Millie is just 6 months into running a franchise with us, and she's hit the ground running! Not only does she have brilliant performance skills, qualifications behind her (Millie has a degree in Early Years Development and Education and a Master’s in Play and Therapeutic Play) and the determination to succeed, she's also incredibly likeable! Children are, quite simply, drawn to her. Add Pyjama Drama into the mix and we have the start of a very exciting business.
We asked Millie to give us an insight into the running of Pyjama Drama South Worcestershire - the highs and the lows. For anyone who's thinking about starting their own business with Pyjama Drama, it's a must-read.
What do you enjoy most about running your own business?
All of it! Having the freedom to decide when and where I will be teaching, the satisfaction when you sign and secure contracts with customers, that incredible feeling when someone tells you how much they love your classes!
Why did you choose to run a business with Pyjama Drama?
Because Pyjama Drama is the absolute best! The program itself is utterly brilliant, there really is nothing else like it. I honestly believe that every single child out there could benefit from Pyjama Drama in one way or another. It’s fun, it’s educational, it’s engaging, it’s exciting, and ultimately it allows children to express themselves and to learn in a way that is safe and natural to them.
What challenges have you faced since starting the business and how have you overcome them?
Personally, I hate numbers. I’ve never been very confident when working with numbers so that was and continues to be, a bit of a challenge for me. However, it’s a necessity so I’ve had to just get on it with it and persevere. Head Office are fantastic though and they talked me through all of the financial stuff step by step (sometimes more than once!) I know that they are only a phone call away if I do find myself in a numbers flap again.
How long have you been running the business, and are you where you wanted to be?
I’ve been running my business now for just under 6 months, so I’ve still got a way to go yet in terms of being where I want to be, although I think I will always push myself to go further. After a successful summer, I am feeling very optimistic about the new term and I believe so strongly in Pyjama Drama that ‘failing’ just isn’t an option.
Can you describe a typical day in the life of a Pyjama Drama franchisee?
Exciting, fun, lively, challenging, and sometimes exhausting, but in the best way possible! I get to meet so many different people on a daily basis, and I love that! No two days are the same because every session you teach is different somehow (thanks to it being a child-led program!) Typically, it goes like this...Get up, get dressed and get my red trainers on then set off in the car. Usually, the car journey consists of warming up my voice and a quick run through of the session(s) I’ll be teaching. The day flies by because you’re just having too much fun to notice the time! Of course, some of the time is allocated to ‘officey’ jobs, but again that feeling of satisfaction and achievement makes it all worthwhile!
Can you give an example of a ‘good news story’ where you’ve worked with a child and seen Pyjama Drama making a real difference?
I did a taster session in a local nursery, and they asked me to come back and do another session soon after. During the taster, the staff explained to me that one little boy (probably 2 years old) was very shy and nervous around new people so he probably wouldn’t join in. They were right, the little boy didn’t join in. However, when I went back a few weeks later, that same little boy was there again. Throughout the session, the little boy was watching very intently, and as we were ‘searching for the missing caterpillar’ the little boy stood up and said, ‘I’ve got him, he’s over here in my bed!’ He then proceeded to join in with the rest of the session with his new found confidence. The staff told me after the class that they had never in the 18 months he’d attended the nursery seen him join in with a group activity, especially not with an external organisation. That’s the magic of Pyjama Drama for you!
What would you say to someone who’s considering starting a franchise with Pyjama Drama?
If you love working with children and have tonnes of enthusiasm and energy… do it! It really is the most rewarding job, to see the excitement and happiness on children’s faces within the sessions, not to mention being able to watch them grow and develop with Pyjama Drama, it really is the best job in the world!