We are embracing this franchise opportunity as a family. I love being able to work side-by-side with my wife, and even involve my children.
(PRWEB) June 29, 2015
Express Employment Professionals announces the opening of three southern California Express offices by U.S. military veterans.
Brian Gilden was a U.S. Marine for 20 years, who piloted a CH-53E “Super Stallion” helicopter, flew 138 missions in Iraq, and won the Navy-Marine Corps Medal for extraordinary heroism. He opened an Express office in the aptly named Mission Valley, CA, territory.
Eric Cross served 22 years in the U.S. Marines, and was deployed to more countries than many people ever dream of seeing, from Dubai to Somalia, including a total of 30 visits to Thailand. He opened an Express office in Murrieta, CA.
Jon Noceda served as a personnel specialist in the U.S. Navy for 22 years, including two years recruiting medical officers. His Express office is located in Chula Vista, CA.
A New “Day Job”
After 20 years in military service, how does a veteran make the transition to employment in civilian life? For these three southern California veterans turned franchise owners, they now are trying to help as many people as possible find good jobs by helping as many clients as possible find good people.
Gilden has found that the best fit for his military experience is franchise ownership. He's is not alone. According to VetFran, a strategic initiative of the International Franchise Association (IFA), more than 5,600 veterans have become franchise business owners since 2011.
Being a franchisee was a natural choice for Cross as well. And given his recruiting experience, opening a franchise in the employment industry was practically a no-brainer for Noceda.
The Benefits of Leadership
What makes this franchise opportunity a good fit for veterans?
“As a leader, I always felt my top job was to keep people employed and satisfied, and if there were things they needed to shore up such as more education or other skills I would help them develop their potential,” Cross said. “Express lets me invest in people the same way. And I find it highly rewarding to be able help people find the right job and to provide the right people for businesses.”
David Lewis, vice president of franchising for Express Employment Professionals, says veterans like Gilden, Cross and Noceda have the qualities that make Express franchisees successful.
“Brian, Eric and Jon exhibit strong leadership qualities and understand from their military careers how important it is to follow proven processes that lead to success,” Lewis said.
Training Recruits, Not Robots
“When I was looking at franchises, the structured approach that Express takes really appealed to me. They recruit the way we recruited in the military, with strong policies and procedures for finding the right talent,” Noceda said. “Following rules and regulations from headquarters is right in my comfort zone. And Express headquarters also provides the support we need as franchisees.”
Gilden is quick to point out that some employers misunderstand military training, believing it produces “mindless robots,” but nothing could be further from truth.
“Military training teaches the perfect combination of being able to follow a strategy and plan, with the leadership, autonomy and intelligence you need to adjust to current conditions, whether on the battlefield, or in a business marketplace with its own economy and characteristics,” he said.
The Importance of Loyalty
Why does franchising prove more rewarding for many veterans than working in corporate America?
“Veterans find that corporate does not always include the level of loyalty, leadership and teamwork found in the military,” Gilden said. “The Marine Corps is a premiere leadership and teamwork organization. When you are used to that, it is difficult to work in an environment where people may be in it for themselves, without any sense of loyalty or interest in true teamwork. An Express franchise offers the opportunity to be that leader, to train an excellent team and to help people. I get an intangible good feeling in my heart when I place people.”
Cross agrees, and notes that when he was deployed to countries all over the world, his family learned to make sacrifices, yet continued to operate as a team.
“We all believe that, when one member of the team is not there – everyone picks up their share of the workload. Life doesn’t stop,” Cross said. When he retired from the Marines, Cross worked some in the private sector, but discovered that path also meant many hours away from family.
“That is an important thing for me, when I looked into Express,” Noceda said. "After being away from my family in the Navy – sometimes for six to seven months at a time, I liked the family-friendly business model and the 5-day work week. After serving in the military, I am no stranger to hard work or long hours. But if I chose a franchise in another industry, like the food industry, weekends are the most important time in that industry, and I would never have that time with my family.”
Finding the Right Fit
“Express is a perfect match for me in that regard,” Gilden said. “The company encourages all franchisees to be involved in their communities and give back to others. When I was researching opportunities, the Express franchisees I spoke with also praised the company’s plan, which, if followed, always leads to success.”
Cross says he researched many business opportunities before deciding on Express.
“One of the most important things that Express offers is a solid structure,” Cross notes. “You get to be an independent franchise owner, but the standards and process control they offer is significant. The hierarchical structure of the company feels normal for me. It is driven by policies and procedures and there is a corporate help desk. The bottom line is, if you follow through, the system is proven to work by more than 725 franchisees who have put their faith in it, with excellent results.”
Express was recently named the No. 2 franchise brand for veterans by Entrepreneur magazine. The staffing company is also ranked number 71 on the Entrepreneur Franchise 500® list and named one of "America's Top Global Franchise Systems."
About Express Employment Professionals: Express Employment Professionals puts people to work. It generated $2.85 billion in sales and employed more than 456,000 people in 2014. Express ranks as the largest franchised staffing company and second largest privately held staffing company in the United States. Its long-term goal is to put a million people to work annually. For information about owning an Express franchise, visit ExpressFranchising.com.