Pinch A Penny Franchisees Train To Be Pool Experts in Intensive Course
Mike LawhonFranchise Owner
Pinch A Penny is a turnkey business in that corporate handles leases, construction, legal services, marketing and more. Pool School teaches franchise owners everything else they need to know to take care of their customers.
At Pool School, Pinch A Penny franchisees become the experts in pools and spas. But very few of them start out with expertise in swimming pools: 90% of franchisees had little to no pool experience before becoming Pinch A Penny owners. Candidates do not need experience to be successful franchisees.
Pool School is an all-encompassing program that includes everything from the chemistry of pools to fixing pool motors to legal issues and accounting. Pinch A Penny typically runs 10 sessions of Pool School per year.
By the end of the course, you will have earned a certified pool operator license, a world-recognized certification, and an advanced pool and spa service certificate, which will enable you to get a contractor’s license in one year rather than the usual four years. A contractor’s license is needed to install pumps and other equipment.
“We spend a lot of time talking about installing equipment, cleaning pools and more. It’s not just retail,” says Troy Lindbeck, Vice President of Operations. “It’s also about everything you do in the field.”
If that sounds like you will spend a lot of time poolside, it’s because you will. There are three pools on the Pinch A Penny campus in Clearwater. Pool School classes test the water, fix what’s broken, learn the proper way to clean a pool and more as they work their way through an extensive curriculum.
“There is so much information and hands-on training going at Pool School that you can’t wait to get to work after four weeks,” Lindbeck says.
Pool School also offers ongoing education to franchise owners who want to add new services and revenue streams to their locations. Owners can return to Pool School to train on ancillary service offerings, such as installing lighting, pressure washing and pool resurfacing.
Troy Lindbeck, Vice President of Operations
Chemistry is a big part of the training, but you won’t be asked to memorize the periodic table. You will use what you learn every day during training and throughout your career with Pinch A Penny.
“We spend the whole first week on chemicals. We want Pinch A Penny owners to be physicians of pools – they need to know how to care for them, how to diagnose and cure their problems,” says Lindbeck.
For instance, in Pool School, franchisees learn about Stop Yellow, an algaecide sold by Pinch A Penny retail stores. They start with a PowerPoint presentation on algae blooms and how Stop Yellow works to clear them. Then they go out to the pool and learn the proper way to use Stop Yellow. Next they check out Stop Yellow on the Chem Wall – where there are examples of all the chemicals that Pinch A Penny manufactures and sells. Then, they visit an on-site training store and perform the seven-point water test to see when to prescribe Stop Yellow. And finally, they work in a local store for a few days, where they might actually sell Stop Yellow and explain to customers how to use it.
Pool School instructors also teach the mechanics of swimming pools and spas. You’ll learn how to install and repair pool pumps, heaters and more equipment.
“We want Pinch A Penny owners to be physicians of pools – they need to know how to care for them, how to diagnose and cure their problems.”
Lindbeck tells new franchisees: “We are not going to let you go out there and not do a good job. If you leave here, you’ve got my cell phone number and my team’s cell phone numbers. You can call us anytime.”
Although Lindbeck does field plenty of questions from new franchisees, he stresses that franchisees leave Pool School well-prepared to launch a successful business. “There may be an item you don’t recognize or a situation you don’t know how to fix, but that’s OK. You are really ready to open and run your business when you leave here.”
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