How This 10-Year-Old Entrepreneur Ended Up a Smoothie King FranchiseeAuthor: Smoothie King
Corey Masters started his first business at 10 years old.
It was a simple door-to-door operation: he’d approach a house with an overgrown lawn, knock on the door and ask the homeowners if they’d allow him to mow their yard for $10.
It’s no wonder why Corey ended up becoming a Smoothie King franchise owner.
Between his determined work ethic, managerial experience and eagerness to help his team succeed, Corey has all the qualities of a successful Smoothie King franchisee.
From Finance to Franchise
Corey’s work ethic and teamwork ended up landing him a spot on Texas Christian University’s football team as a cornerback. After graduating from college and grad school, Corey began his career at a large financial firm based in Boston. He primarily worked out of the company’s Texas office, building his management experience for 14 years.
“Being in corporate America and being part of a business for that long helped me learn so many things needed to run a business successfully, particularly the people management side of it,” Corey said. “I try to carry over a lot of those practices to the store.”
Despite a great experience with the firm, the 10-year-old entrepreneur side of Corey still wanted to run his own business.
“It’s something I always felt I wanted to do and was going to one day get back into, I just wanted to have the right timing and opportunity to do it,” Corey said.
His interest in practicing an active, healthy lifestyle eventually led him to Smoothie King.
Hiring for Success
Corey now owns a Smoothie King location in Grand Prairie, Texas, where he is hands-on and assembling the best team possible. He is also an absentee owner for a Smoothie King in Memphis, Tenn.
Corey’s hiring process isn’t built on hiring for specific needs, but rather hiring well-rounded, versatile employees that can play a number of roles in his business. Most of his team is made up of high school and college students, which affects his hiring process.
“I can’t scrutinize them as much as professionals who have true work experience and college degrees,” Corey said. “But there are certain aspects that I’m looking for when I interview a person that I hope would translate directly to success in a role at Smoothie King.
Some of those aspects Corey looks for are whether or not the young interviewee has any prior work experience, if they stay active and if they’ve been a part of a team. He also consider their personality. While he admits there’s no perfect candidate, Corey aims to maintain a strong, adaptable staff that can cover any and all positions in the store in a pinch.
“I never know what may happen on any given shift,” Corey said. “I may have somebody call in sick and I may need to have somebody who doesn’t do drive-thru to do drive-thru for me. I need everyone to be competent enough to have the skill set to perform in any area of the store.”
On the side, Corey also teaches college business management classes. He views the development of an employee similar to the development of one of his students. Drawing from his managerial and professorial background, Corey sees an employee’s weakness as an opportunity to grow.
“Whatever aspect of the job an employee is weakest at – no problem,” Corey said. “We’ll support them in that area to help them get better at it as time goes on.”
Promoting Health in the Community
Corey lives the Smoothie King mission, “to inspire people to live healthy and active lifestyles.” Smoothie King is dedicated to providing guests with a more nutritious, convenient meal alternative, and Corey has taken extra strides to extend that opportunity beyond the walls of his store.
With the Smoothie King mission in mind, Corey uses his smoothie bar to promote health and wellness around Grand Prairie. Aside from keeping an active lifestyle himself through participation in indoor soccer leagues and flag football, Corey partners with Camp Gladiator, a dynamic outdoor fitness program, Epic Waters, an 80,000-square-foot indoor waterpark and his alma mater TCU as a sponsor. He also sponsors his daughter’s competitive dances.