CareAcademy, CEO & Co-Founder Helen Adeosun, educates caregivers to provide excellent care. Steve Shapiro, the lead Venture Partner for CareAcademy said, “I was drawn to CareAcademy first because I see it as solving a huge problem, as the largest single job in America is a home health assistant and supplying and training this huge pool of candidates is critical for the stability of millions of families across the country. I was very enamored with the two entrepreneurs, Helen and Madhuri, and believe they have the conviction and perseverance to be successful.” Steve plans to use his experience negotiating contracts with large strategic partners to help CareAcademy scale quickly.
List your traction
- 7,500 caregivers
- 34 Agencies
The following is the transcript from a conversation with Helen Adeosun, Co-Founder & CEO of CareAcademy.
Why did you found your company? I’ve been a caregiver, in some capacity, since high school. I’m almost a microcosm of caregivers in that, it’s mostly women of color and increasingly immigrants. I’m the child of immigrants and of women who also did some level of caregiving. So in my own professional life, one of the things that was always surprising to me is I always received some level of preparation that introduced me to the work I was doing. Because of that I assumed that what I was doing was important. Then I thought more about it under the caregiving lens and I had so many stories of walking into someone’s home and having no background on them or preparation. No one even asked why I was qualified to work with this person.
“When you’re looking for an accountant you know what the metrics of a good accountant are. I think it should be like that for caregiving.”
Most memorable moment on your entrepreneurship journey? There are a lot of memorable moments and a lot of key people and I thank god for every single one of them. But the one that stuck out the most was when we were in Iowa. We’d gone because there are a lot of intersections to what is happening at large in the US, in terms of aging and displacement of aging. And we were sitting in the middle of the program contemplating what kind of company should we be. Could we serve so many people? And I think, in the world of entrepreneurship, everyone has this mindset that you serve as many things and people as you can and it was a program mentor who said ‘what can you absolutely be good at?’ If you could be the absolute best at elder care, home care training program for private caregivers, then you should just focus on that. If you want to be good in business you need to learn to say no. And it’s hard but it’s true. I attribute the fact that we’ve been able to grow to the fact that we’ve been able to focus. The more we do that the more we’ll win and be successful.
Biggest challenge to date? I think the biggest challenge is we don’t know what we don’t know. What keeps me at night is the gulf that I feel like I have a really big vision for what we can do and what we can become and how we can grow into that. I emailed out entire production staff for our videos and I said, ‘what was good enough to get us to this point, won’t be good enough to get us where we want to go this year.’ It’s been pulling everyone, including myself, out of our comfort zone in order to achieve our goals. That is really exciting but really terrifying.
Why LearnLaunch? We’ve gone through a lot of programs and when Madhuri and I sat down and assessed, we said, where do we see ourselves doing the most growing. A lot of programs are focused on iterative nature and then you exit out. At this point we know we want to build a company that lasts and has an impact and I think LearnLaunch encompasses all aspects of our company. One of the most amazing conversations was with Jean. She said, “When all the go, go, go is done, I want you to have a place to land.” And that’s when I knew that we made a right decision, that LearnLaunch is invested not in just the 3-6 months but in the overall growth of our company.
Look forward to a year from now, what are some of your biggest successes in ‘17? We think about success in terms of metrics. We’ve become much more metric driven. If we’re doing our job right then we’re servicing more caregivers, more caregivers are tell other caregivers how great we are and we’d be able to service anywhere from 50,000 to 100,000 by the end of the year. We’re servicing in the order of 500 agencies which is basically a 10 fold of where we are here in January by the end of the year. And that will be born out in how successful we are revenue-wise we are as a company and so we want to see a million and a half which is almost a 10 x again of our current revenue.
*Want to get in touch with Helen? Send her an email: firstname.lastname@example.org