Interview with a Franchisor: Eye Level
Please give your name and position in the franchise.
Joseph Lee, Country Manager of Daekyo Malaysia which owns Eye Level, a global brand of self-directed learning for children.
How long have you been working with Eye Level, and what inspired you to join it?
I have been working with Eye Level for 16 years. A friend of mine asked me to support his business; he said that one of his instructors had left. I then taught a lot of students who eagerly wanted to improve their maths and English. After students took their diagnostic test, I first reviewed the test results and told them where to start. Next, I followed the instructions in the teaching guide provided by Eye Level to help them make progress. Amazingly, I saw them significantly improve their math and English! Consequently, I became confident that I would be able to help any student improve his or her maths and English as long as I apply the methodology of Eye Level. I also came to focus on my education business.
What makes Eye Level stand out from the other education franchise opportunities?
An Eye Level franchise is a one-of-a-kind children’s education business where an individual takes up our franchise brand and executes the business based on a set of standardised policies and systems. It operates around a mutually beneficial relationship between the franchisee and us, the franchisor. As a global education franchise brand, its philosophy, teaching methods, programmes and other aspects of running the business are constantly reviewed and ensured that they are delivered in compliance with our standards. In this context, ongoing training and marketing support are provided throughout the franchisee’s business. This is one of the perks of being an Eye Level franchisee – the relentless support from our staff.
Describe a person who would do well as a franchise operator with Eye Level.
A person who has not only a passion for children and teaching but also a strong will to succeed and grow sustainably. The person should also be optimistic and open-minded to be able to manage challenges and changes.
What is the number one piece of advice you would give to a first-time franchisee?
Be willing to invest in initial marketing efforts to gradually grow your student base and at the same time, always maintain constant communication with parents and the staff to build trust and rapport. Be willing to learn the programmes well and attend the continuous franchisee training sessions provided by us to equip yourself with a sufficient knowledge of our programmes. This will help you explain to parents what Eye Level is all about.
What is the outlook for the children's education industry as a whole for the next few years in Malaysia i.e. is it going to grow?
Children’s education has always been a sunrise industry. Parents will always be willing to invest in good education for their children regardless of the economic situation. So yes, this industry will continue to grow and boom. At the end of the day, it’s about how much an education system can benefit the child holistically in the long term.
This is where we, Eye Level, come in, offering quality and well-researched learning materials, coupled with our Self-Directed Learning concept and optimum learning environment, which are the epitome of a solid academic foundation for children.
What are Eye Level's goals/targets for the next 12 months?
We aim to continue to nurture more students with the benefits of Eye Level’s programmes and methodology. We also aim to retain our students so they will stay on in our programmes and reap the benefits in the long term.
In terms of business expansion, we are seeking capable and ambitious individuals who have what it takes to start an Eye Level business. We expect to have more centres by the end of this year.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
Malaysia’s educational policy has gone through some big changes for the past few years. One of such changes is the Kurikulum Standard Sekolah Rendah (KSSR) syllabus. This syllabus came to replace the Kurikulum Bersepadu Sekolah Rendah (KBSR) in the primary school system in 2011. The KSSR focuses more on teaching ‘Higher-Order Thinking Skills’ (HOTS) than ‘Lower-Order Thinking Skills’ (LOTS). While LOTS lead students to memorise concepts, HOTS train them to synthesise and analyse information and knowledge to solve problems and make decisions. Students need to be equipped with HOTS for the later stages of their lives after schooling. It is particularly true in today’s society where analytical, critical and creative minds are in demand more than ever before.
Eye Level is an enrichment programme developed by Daekyo, a leading educational service provider that was founded in 1976 in South Korea. Helping students to become problem solvers, critical thinkers and lifelong learners, Eye Level has come up with robust curriculums based on research, thus serving as a model throughout the world. The Eye Level curriculums help students learn both LOTS and HOTS and apply these skills in and out of school.
In addition, for anyone who wants to own an education franchise business as an entrepreneur, I would like to remind you of the ‘three key factors’ that Prof. Peter Drucker emphasised. If you want to be successful in your business, please choose the right business, right person and right system. In terms of these key factors, Eye Level will be able to give you an opportunity to make your dream come true.