Zoom Zoom Groom and my Connection with Saskatchewan's Small Businesses

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Despite frequent requests throughout my term, I’ve been reluctant to profile this particular entrepreneur. Connie Buchanan is the owner and operator of Zoom Zoom Groom, PreZoomably Cats and The Apex Academy of Grooming Arts - three pet-focused ventures located in Regina. As you may have deducted by Connie’s last name, she is also my mom - making the Zoom Zoom Groom enterprise my family’s business. After a year of exploring the ins and outs of Saskatchewan’s small business sector, I’ve acquired a much stronger appreciation for the work ethic and bravery required to make dreams a reality. Nepotism aside, I believe that my mom’s story is something that many of Saskatchewan’s movers and shakers can resonate with. With this full circle mentality, my own family business turned out to be the perfect finale to my trade and export journey as the wanderer.

 

 

Prior to the establishment of Zoom Zoom Groom, I grew up with a teacher as a mom. Not only that, but I grew up with a mom who was MY teacher. I’m a former student of “Mrs. Buchanan’s” grade 5 class at White City Elementary school. Granted the inevitable embarrassment and tension that came with this dynamic, I’m thankful to have been able to see my mom in her element. She has been regarded by many students as a life-changing figure in their lives and this devotion didn’t go unnoticed. In 2004, my mom was awarded The Prime Minister’s Award of Teaching Excellence - a huge honour, which was presented to her by Prime Minister Jean Cretien himself. Even with this recognition, my mom still wasn’t fully at home in her career.

 

As long as I can remember, my mom has been drawn to animals. In fact, her initial plan upon graduating high school was to become a vet. Her family, however, didn’t see this as an appropriate industry for a female and, in an effort to maintain their support, she took a more practical route. My mom loved the 20+ years she spent teaching but knew she was destined for something else. She found refuge in her recreational pass-times of showing and grooming her standard poodles, until one day something clicked. When I was 14 years old my mom told my brothers and myself that she was taking a year’s leave from education and buying a trailer that she would pull to people’s driveways to groom their pets. Naturally, we were concerned about what appeared to be a drastic mid-life crisis. But 15 years later, it's clear that we couldn’t have been more wrong.

 

My mom’s business not only flourished, but opened the doors to additional entrepreneurial ventures. She soon after opened a stationary salon that accommodates both dogs and cats. On top of that, she has integrated her talent for shaping minds by opening a government accredited grooming academy. After many years of grueling hours and dedication, my parents are starting to reap the rewards of business ownership. They now live a semi-retired career where they have endowed management responsibilities on long-term employees and involve themselves as much as they see fit. They have the freedom to travel or work on separate endeavors (mom is currently writing a novel). As a son who admittedly once called his mother crazy, there is nothing more inspiring than seeing this.

 

Although my mom began with little business savvy or entrepreneurial knowledge, she has an infectious attitude and a willingness to learn that made the achievement of her goals a given. So much of this success rate has to do with community - an area in which she excels. She established close ties with Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan as well as Clarence Campeau Development Fund and The Gabriel Dumont Institute. She is forever grateful for the support she has received from these organizations. Operations like these are exactly why my mom thinks that Zoom Zoom Groom and her other ventures wouldn’t have the legs they have in Saskatchewan anywhere else.

 

Despite frequent requests throughout my term, I’ve been reluctant to profile this particular entrepreneur. Connie Buchanan is the owner and operator of Zoom Zoom Groom, PreZoomably Cats and The Apex Academy of Grooming Arts - three pet-focused ventures located in Regina. As you may have deducted by Connie’s last name, she is also my mom - making the Zoom Zoom Groom enterprise my family’s business. After a year of exploring the ins and outs of Saskatchewan’s small business sector, I’ve acquired a much stronger appreciation for the work ethic and bravery required to make dreams a reality. Nepotism aside, I believe that my mom’s story is something that many of Saskatchewan’s movers and shakers can resonate with. With this full circle mentality, my own family business turned out to be the perfect finale to my trade and export journey as the wanderer.

 

Prior to the establishment of Zoom Zoom Groom, I grew up with a teacher as a mom. Not only that, but I grew up with a mom who was MY teacher. I’m a former student of “Mrs. Buchanan’s” grade 5 class at White City Elementary school. Granted the inevitable embarrassment and tension that came with this dynamic, I’m thankful to have been able to see my mom in her element. She has been regarded by many students as a life-changing figure in their lives and this devotion didn’t go unnoticed. In 2004, my mom was awarded The Prime Minister’s Award of Teaching Excellence - a huge honour, which was presented to her by Prime Minister Jean Cretien himself. Even with this recognition, my mom still wasn’t fully at home in her career.

 

 

As long as I can remember, my mom has been drawn to animals. In fact, her initial plan upon graduating high school was to become a vet. Her family, however, didn’t see this as an appropriate industry for a female and, in an effort to maintain their support, she took a more practical route. My mom loved the 20+ years she spent teaching but knew she was destined for something else. She found refuge in her recreational pass-times of showing and grooming her standard poodles, until one day something clicked. When I was 14 years old my mom told my brothers and myself that she was taking a year’s leave from education and buying a trailer that she would pull to people’s driveways to groom their pets. Naturally, we were concerned about what appeared to be a drastic mid-life crisis. But 15 years later, it's clear that we couldn’t have been more wrong.

 

 

My mom’s business not only flourished, but opened the doors to additional entrepreneurial ventures. She soon after opened a stationary salon that accommodates both dogs and cats. On top of that, she has integrated her talent for shaping minds by opening a government accredited grooming academy. After many years of grueling hours and dedication, my parents are starting to reap the rewards of business ownership. They now live a semi-retired career where they have endowed management responsibilities on long-term employees and involve themselves as much as they see fit. They have the freedom to travel or work on separate endeavors (mom is currently writing a novel). As a son who admittedly once called his mother crazy, there is nothing more inspiring than seeing this.

 

 

Although my mom began with little business savvy or entrepreneurial knowledge, she has an infectious attitude and a willingness to learn that made the achievement of her goals a given. So much of this success rate has to do with community - an area in which she excels. She established close ties with Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan as well as Clarence Campeau Development Fund and The Gabriel Dumont Institute. She is forever grateful for the support she has received from these organizations. Operations like these are exactly why my mom thinks that Zoom Zoom Groom and her other ventures wouldn’t have the legs they have in Saskatchewan anywhere else.

 

 

 

In retrospect, I suppose I have always had a first-hand view of business ownership within Saskatchewan. Even so, I’m thankful for my term as the Wanderer for giving me a visceral perspective through which I can fully appreciate the contributions that local entrepreneurs make to our province as a whole.

 

 

 

To learn more about Zoom Zoom Groom go to: www.zoomzoomgroom.com