From the May 2002 issue of Entrepreneur

"I always wanted my own business--something that wasn't in the area I had spent 17 years of my career in," says Richard Premec, a 40-year-old Sanford Rose Associates franchisee. Prior to joining the franchise, Premec worked in global logistics and spent most of his time traveling.

Because he didn't want to leap from one corporate job to another, Premec called on a neighbor who happened to be a franchise broker. After tests and discussions, they decided executive recruiting firm Sanford Rose Associates matched Premec's interests.

Premec chose to specialize in the medical industry and opened his franchise in Florence, Kentucky, in April 2001. Immediately, he faced the challenge of bringing in revenue. "It probably was six months before it felt like a business," he says. "I didn't take a paycheck for eight months."

To keep himself motivated during the lean times, Premec compiled a list of the top 10 reasons why he didn't want to rejoin the corporate world--including things like not wanting to deal with office politics and fear of being laid off. "I would look at that to remind myself exactly why I left [corporate life]," he says.

After a year, Premec is hoping to reach sales of a half-million dollars in 2002 and would like to grow 20 percent a year for the next five years. He's optimistic about the future of his franchise. "It's business-to-business, and it's working with people," he says, "and if you're good at that, you'll be successful."