By Nancy Stabback
After taking care of my own multiple small businesses for years, I turned to Padgett Business Services, a bookkeeping and small business accounting services franchise, to explore turning my knack for numbers into a full-time career. Today, I’m a franchisee with operations in Orillia and Barrie, Ont., dividing my time between the two locations.
A love of learning
I grew up in Beaverton, Ont., a small town that is located 30 minutes outside Orillia. There weren’t many activities to partake in, so I read a lot. I loved learning and spent most of my time devouring all the books in the local library. Going to the library was a Saturday morning excursion for me. I would head town and check out as many books as they would let me. I’d read them and take them back the next week and find a half a dozen more.
My mother had a set of books called The Bookshelf for Boys and Girls and they really struck a chord with me. These were books about faraway places, crafts, science experiments, fables and religion. They were like the Internet for me and I gained a ‘global’ education through books. Whenever I had nothing else to read or it was rainy, I’d dive into the places these books portrayed. Being from a small town, with no exposure to anything but the country, these books were probably the most profound influence in fostering my desire to travel.
When it came to school, mathematics were always my strength. It doesn’t surprise me I turned to a career in accounting services, because I was always good at math and excelled in it at school.
Fortunately, my interests in accounting and travel did eventually converge because of Padgett.
I have had the pleasure of visiting many different places through the conferences, meetings, conventions and educational opportunities provided. From Calgary to Charleston, S.C., San Antonio, Texas, and Hawaii, it’s been a great journey and I’m thankful for our franchisor’s presence across North America.
Finding my way to Padgett took time. After I began post-secondary education studying business administration at Ryerson Polytechnical Institute (now called Ryerson University) in Toronto, I missed small-town life and returned to Beaverton.
My husband at the time and I bought a tiny restaurant, which I operated for three years. It was a small breakfast place and it did well.
Eventually, we sold the restaurant and I ended up taking a five-year contract with the Ontario government to operate a snack bar and store in Sibbald Point Provincial Park, located near Sutton, Ont. It was a busy location and I managed a staff of up to 15 people in the peak summer season. It was a great avenue into small business management, as I was responsible for all of the day-to-day operations and bookkeeping.
That five-year contract turned into 12 years. When it was time for me to move on, I accepted a seasonal job at an accounting firm in Lindsay, Ont., preparing tax returns for individuals and small business owners during tax season and doing some accounting work. I really took to this work environment.
When my seasonal contract was coming to an end in 1998, my husband at the time noticed an advertisement for Padgett in the newspaper. He had pointed it out to me before in passing, but this time I called the franchisor and it seemed like a really good fit for me. I leapt at the opportunity!