Inspiration Learning Center – Inspiring Women, Inspire the Future

Mix a strong business mindset with highly qualified educators, and you’ve got a formula for success! A recent Canadian survey found enterprises owned by women experience faster growth rates relative to male-owned businesses. An impressive 70% of franchisees at Inspiration Learning Center , a tutoring and private school franchise, are female.

To celebrate women, let’s take a closer look at two strong, female immigrants and entrepreneurs. Please meet:

  • Marian Cai, Owner of ILC Markham East – a single mom and multi-unit owner of two ILC franchises
  • Galium Ko, Owner of ILC Oakville – has been tutoring for years before deciding to make it a business and own an ILC location

Continue reading to learn more about how these women became successful franchisees and how they are helping students excel!

 

Interview with Marian Cai

What was your profession before you got started with Inspiration Learning Center?

Before I got involved with Inspiration Learning Center, I was a University teaching assistant. I obtained my Masters in English and decided I wanted to pursue a career in Canada. However, with no previous work experience in Canada, it was very difficult to get started. Eventually, I ended up working in administration for Angel at the center.

What was the reason you decided to invest in a franchise?

I have been with Inspiration Learning Center since 2008, and being involved with this company for so long, I have witnessed the success of its business model for many other franchisees of Inspiration. Many of the aspects of the business model work well with the values I have for education including great communication and growth.

Was there a specific reason Inspiration Learning stood out to you?

There was a time period in which I left Inspiration Learning for an opportunity to work with other education start-ups, but alas, they failed. From this experience, I decided to come back to Inspiration, and I have the utmost respect for Angel’s leadership.

Do you believe there is a reason women are attracted to the franchising business model?

As a single mother, support is something I find very alluring. Becoming a franchisee of Inspiration Learning Center comes with a lot of support for learning center owners. Also, in comparison with other franchise businesses, Inspiration has relatively flexible work hours for business owners as well. This is important to me, as I’m a single mother and want to still be involved with my family, while being an independent business person.

How did Inspiration Learning help you in the initial stages in setting up your first location?

A lot of training was provided to me when I first opened my business. I got to learn the fundamentals of business in education and learned a lot about how to be an effective educator. I’ve been an Inspiration Franchisee since 2017 and even to this day, I still receive support and training from Angel and Inspiration Learning Center. Whenever I have questions about running my school, I know I can always contact Angel to help me through it. I also get client referrals from HQ.

How many locations do you own?

I currently run 2 locations.

What is your favourite part about owning your own business and working with Inspiration Learning?

It is a lot of fun to be able to run your own business while working with other franchise owners at Inspiration. I’ve always had a love for education, and being able to work with children, families, and teachers, I’ve found my experience to be exceptionally enjoyable. All the franchise owners of Inspiration feel like family.

What would be your advice to other future franchisees?

Having to deal with a business in education, it’s important to have attention to detail. You’ll often have to find a balance between running an educational facility and a private business. You must also have to have a passion for not only education but learning as well. Every day is an opportunity to learn something new at Inspiration Learning Center.

 

Interview with Galium Ko

What was your profession before you got started with Inspiration Learning Center?

I am passionate in just about every aspect of education, from the administration framework to mentoring scholars. I obtained a master’s in education at Windsor University and worked at Kumon as a tutor for many years. It was at this time I realized I wanted to do something more with my knowledge and experience in teaching children.

What was the reason you decided to invest in a franchise?

Becoming financially independent was something that was important to me as well. I wanted to be able to rely on myself to bring income into the family, and I realized franchising was a great opportunity for me to be able to do that.

Was there a specific reason Inspiration Learning Center stood out to you?

As someone who grew up in China, I understand how rigid eastern teaching mythologies can be for the student. Learning about Angel’s East meets West teaching strategies piqued my interest, and I now use these methodologies to teach my students.

Do you believe there is a reason women are attracted to the franchising business model?

Angel understands what it is like to be a female business owner, and what types of support we’re looking for. I feel that working with Angel and her fellow franchisees allows me to be an independent business owner and helps me grow.

How did Inspiration Learning Center help you in the initial stages in setting up your first location?

I purchased an existing corporate store from Angel, so I didn’t have to deal with the set-up process on my own. As I didn’t have to start my business from scratch, there were other areas I was able to focus on when starting up. Over time, I found success running my business through trial and error and with the support of Angel by my side. Transition into becoming a business owner was made easy with the help of the franchise as well.

How many locations do you own?

There was one point in which I was the owner of two locations. However, I found that my attention was better served for just 1 and decided to downsize back to 1.

What is your favourite part about owning your own business and working with Inspiration Learning?

My favorite part is that I can meet new people every day and work in the field that I love. This journey has been nothing short of amazing, and I’ve gotten closer to all my fellow franchisees at Inspiration Learning Center.

What would be your advice to other future franchisees?

It’s crucial to be able to multitask because having your own franchise comes with a lot of responsibility. Be detail oriented and find a happy medium between running the center as a place of learning as well as a business. Let your passion for education allow you to learn and grow with every experience, because there’s always something new to learn.