We sat down with American Recruiters’ newest Franchisee, Kathy Pape and found out all about what makes her such a unique and successful businesswoman, her competitive nature and why she’s such a great fit for our company….and yours.
Our team met with her for a short interview, while Kathy was on a recent visit to our Corporate office.
It’s a great read. Take a look:
AR: American Recruiters
KP: Kathy Pape
AR: Hi Kathy, well first off, welcome from the Great White North. The warm weather must be a welcome break from what you’re used to at this time of year, in Michigan.
KP: Yes, that’s true. Although it’s not quite as warm as I expected, but yes, it is very welcome.
AR: So, welcome to the American Recruiters family and congratulations on being our newest Franchise. How has your first few days with the new team been?
KP: Well thank you, I’m so excited to be here, with this group. Everyone here at the Corporate Office has been wonderfully welcoming and I’m eager to learn new things from them, and certainly to get a chance to share what I bring to the table as well.
AR: Well that’s a great place for us to start, to let everyone get to know you a little bit better. As we said, you’re visiting from the north. Your franchise is actually located in southern Michigan, correct?
KP: Yes, thank you so much. To your question, yes, my office is in Adrian, Michigan. Adrian is about 70 miles or so, South-west of Detroit, but obviously, as you already know, I’ll also be working with Employers and Candidates on a national level from my office. So, my business won’t be limited to Michigan.
AR: Your warm-weather clients will be happy to know that they don’t have to make a winter trip to Michigan to work with you…
KP: Exactly, yes. They’ll never know the difference. Being so well connected by phone, Skype, FaceTime, email or text…you’re never very far away. Feels like you’re down the street…or down the hallway. Now, if someone wants to come to Michigan to visit, I’m not going to discourage them…just be sure to bring some warm clothes and watch out for the snow-mobiles.
AR: I know that you have an extensive background in the Senior Living or Long-Term Care field, but what was it that made you want to become a Franchise Owner with American Recruiters? What was it that spoke to you and made you say “yes, this is for me”?
KP: Yes, I’ve been in the field for a long time and I’ve experienced the industry from both sides of the table, so to speak. I started my own staffing company over a year ago to try to help bridge what I saw as staffing gap in Healthcare, but I knew I wanted to incorporate the input of experts, to continue to expand on that dream I’ve embarked on.
It’s funny how things work out. My first contact with American Recruiters was actually through a recruiting call — for myself. Kelly had called and talked to me about an Administrator position that she was trying to fill. But once we started talking and she found out what I was doing, and we got talking about American Recruiters franchising and put me in contact with their owner, Gino. I found him to be extremely knowledgeable and engaging and was quick to share his enthusiasm for the industry. And right there, I immediately knew that I wanted to somehow be associated with this company and want to be able to take advantage of our collective skills and resources.
Gino is just so very accommodating, respectful and open to learning about my former business. We are excited to learn each other’s experiences in the industry and know that together, both of our businesses can benefit from what we bring to the table, as a team. Our collective services definitely fill a critical need in the healthcare recruiting and staffing industries.
AR: Tell me a little more about your unique experience and what you might consider your career highlights.
KP: Oh wow, career highlights… I’ll start by saying that I began working as a Business Office Manager for Promedica in a small nursing home near my home. While working there, I also advanced my education and became a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator. I worked really hard and was hired as an interim Administrator with Promedica. I ended up staying on as an Administrator with this nursing home for 8 years. I don’t know if anyone other than me would consider this a highlight, but I do. I’m proud of that. I’m not afraid to work hard in order to get where I want to go.
In that job, hands down, my very best day was when we all came together as a team; staff and residents alike and put on an awesome Holiday party. The collaboration and fellowship was so heart-warming and I knew that I had made a difference and that I truly belonged.
Beyond that, I’ve worked hard to develop a career that’s well-rounded and yet focused on results in the field of Nursing. Though I am not a nurse myself, I would like to do my part in bringing the nursing industry back. To have it be a career track that many will aspire to and will work hard to be involved in and be rewarded for that
AR: What do you think makes you better than your counterparts in the field of finding and hiring the best talent?
KP: I like to think that it’s my ability, as an LTC Business Office Manager, then to a facility Administrator and then to the other side of the desk to become a successful Staffing agency owner, who is a great match-maker for candidates and employers. I work extremely hard at finding the right fit in order to have the position filled on a long-term basis. I don’t like to just throw people into positions based on how their resume looks on paper. I need to get to know the people. To be sure that they’re the best fit for each individual job and the culture of that workplace or department. I want the right fit from both sides, creating a partnership where both the employee and the employer excel, together.
AR: How have you prepared yourself to be here this week and to get your franchise moving?
KP: I was happy to see that, one of the American Recruiters’ taglines is “be in business for yourself, but not by yourself”. That was actually very important to me. The combination, or pooling of our resources. I am supremely confident in what I bring to the table, and like I said that’s my specialty to match the right candidate to the right job. This franchise allows me to combine my best, with their best. Getting ready for this week was a whirlwind. I’ve been researching how others work so that I can identify and model the quality in presence, experience, and expertise that AR has to offer.
AR: It certainly sounds like you’re on your way. One thing I like to ask people is to ask them to tell me about their very best day on a job. And hear about why. So, here I’m posing that question to you. What was your very best day and why is it so special to you?
KP: Okay, wow. Great question… Let’s see…I would say it’s the simple things. Like hearing someone say that I did so much for them and that I made them feel important, and seeing them believe that they really could do what it took… Those have always been the times when my heart was warmed, and I knew that I’d made a difference. Whether it be a resident, family member, or a staff connection I have made, I am always interested in what each person brings to the table and I appreciate the diversity in the world.
AR: So what would you say are 3 basic things that light a fire in you?
KP: One: putting my best work forward. Two: helping candidates become and feel prepared and confident in the process. Three: being better – whether it is better than the day before or better than last hour, I always want to be better. I guess that’s a pretty good list…. I might also add I may be a little competitive.
AR: What are you most looking forward to in your first year as a new franchise owner?
KP: Wow, so many things. The very first thing would be learning the specific strategies and processes that make AR one of the best in the business. From there…teaching others how to tap into the temporary- staffing side of the industry. And then…. running a successful franchise in Adrian. Did I mention that I was competitive?
AR: That competitive gene, is a good one to have in this industry…as you know. It like I said earlier, it looks like you’re on your way and you’ve got a great set of milestones to achieve. We’re so excited and happy to have you as part of our family of Franchises and look forward to celebrating every single one of those milestones with you.
KP: Aww, thanks…. should we talk about the milestones for years 2 through 20 now or wait for that….? I mentioned the competitive thing, right…?
AR: We love a team that’s ready for the future. I know you’ve got to run, so we’ll wind down here. Let’s finish up with our lightning round…. You’ll answer with the first thing that comes to mind… Ready…?
KP: Ready. Let’s do this.
Best advice you’ve gotten from a mentor:
KP: Don’t let your tongue get stepped on
First concert you went to:
Favorite cheat meal:
Favorite movie of all time:
KP: “The Wizard of Oz”
Last book you read:
KP: “Devil in Winter”
What makes you laugh:
KP: I can find humor in most things
If you were a relief pitcher for the Detroit Tigers, what song would you want playing in the stadium as you ran in from the bullpen?
KP: “The Eye of the Tiger”
AR: Thanks for taking the time with us Kathy. Best of luck to you.
KP: This was fun. Thank you very much.