Even in a traditionally male-dominated field, Christian Brothers Automotive is proud to have many powerful female entrepreneurs breaking barriers in the automotive industry. As we continue to celebrate Women’s History Month, we’re proud to highlight our female franchisees paving way for women in the industry.
Jonita White originally moved to Texas, eager to work for herself. But the Great Recession made launching a business in a troubled market nearly impossible. That’s how she found her way into franchising, a way to fulfill her entrepreneurial dreams, but with a proven playbook.
White had no prior experience in the automotive industry. As a loyal Christian Brothers Automotive customer, she was attracted to our customer service, long history and values. Now a successful operator, Jonita has carved a name for herself since opening her first location in Frisco, Texas, in 2011.
“When women come into the shop and see me, their faces just automatically relax, and they feel comfortable. Women, don’t be afraid of a male-dominated industry. Cross that line. I’m living proof it can be done,” White said.
Franchisee Tammie Green worked in corporate America for 25 years before opening her Christian Brothers location in Shawnee, Kansas. For women looking to own their own business, Tammie suggests surrounding yourself with fellow women business leaders who can be a source of support and encouragement.
“I would say number one, chase after your dream. Number two, find out what you’re passionate about. And then number three, surround yourself with people that have the skills that you don’t have,” Green said.
Christie Miller opened her Christian Brothers shop in Houston with her husband Andy. Before becoming a female entrepreneur, Christie was a nurse for over 20 years. While running a business was not in her original plan, she credits her own success to creating relationships with other entrepreneurs that you can rely on and seek advice from.
“You rely on those people a lot to know as to whether it’s how to do an accounting question, or what to do with an upset customer. Even in nursing, being trained and helped by other nurses was vital to our success,” Miller said.
For our female entrepreneurs, their diverse backgrounds and range of skill prove you don’t need automotive repair experience to own and operate a successful Christian Brothers Automotive franchise. In fact, only about 10% of all owners have auto industry experience.
“This industry is not about cars. It’s about relationships. If a customer is frustrated because of a situation with their car, it’s because of everything else they’re dealing with in life: I’ve got to get my daughter to dance lessons. I’ve got to get my son to football. What does it take to get my car fixed and back on the road,” White added.
Learn more about franchise opportunities with Christian Brothers Automotive.