i9 Sports Franchise Thrives in Honolulu | i9 Sports Owner Stories
Find out the secret behind franchise owner Roger Dequina’s success
Roger Dequina’s i9 Sports franchise is one of the most successful in the entire i9 Sports organization, growing from serving 160 kids on opening day in 2007 to having 10,000 children on the rosters today. What’s the secret to his success in the Honolulu, Hawaii, area? It can be summed up with the old adage, “to thy own self be true.”
In the summer of 2006, Roger found himself at a crossroads: continue with his leadership position as a professional educator or pursue something else. Leaving that career path to open a youth sports league franchise with i9 Sports was his first step toward being true to himself.
Roger credits this anchoring to his success. In growing his business, he notes the importance of making decisions based upon his core motivations: “Stay true to the reason of why you do what you do,” Roger says. “My faith in God, my values and my belief system are foundational.”
It’s also important to surround yourself with people of great character and integrity, especially when building a team, Roger notes. In the early days of his i9 Sports franchise, Roger worked about 50 hours a week to get the business up and running. Now, however, he rarely works more than 10 hours a week, thanks to the four full-time and 25 to 30 seasonal part-time employees he has in place. Roger advises: “Put a good team of people around you. Your business is only going to be as successful as its components or individual pieces. Skills can be trained and taught, but you can’t teach character.”
i9 Sports supports franchise owners with training and technology
To hire the best candidates, franchise owners are encouraged to use a personality assessment tool to assess applicants This assessment is a good predictor of future behavior. “This has been really helpful in the hiring process, as it is a way to find out what someone will do as opposed to what they have done,” Roger says.
Support comes in other forms, as well. Roger cites business coaches and conventions as helpful opportunities for learning. He says i9 Sports’ proprietary software, Franchise Manager, is the best, “bar none,” and he has previously served on the company’s Franchise Advisory Council, which allows the franchisor to hear the concerns of the franchisees.
For entrepreneurs who may be looking at beginning their own i9 Sports franchise, Roger offers a warning: don’t fall for the lures of copycat competitors — youth sports leagues that may look similar to i9 Sports but don’t offer the same type of experience. “We are different in that we really pay attention to hearing the customer’s voice, we have incredible technology support, and I don’t think there’s anyone out there who puts out a program better than ours,” Roger says.
i9 Sports is ideal for sports-minded entrepreneurs who seek a rewarding career
“If you want to own your own business, you enjoy sports and want to give back to your community in a positive way, then you should consider joining i9 Sports,” Roger says. Among the many benefits of owning his own youth sports league franchise, Roger says that knowing he’s making a difference in families’ lives is at the top of the list. “There’s a certain joy you get when you watch the kids make their first goal or basket,” Roger says. “We’re building up kids so that they become confident and capable adults. That’s very rewarding.”
Roger has just renewed his contract with i9 Sports for another 10 years. He’s also partnered with fellow franchisee Brian Watkins; the two together own an i9 Sports franchise in the Chicago area. He says that his i9 Sports franchise has meant freedom for him in every possible way — spiritually, financially and professionally — and he treasures the flexibility to spend time with his family and the work/life balance that is so rare in traditional jobs.
What does the next decade hold for Roger Dequina and his i9 Sports franchise? “I’m excited about what’s ahead. It’s a bright future with an awesome company.”
i9 Sports is the country’s premier youth sports franchise
i9 Sports is the nation’s first and largest youth sports league franchise that offers flag football, soccer, baseball and basketball to children between the ages of 3 and 14. i9 Sports provides a youth sports experience unlike any other by teaching the importance of good sportsmanship on the field and in life. With convenient, flexible hours that translate into an enviable work/life balance, and no real estate or large upfront inventory requirements, i9 Sports is a compelling low-investment franchise opportunity with an attractive profit potential. Our long-term vision is to become the undisputed leader in recreational youth activities worldwide by delivering a superior and extraordinary customer experience.
Learn more about the i9 Sports franchise opportunity
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