Top 10 American Franchises

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Women in Franchising: 3 Tips for Turning a Passion into a Successful Career


There is an old saying that if you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life. Fueling your passions can be a great way to finding a potential career and identify new industries. 


There is an old saying that if you do what you love, you will never work a day in your life. Fueling your passions can be a great way to finding a potential career and identify new industries. 


Dominique Laroche started playing hockey at the age of eight and continued to play in youth hockey leagues throughout her childhood. She then went on to play on the National Women’s Hockey League for the Ottawa Raiders and the Quebec Avalanche. During this time, she was also working part-time for her father at Play It Again Sports®, a resale franchise that sells quality used sports and fitness equipment.


After five years of playing professional hockey, Laroche retired after receiving a career-ending knee injury and began working at her family’s Play It Again Sports location full-time. After her father retired in 2013, Laroche embarked on her next journey – entrepreneurship, becoming the new owner and manager of Play It Again Sports.  


Providing local athletes access to quality used and affordable sporting equipment, she is a hero in her community. As a former athlete herself, she recognizes that accessible and inexpensive gear determines if a child is able to pursue their passion or not. Using her passion of sports to pave her career path, Dominique has some tips for entrepreneurs who want to turn their passions into a lifetime career. 


Reflect and Explore your Passions


Sports had always played a huge part in Laroche’s life. She loved how participating in sports made her feel, and wanted to provide that same feeling for kids in her community. When it was time to exit the professional hockey world, she followed her heart and knew that her passion for sports would be fulfilled in a new way, working with her father at Play It Again Sports. 


Whether you are just starting your career or looking for a change, it can help to look at activities and hobbies that bring you joy and excitement. Identifying these interests can help you explore new industries and jobs that you may not have considered before. If you enjoy reading, consider opening a used book store, becoming a writer or librarian. When you start to think like this, the options are endless and can create a huge list of careers you can then start to research.


Utilize your Expertise and Knowledge


Paving a career path around your passions can utilize your experience and knowledge of the industry. It’s important to know a lot about the industry you are trying to enter. Instead of starting from scratch, try building off of that list of hobbies or interests you have created and start to note the industries you know a lot about. When you have prior knowledge, it can help make the transition more effortless and can set you up for success.


Owning and managing a sporting goods store that buys and sells quality used sporting equipment means that Laroche uses her experience and knowledge daily. Whether it’s helping a child find the best hockey stick for their skill level or pricing equipment lower than industry standards, Laroche is utilizing her vast experience from years of playing sports. Though not a requirement for success, all of Laroche’s employees are athletes. She has seen how important that experience can be when giving guidance and selling products to customers. 


Apply Past Skills to New Opportunities


What’s great about learning new skills is that they can be utilized in many different ways. Playing hockey throughout her childhood helped Laroche develop a strong work ethic, leadership skills, and the ability to work as a teammate. When transitioning to her new career at Play It Again Sports, she applied all of these skills to this new role. Laroche liked being a leader and captain on her hockey team, which motivated her to use these valuable skills when it came to taking over her father’s store and becoming a successful business owner.


Identify your hard and soft skills, and look at where else they can be applied in both your professional and personal life. Having a hobby of painting or crafting can teach patience, detail-orientation, and creativeness. All of these skills can be transferred into your career and can help you recognize what jobs may be a good fit for your personality. The key to any success is being able to recognize your strengths and opportunities and build off them.


At the end of the day, everyone wants to have a job that they love. So, it’s important to take the time to research and find what opportunities would be the best fit for you. Everyone is different, and you need to find a career that will utilize your skills to make sure you are set up for success. Finding a career based on your passions is a great way to do this. 


Play it Again Sports® is just one of many franchising opportunities that Winmark – the Resale Company®  offers, their other brands include Once Upon A Child®, Plato’s Closet®, Music Go Round®, and Style Encore®. If you are interested in learning more about franchise opportunities with Winmark you can visit