I have experienced the many benefits of becoming a Kumon franchisee
Instructor Rinu Shah always knew she wanted to make a difference in her community, and with Kumon, she found she could do just that. After a 20-year career in banking and finance, Rinu decided that it was time to make a bold career shift and aspired to pursue a career that allowed her to combine her personal philosophies and existing business expertise. In 2018, she became a Kumon franchisee and took over the Northwood study centre in north-west London, which has been established in the community for over 20 years! Now, just over one year in, we asked her about her experience of becoming a Kumon franchisee and running her own maths and English study centre.
Explaining her journey from banking to becoming a Kumon Instructor, Rinu said “In my 20-year career, I covered various roles from banking retail management, operations and financial risk and compliance. I had always set myself a goal to have my own business one day and, through my employers, I worked to gain as much business knowledge and educate myself with many transferable skills. Over several years, I explored various business options, from consultancy in banking and finance, to setting up an import/export business in my home country of Kenya. I was pulled towards working in education most as I knew that would enable me to achieve one of my goals; contributing to society and helping to make a difference. As a mum of three children I’d already begun to see the importance of setting good educational foundations and I could see how changing my career to the field of education would be really rewarding for me in the longer term.”
Before becoming a Kumon Instructor, Rinu researched various franchised education businesses and attended some of the larger shows and exhibitions. This exposed her to a range of education companies, their ethos and educational methods, although she quickly became most interested in Kumon; “I really identified with Kumon’s study methods and Instructor training. Being one of the larger and more well-known franchisors, I liked the package of support that they were able to offer me in starting my business. I liked the feeling that I would be both the Instructor and the business owner, so that I would be fully engaged with the business and my customers.”
Rinu benefits from the Kumon franchisee relationship in a number of ways. Joining the largest supplementary education franchisor, there were clear processes and support mechanism that helped to ease any teething issues that she faced when starting her business. Also, the low initial franchise fee enabled her to get her feet on the ground as it was not a huge financial burden for her to carry. In addition, she expresses that her initial training and ongoing continuous developmental training has ensured that she continues to grow in her instruction – “As well as my students’ development, I am encouraged to look after my own ongoing professional development too. I’ve learned so much about myself and have been able to use existing skills and develop a whole raft of new ones. Now I know that I am well-equipped to take on the challenge of working with children as young as two years old as well as older teenage students who are working towards completing the study programmes.”
Having run the Northwood study centre for over a year, she believes that “Franchises are a great way to enter into business and with care they will also have good value for many years to come."