An Interview With Charlie Katz
Custom service is the future — At Comfort Keepers, we have always seen the value in providing individualized services and care plans. Today, consumers expect services and products that are catered to their needs. One-size-fits-all is a hard sell for a service-based business in today’s world. As much as possible, customize your offerings to give your clients the best quality service.
Aspart of my series about the “5 Things You Need To Know To Create a Successful Service Business”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Carl McManus, CEO of Comfort Keepers.
Thank you so much for joining us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started?
I started with Comfort Keepers in 2014. We have both company-run locations and a large network of franchisees.
In my previous role with YUM Brands I had the opportunity to support more than 4000 Taco Bell franchises across the country. Working with small business owners is important to me — I am proud to play a role in supporting these dedicated, hard working entrepreneurs.
Comfort Keepers was started by a registered nurse, Kristina Butler, who saw a need for providing care and support for seniors outside of the hospital and in the home. She started this company in her kitchen, and it has grown to an international brand with over 700 locations worldwide. I am very happy to be part of that success.
In addition, I believe the work we do with seniors is vital. We give older adults the option to remain in the home they love as they age. I can’t think of a more noble goal than bringing joy to seniors and helping them live their best, most independent lives.
What was the “Aha Moment” that led you to think of the idea for your current company? Can you share that story with us?
As I mentioned, this company was started by our founder, Kristina Butler. She started the company in 1998.
At the time she was a registered nurse working in home healthcare. Through her work, she saw a need for non-medical help at home for her patients. Sometimes the requests she received were simple — an errand for a loaf of bread or a quart of milk. Other times, it was companionship to fight social isolation — a few minutes of conversation that ended up brightening a senior patient’s day. Other needs included assistance around the house, transportation, medication reminders, and more. Kris and her former husband founded Comfort Keepers to provide a solution. In 1999, they began franchising Comfort Keepers offices and became the franchisor, Comfort Keepers, Incorporated. In 2000, the Clums sold majority share of Comfort Keepers, Incorporated to investors, and created CK Franchising, Inc.
Kris truly found a need in the market and created a successful business to meet that need.