FirstLight Home Care: Owning a Purpose-Driven Business
Building a great business is a lot like cultivating meaningful friendships: both are fostered through care, honesty, and commitment. For Jaye Firmature-McCoy, integrity is a vital component and, perhaps, the main ingredient. As owner of FirstLight Home Care— Omaha, Firmature-McCoy has put her heart and soul into doing the right thing, believing that today’s buzzwords like “satisfaction” and “loyalty” are more than just a way of conducting business, but a mantra that should be embodied throughout an entire corporation. At a time when non-medical home care is quickly becoming a dime-a-dozen industry, FirstLight sets itself apart with responsiveness, accountability, and a genuine interest in the good of the client.
Firmature-McCoy has spent a lifetime working in small businesses, from growing up in her family’s restaurants to co-owning a commercial laundry company with her husband, Bernard McCoy. When the opportunity came up for them to sell their laundry business, Firmature-McCoy saw the chance to step out on her own and step into a company that would allow her to more actively express her beliefs and values. In the span of 6 weeks in early 2014, Firmature-McCoy and her husband sold one business and bought another. And she only ever looked at buying one: FirstLight Home Care.
It’s what she calls a “purpose driven business.” Owning FirstLight Home Care “allows me to meld my personal values and business values into a successful entity that ignites my passions and commitment to serve others,” says Firmature-McCoy. In its most basic terms, home care is very people oriented and service is the top priority. Firmature-McCoy, who grew up in an era when doctors still made house calls, notes that “what’s considered boutique or concierge today” was the nature of business little more than a generation ago. Taking stake in an organization that prides itself on asking, “How can I help you do better?” is, for Firmature-McCoy, a way of ensuring things are less about her and more about others.
So much in business is about the bottom line, says Firmature-McCoy, who was thrown aback when The Firm asked her to “tell [us] what your perfect business would be.” All she knew was that she wanted something in healthcare, and something that would allow her “to express [her] faith and values, and to make a difference in someone’s life.” Having cared for her own ailing parents, Firmature-McCoy saw a natural fit in FirstLight, and it has allowed her to better relate to clients. “Families go through challenging situations with disease and dying, and it’s hard to wear the caretaker hat as a family member,” says Firmature-McCoy. Home care, she says, allows family members to be wives, husbands, sons, and daughters again.
While Firmature-McCoy set out to own a business that focused on others, she’s unwittingly found personal growth through her work with FirstLight. “It’s not an easy business, and employee and client dynamics are very fluid,” but the office dynamics are an awful lot like family. To foster team work, Firmature-McCoy and her staff are always striving to do the right thing to give clients and their families peace of mind, comfort, and independence. The goal is not to be right, but to get it right. And she’s gotten it right, as FirstLight Home Care – Omaha was recognized by the BBB for Outstanding Integrity in October 2017. For Firmature-McCoy, the award is “about who I am personally and professionally, and how I operate my company. This award validates how we achieve our purpose…and it will always be the beacon that keeps me focused on what really matters.”
Having grown into her role as an entrepreneur over the past five years, Firmature-McCoy isn’t shy about the trepidation she felt going into owning FirstLight. “I was 55 years old when I bought this business with my husband—without knowing anything about business—and it’s been a dream come true.” Since then, she has not regretted her decision to buy a company. “I’ve gained so much personally and professionally, that FirstLight Home Care has been a huge blessing in my life. I’ve grown as a person, both in faith and passion in doing for others.”
Firmature-McCoy’s advice for anyone considering the jump to business ownership: get out and do it. Dreams are meant to be pursued and, with the right fire for the right cause, anyone can own a business and change their path in life. THE FIRM
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