it has more of a positive impact on everybody involved.
John Bennett (20:33):
You know, you, you may be dealing with a stressful situation where there’s a caregiver that our client’s family isn’t happy with. And, you know, the caregiver may think they’re doing a great job and being able to put yourself in that caregiver situation, see what they they’re through, what their thoughts are doing the same thing with the client with the client’s children and really trying to figure out all right, this is kind of how everybody feels about the situation. What’s the, what’s the best route moving forward, considering everyone’s perspective, you know, and you’re not always going to make decisions that everybody’s happy about and everybody likes, but at least being able to put yourself in those situations. So you, you really have a better understanding I think helps you make a better decision. And going back to what I talked about earlier one of the things I always encourage my students and my players to do and still do is how do you understand what someone else’s is situations like what it’s like to walk in their shoes? You have to ask questions. So I, I really encourage the idea of asking a lot of questions so you can really learn more.
Miriam Allred (21:32):
Yeah. I love the bit about empathy. I think as a society, we need more of that. And I think one of the reasons I love being in this industry is because the people are empathetic and caring and genuine. And I think as agency owners, time and time again, as I speak to other owners, it’s apparent that they have these attributes and radiate these attributes and that really leads to success. So appreciate that bit,uand totally agree there. Ukind of moving forward a little bit,uI know this is a little bit of a jumble, but what are some of the biggest challenges that you’re facing right now, John? I know this is kind of opening a can of worms, but maybe one to two of your biggest challenges right now and how you’re facing those.
John Bennett (22:19):
Yeah. So obviously a lack of staffing that’s, that’s, you know, industry wide struggle. That’s not something that we struggled with as much before, until this year with COVID we’re hiring anywhere last year. I think we average 46 hires per month which was pretty good for us. This year we were down to like 22 or 21. It’s just been a lot more difficult to recruit applicants, to become caregivers. You know, there’s a lot going on right now. People are concerned about, you know, going into someone’s home you know, catching COVID or spreading COVID if they have it, especially to, you know, a lot of the people we take care of are, are more vulnerable than other elderly or immunocompromised. And we really have to be careful with those situations. So people are just, just not applying as much.
John Bennett (23:07):
So we’ve had to kind of change our recruiting tactics and we made a couple tweaks with that. With, with Facebook recruiting our our digital marketers really, really done a good job with that lately. And we actually, we are at 45 people in the month of October, which was by far our highest total this year. So we’re starting to go back in the right direction. We just, we, we had to hide to make some changes and, you know, that’s, I would say that. And it’s probably the big one. And then just, just meeting the demand, you know, the lack of staffing kind of goes with, we get referrals from people coming that, that no longer want to be in nursing homes. And sometimes we’re not able to up with the demand or meet the demand,uwhich, which we don’t like to do.
John Bennett (23:49):
We like to accept every case we can. And if we have to turn down a case, that’s really rare. But there’s been a couple of times this year, we’ve had to turn down some cases and that’s not something that we really ever like to do because you know, our mentality. And I think everybody’s mentality as a home care agency should be that I’ll provide care for this person better than anybody else. And our ultimate goal is to make sure that these, these individuals have the care that they need and the best care that they can get. And we think that we’re, we’re the, you know, the best ones that can do that. I feel like every, every agency should have that same mentality. And so it’s been kind of difficult when we, when we’ve had to say, we don’t have anybody for this situation.
John Bennett (24:25):
We don’t have to say that often, but when we do that’s hard. So that’s, those are probably the biggest challenges is really not really goes back to a lack of lack of staffing. And the other thing that, that I’ve talked to talk to, actually, some, some people at home care pulse about is so figuring out what’s going on here, right? We’re, we’re w we lack staffing. We’re not able to recruit as many people as we typically recruit. Okay. We know there’s a lot of turnover in the industry, so we can’t recruit as many people that’s look at retention and really put an extra effort and focus on retention. And I mean, that’s something that’s important anyways, but we’ve really tried to try to make a couple of tweaks recently on retention and recognizing our caregivers and showing our caregivers some appreciation. And that’s something that we really feel like starting to make an impact on retention. You know, if you can’t, can’t hire as many people that keep the people we have, especially the people that are really outstanding caregivers. And we really, we have some people in our agency that are just excellent at their job. They just are really compassionate and they really care for the individuals that they’re taking care of. So that’s, that’s the two areas I would say is recruitment and retention. Uif you really boil it down to
Miriam Allred (25:33):
Definitely, and I wish I could just hand you the solution. I really do. Ubut I agree with what you’re saying. I think we, as an industry need to be more laser focused on retention. You know, our employees are so valuable to us right now and, and because the demand is there, you know, we’re, we’re shifting our focus to that, but I can’t emphasize that enough, what you’ve just said about really shifting gears to retention and, you know, providing incentives and just being there and hearing out from your employees is so important right now. So appreciate that aspect. U
John Bennett (26:11):
And the other thing I just, I just, what I say to add to that is, I know I keep, it’s kind of a theme for me, but asking questions, but, you know, one of the things that we put in place over the past year was a 401k,uwhich a lot of companies have. It’s not something that, that we had in smaller agencies, you know, may not be able to, to afford, afford that. And we just put a thing out there and we actually did a survey last year and the biggest request on, on,uthe survey responses for, for something that people would like to see as a 401k. Uso that’s something that we put in place and that came asking questions
John Bennett (26:44):
And what would help you stay here? Long-Term and a lot of people said, if there some kind of retirement, you know, that they can invest in that they’ll stay here. So not that a 401k is a solution completely for retention. But that’s something that I feel like we’ve, we’ve tried to put some things in place that that’ll help quality people want to stay here. Long-Term and the reason we knew that would work is because we asked the questions and that was the answer we got.
Miriam Allred (27:07):
Absolutely. And finding out what it is that your employees want, like you at other agencies, it may not be a 401k. It may be something else, but you’ve got to ask those questions and be in tune with what your employees really want. So glad you added that in love, everything that’s been said, kind of to wrap up. We’re almost short on time here. I’d love to hear from both of you. What’s motivating you right now. There’s a lot going on and stress levels are high, and, you know, there’s just a lot going on in the world right now, but I’d love to hear personally and professionally really what’s motivating you to keep going. And what drives you day to day?
David Ellenwood (27:48):
Well, for me, I guess you know, it’s, it’s growth. I get really excited about seeing growth, but I’m understanding one of the things about me as I’m not in this. Uuand it’s for just the money. I think the money is a means to an end. It helps us to help others. And we,uwe are in that process of helping others, we just actually were able to purchase some land and we’re going to start a, a ranch for underprivileged and special needs kids. UJohn and I are, and our families are partnering in that. So this, this business has evolved and more than just,uan income and the living we’ve done that, we’ve done that well. So now we can use the, the, the monies that come in so much of it to, to help others. We, we do,uThanksgiving for probably 40 or 50 of our clients. Every year we do a meal for them. We do,uI give turkeys to the, to the kids that,uwere John coaches, all the football team, their families get turkeys, and they’re, they’re needy community. UI can go on and on and on about what we do. I won’t do that, but just know that that’s my motivation. That’s what keeps me going in this time, my life.
Miriam Allred (29:06):
Thank you for sharing. John, what would you add?
John Bennett (29:14):
So, so two things,uthe first one is I like the challenge. Umo I took over as CEO on March 1st, and then two weeks later, we got hit with this pandemic. Um,d so I’ve kind of got baptized by fire and I, I, it is stressful, but I do like the challenge and there’s that quote out there. And I, I may butcher it a little bit, u,t it goes to the tune of smooth seas don’t make for a skilled sailor. And
John Bennett (29:42):
That’s just something that I think about often and, and feel that, you know, personally, it’s, it’s really challenging right now. And that’s only going to make, you know, me individually as a, as a CEO, a better CEO, but it’s going to make our company better. Being able to McGavock, navigate the waters, you know, through, through what’s going on right now. I guess another, another, another aspect, really, what I get excited about is I was a teacher because I wanted to have an impact on someone’s life. And this may sound kind of cliche sound cliche, but that’s, that’s really why I like this industry as well. You know, I went from working with high school seniors to senior citizens and knowing that what I do each day, even though I’m not directly out in the field, providing care can have a positive impact on someone’s life.
John Bennett (30:27):
That’s just really rewarding. I don’t think I could be in an industry that doesn’t have a an effect on somebody in a positive way. You know, as a teacher, I, I saw the difference that I was able to make in kids’ lives. And the other teachers were able to make in kids’ lives and just, just the relationships and how much that meant to people. And it just made people’s days better made their just entire existence better. And, you know, with our agency, knowing, knowing what we do for people, it’s just really nice to know that there’s people out there that wake up each day and the highlight of their day is whenever our caregiver comes in the door and gets to spend that time with them. And, you know, just, just really has a positive impact on their life. And they leave that person, you know, in a better place than they were whenever they got there that day. So just knowing that I can have an impact on that. And our company does that for individuals. It’s just really rewarding.
Miriam Allred (31:18):
Yeah. Wow. Thank you both so much, really appreciate everything that’s been said. And then that you’ve shared, I guess, just opening it up one last time. Is there any other advice that you’d give to agency owners at this time? Or anything else, additionally, that you’d like to share?
John Bennett (31:33):
Yeah, I would just like to say, you know, if you’re, you’re looking at from a business perspective put people first, if you put your people first, you put your clients that you provide care for first, you put your, your caregivers that you employ first as well, then profits will come. You know, we’re, we’re in this industry, obviously, if you’re running a business, you want there to be a profit, but if you’re in this industry, you, you should be in this industry because you care about people cause you want to have a positive impact on their lives. So if you’re trying to figure out how to improve your bottom line or anything like that, and prove your profit margin, your cashflow, if you put your people first and take care of them, then everything else will follow along. Okay.
Miriam Allred (32:11):
Definitely. Definitely. Thank you for sharing that, John. Well, that’s all that I’ve got. Like I said, thank you so much for taking the time and we wish the best moving forward. We appreciate the partnership we have with you all through Home Care Pulse, but you know, if there’s anything else we can do, don’t hesitate to reach out and thank you so much.
David Ellenwood (32:33):
Thank you. And we appreciate the time we really do. Yeah. Thanks a lot.
John Bennett (32:41):
Miriam Allred (32:41):
Thanks for listening to this episode with John Bennett and David Ellenwood. If you’d like to learn more about how to grow your agency like Sunny Days in Home Care, visit our website to learn more. Right now we’ve got an end of your promotion on both client and caregiver experience surveys and caregiver training. You can view the promotion at homecarepulse.com/2020-holiday-discounts/. Thanks again and we’ll see you next week.
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