4th March 2015

After five years trading as a Pyjama Drama franchisee, Emma Knighton from Trafford (left) has renewed her agreement for a further term. Good news for Emma and great news for the hundreds of children she teaches each week, and to mark the occasion we decided to ask her five big questions about the last (and the next!) five years...

1. In five words, how would you sum up the last five years as a Pyjama Drama franchisee?
Exhilarating, challenging, rewarding, hard work, amazing!

2. What have been the main challenges for you over the past five years?
Any new venture is a learning curve and for me I had to learn how to manage my time as a mum to three children, whilst growing and developing my business. Luckily I have fantastic support in my child minder who has always been on hand to help out with the boys, enabling me to focus on the business whilst knowing they were in safe hands. Once I'd learned how to 'switch off' when I wasn't at work, I was able to fully enjoy my time with the children - the best of both worlds!

3. What has been the highlight of your last five years in business?
I spent a long time 'knocking on the doors' of schools in my territory to show them just how fantastic the Pyjama Drama programme is. Schools are busy places so this required dedication and a thick skin! One of the highlights for me was when, all at the same time, a number of schools said 'yes' and suddenly I had more work than I could handle! I saw a significant increase in my monthly turnover and had to start looking for additional staff.

4. Why did you decide to renew your franchise agreement for a further five years?
Because I fully believe in the ethos of Pyjama Drama and witness on a daily basis what a powerful learning tool the programme is. I couldn't get behind something I didn't truly believe in and I am passionate about the work we do. I also love being part of a team of inspirational franchisees who support and help each other, whilst having autonomy over my own business and being able to run it to fit around my life and family.

5. What are your plans, hopes and dreams for your next five years in business?
My plans are to expand further into my territory by taking on a team of session leaders. Although I still plan to teach (I love teaching too much to give it up completely!), I will take more of a development role and spend my time securing new contracts and establishing new classes for my employees to teach. I am really, really excited about the future of my business and am delighted to be on board for a further five years!

Pic: Emma (left) with fellow franchisee, Sarah Watt