Jul 11, 2016

Behind the Scenes: Annual Conference Prep!

It’s our favorite time of the year again…time for the Tippi Toes Annual Franchise Conference!

Our conference is the one time in the year when all the Tippi Toes franchise owners gather in one place to work, play and serve together! This year we are meeting for our 6th conference in beautiful, vibrant and exciting Chicago, IL!

To ensure that we assemble in a cool spot for our conferences Sarah and I usually scout out the cities we are considering to get a loose agenda and plan for the awesome 4-day meeting.  This year we both quickly fell in love with Chicago!

Our conference allows franchise owners from California to DC and everywhere in between to come together to work, play and serve.

We start with work which, when you own a Tippi Toes franchise, you will find that the word “work” actually has a positive connotation!  Our work includes hearing about the new, big, exciting projects that we as corporate will be rolling out in the coming year, learning new dances and curriculum for classes, learning about business and management concepts as well as learning from experts in various subjects.  All of this is to further enhance each business owner’s current company!

The play part of our conference usually includes a mix of group and individual fun, free playtime!!  Hey, we are all dance teachers at heart so we can’t go four whole days without playtime!  Whether it is going to a baseball game, shopping, going on a scavenger hunt, a boat tour or laying by the pool… we always schedule in time for FUN!

community outreachThe final piece of our conference is about serving others.  We started this part of our conference in 2014 and really love this aspect of the conference.  Giving back to people in the communities that we visit for our conference is not only good for the heart, it is a terrific way for our owners to work together for a great cause!

This year we are gathering supplies for Mercy Home in Chicago. The Mercy Home offers a loving home to children in Chicago as well as after-school care and mentoring programs.  They care for as many as 130 children at a time.  Their largest need is for hygiene products for the children and our owners have spent the last couple months gathering goods for them.

Our conference is for owners and their spouses if possible.  Many times the husbands will skip out on meetings so they can go check out local attractions, bars, or restaurants while us ladies jump feet first into business!  Though we aren’t always sure what they are up to, they always seem to come back to the hotel happy and with some fun stories!

As we explored Chicago last fall, Sarah and I picked our hotel overlooking Chicago River which offers a perfect setting to play on an architectural boat tour and a historic building for our annual awards dinner at the Tribune Tower!  We have been excited about this weekend since last September!!!

Speaking of The Awards Dinner—it is the special night when Tippi Toes Corporate awards outstanding franchise owners with various awards.

The most prestigious award is the Tippi Toes Franchise Owner of the Year (which two of our most fun/sister owners have renamed the OOTY award)!  The OOTY goes to the franchise owner who has had the best year in terms of objective numbers, as well as exceptional subjective outcomes in all areas of business.

The Rookie of the Year goes to the new owner who had the best first year, which is a major honor and accomplishment!  The Tippi Award goes to the owner who exemplified the essence of Tippi Toes day in and day out through showing love, joy, hard work and positivity to those around her!

The Wisdom Award is awarded to the owner that receives the most votes from other owners.  This honor is given to the person who shares her wisdom with others and helps other owners navigate their business!

From picking the location, the hotel and the awards dinner site to finding ways to work, play and serve together – the annual Tippi Toes Franchise Conference is a magical four days!  Our owners come year after year because the lessons they learn from one another are priceless and the fun they have together is endless!

We always leave the conference feeling energized, excited and ready to bring joy to kids through dance and, of course, with a ton of new stories and inside jokes!!