How Scottsdale’s Kathy Puryear retired from teaching to enjoy a Pedego adventure
When you’ve done the same thing for 30 years, it’s time for a change. Kathy Puryear, 58, had worked as an elementary school teacher in the same school district for nearly three decades before she began to think seriously about finding a new life outside of the education field. When she retired in mid-2014, it was time to make her move. Her quandary was in deciding which direction to go. “I loved being a teacher and never gave any thought to being in charge of a small business,” she said.
The freedom and responsibility of business ownership seemed a far cry from her lifelong career. Then she and her husband Bill learned about Pedego, and they discovered options they’d never considered before — the appealing opportunity to be independent. According to Gallup, this is not uncommon. More than a third of all American Baby Boomers start a small business for the opportunity to be independent. And nearly another third do it to pursue a passion.
When Kathy and Bill fell in love with some rented Pedego electric bikes on vacation, they saw the potential of gaining independence for something they could be passionate about: opening a Pedego store of their own. “We had so much fun riding the bikes, and we knew that they would be a perfect fit in our community,” she said. “Plus, owning a Pedego shop would give us the opportunity to be in charge of our own destiny. I could picture this new lifestyle instantly,” she explained. They realized that with an outlay of time, effort and a hefty sprinkling of fun — the same investment a teacher makes in students — they could succeed with Pedego Scottsdale.
The good news about making this move after retiring from a long-term career was the preparation they had for their new business. Kathy’s transferable skills from years of managing a classroom helped her determine that she, Bill and Pedego were a great fit. “I think my background of making children and their parents feel comfortable, one-on-one, helps me to make our customers feel at ease with rentals and purchases,” she said. It was no surprise her people skills would help with the business, though she is pleased by other abilities that have surfaced. “I’m experienced at answering questions, and that coupled with my strong critical thinking skills allows me to successfully handle decisions necessary for daily operations.”
Indeed, owning a Pedego dealership has changed a lot of things in the Puryears’ lives. But being members of the Boomer generation was a big plus. As mature adults, they were ready to assume complete responsibility for a retail business, which requires nearly 24/7 care —and they have never minded it at all. “I am so proud that we entered into a partnership with Pedego, and we both learned quickly that despite having no background in retail, bikes or business ownership, we’re succeeding and having tremendous fun,” said Kathy. “I look forward to coming to work every day! Hello, fun!”