Some say that business acumen and a talent for recruiting quality people is in one’s blood. In the case of Chelsea Renno, one of Rhino 7’s most successful Franchise Development Managers, it might be literally true. Although she’s only been with us a little more than a year, her background coming from a family of entrepreneurs and a successful track record in the franchise industry, has made her an invaluable resource – especially when it comes to her assigned business in our franchise family.
“This business just makes sense to me,” she says. “Entrepreneurship was in our blood. My dad was an independent plumbing contractor and my grandfather ran a multi-state chain of franchises.”
She got started just like most of us, answering an advertisement looking for a customer service representative for a national home service franchise, working part-time on the weekends while she finished her degree at the University of North Carolina. During her five years at the company, she wore a ton of different hats: managing franchise development marketing, lead generation, content development, website management. and coordinating marketing efforts for franchisees. As well as landing a significant partnership with St. Jude Children’s’ Research Hospital.
“They really do things right, you know?” she explains. “Their mission is to set franchises up for success, without any of the smoke and mirrors that some other franchise businesses employ. The process is solid. Rhino 7 is 100 percent on the franchisee’s side.”
Chelsea’s assigned franchise is Diesel Barbershop, a relatively small but fast-growing chain of old-school corner barbershops that have been freshened up with modern twists to form a guy-oriented experience that is part hair salon, part record store, and part video game arcade. Sure, they’re still a retail operation that offers not only great grooming and fair prices, but also a unique space where guys can talk sports, politics, movies, and history or just enjoy a cold one while listening to the White Stripes.
Chelsea admits that it might be counterintuitive for a woman to try to convince entrepreneurs to convince others to open what is essentially a “man cave,” but she says she loves the brand.
“I really do like everything about it,” she says. “It’s a cool place and the model really is unique. It really helps the owners that it’s such a complete package, including site search, site selection, a fully tested business model, even down to interviews with employees. You know, we parents take our kids to get their hair cut at places like Great Clips and women have had the beauty shop experience for decades, but there’s never really been a place like this for guys. There’s a real need for a quality grooming experience for men and when you add an atmosphere with things like high-definition TVs, video games, and customizable music, it’s a full circle that brings customers back again and again. When people see that someone named Chelsea wants to talk to them about a men’s barbershop, sure it seems strange. But when you pull back the layers and crunch the numbers, it really starts to make sense.”
“What I like best is setting people up for success and enabling them to make a change in their lifestyle, be it financial or otherwise,” she says. “When you see pictures of a successful business and see how happy they are running their own place, it’s a really great feeling.”