When Yousuf Ali sought out a business opportunity, the marketing professional knew what he didn’t want. He wasn’t interested in a food franchise, and he wasn’t too keen on staying in the marketing field. He was drawn to becoming his own boss in the retail sector. By Rochelle Miller
When Yousuf Ali sought out a business opportunity, the marketing professional knew what he didn’t want. He wasn’t interested in a food franchise, and he wasn’t too keen on staying in the marketing field. He was drawn to becoming his own boss in the retail sector.
“I wanted to make sure it was durable and has longevity,” he said. Despite having no experience in the optical services industry, this journey led him to franchise ownership with My Eyelab, a leading provider of optical products and services.
For Ali, leaving the marketing sector when he did would prove to be a sage move. His My Eyelab location in Irving, Texas, opened in October 2019 – just months before the coronavirus crisis unfolded in America and presented unprecedented challenges to all business sectors. As it turns out, not only did Ali choose a business that would be deemed an essential service, but he also selected a franchise that has an additional edge. While many optical retailers rely on in-person exams, My Eyelab has been using telehealth technologies for customer eye exams long before “social distancing” was a term introduced to the nation’s vocabulary.
“Since we use telehealth, we are able to maintain a distance of six feet at all times,” Ali said.
“There’s no reason for us to get closer to the patient.”
Another significant advantage that drew Ali to My Eyelab is the brand’s selection. “In our area, we have the highest amount of frame selection – 1400 frames. That gives a lot of options to our patients,” explained Ali.
As a franchise owner, Ali enjoys the flexibility to take time off while having peace of mind–benefits which often elude independent business owners or traditional career employees. When Ali takes a well-earned vacation, it’s without interruption, since processes are in place for his employees to receive direct support from My Eyelab. “Franchise support can answer their questions and resolve their issues. I don’t have to be on the phone, and I can continue my time off,” he explained.
Whether it’s navigating through business operations during these unusual circumstances or planning two future stores he has in development with My Eyelab, Ali feels reassured that he is not alone. He enjoys running his business and thriving as a management leader who can provide an essential service to his community. “I believe in the management style of not just pushing from the back, but pulling people with you,” he said. “I lead from the front.”
Ali is very impressed with the marketing support offered by My Eyelab to promote each franchise location, which is high praise coming from a marketing veteran. Ironically, he doesn’t seem to miss being hands-on with the marketing aspect of his business. “Working with My Eyelab meant I didn’t have to worry about the marketing aspect of the business. They take care of it 100%, and they do a great job,” he said.
For additional information regarding franchising opportunities with My Eyelab, visit myeyelabfranchise.com or call 561-423-1601.
– Rochelle Miller