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Profit Recipe Case Study: Ocaquatics & Empowered Leadership Teams

How EOS® and The Profit Recipe helped the founder of South Florida’s best swim schools focus on her Vision 

It’s fair to say that Miren Oca’s ability to focus was a victim of her own success. She founded and grew Ocaquatics into the premier swim school in South Florida, with multiple locations and over 160 employees. But while most of her business ran exceptionally well, the pace at which Ocaquatics grew presented new challenges.

Miren needed a better way to invest in and develop her leaders so that they could take on more responsibilities and she could focus on the company’s strategy, culture, and vision. And she turned to The Profit Recipe and the Entrepreneurial Operating System® (EOS®) to help her do it.

From humble beginnings to a swim-school powerhouse

Miren Oca founded Ocaquatics when she was only 23 years old. She started out offering lessons at backyard pools and eventually several club and private school pools, but grew the company into the number one swim school in South Florida. Ocaquatics provides lessons to kids ranging from infants to junior swim team members at five separate locations. The business has more than 160 employees and a powerful culture that’s widely respected in the industry and the community it serves.

In fact, developing Ocaquatics’ culture and team is Miren’s passion and one of her superpowers—something she’d done well from the start. She’d always learned culture- and team-building best practices from industry seminars and other resources, followed by implementing them with her own spin. Miren routinely took things to the next level, providing team members excellent incentives, training, and benefits while staying laser-focused on helping her community.

Ocaquatics has always been a community- and employee-conscious business. And Miren wanted more time to focus on big-picture efforts, such as applying for a B Corp Certification. This milestone demonstrates that a company meets “high standards of verified performance, accountability, and transparency on factors from employee benefits and charitable giving to supply chain practices and input materials.”

But for all its strengths, Ocaquatics faced a common entrepreneurial challenge: empowering leaders to take on more responsibilities as the business expanded.

The challenge: a need to better define structure and invest in leaders

Miren has an excellent leadership team. They believe in Ocaquatics and its mission, and the company has a quality training program. 

Nevertheless, too much decision-making and authority were centered around Miren. She was still running almost every meeting, coming up with most ideas, and generally dictating what needed to happen. Her leaders were great executors, but Miren needed the ability to step back a little and focus on strategy. And her leadership team’s structure and accountabilities weren’t clear enough to do it.

In addition, almost all Ocaquatics’ leaders started as swim school instructors before stepping into management, which creates a classic entrepreneurial dilemma. Not everyone automatically knows how to lead after executing well, and businesses must invest in developing managers to enable their success.

The Ocaquatics leadership team simply wasn’t growing as fast as the company. Miren needed to empower them with a systemic approach, so she turned to The Profit Recipe and EOS.

The solution: structure, autonomy, and a rhythm of accountability

The Profit Recipe first conducted the EOS Proven Process and stress-tested Ocaquatics’ Vision, which was very solid. In fact, many aspects of the company, especially its culture, core values, and operational processes, were working well. But EOS could also improve some areas — specifically, the team’s structure.  

The Profit Recipe helped create a structure and rhythm of accountability that allowed leadership team members to make more decisions and resolve issues without Miren’s input. This effort started with defining the Accountability Chart — understanding precisely who makes what decisions after determining what decisions needed to be made.

In Ocaquatics’ case: 

  • The company didn’t have a dedicated marketing position. While Ocaquatics engaged different vendors doing various aspects of marketing, no one was responsible for overseeing the overall plan except Miren. 
  • There wasn’t a training-management position; several individuals handled different aspects. Ocaquatics needed one person to be fully accountable for training and wholly dedicated to developing all employees.
  • Ocaquatics also needed a facilities manager who was responsible for managing the sophisticated HVAC and pool equipment in every location.
  • Finally, Miren realized she needed an Integrator — a position she’d been doing along with the Visionary role since founding the business.

The results: a renewed leadership team unleashes Miren’s superpowers

New roles and a clear structure allowed leadership team members to take on crucial aspects of the business and be accountable for them. And Miren now could fulfill her Visionary role full time. She has more time for ideation, developing partnerships, and enhancing Ocaquatics’ culture. Miren gained the focus to pursue the coveted B Corp certification and continue to grow the company as an active pillar of the community.

Sometimes, The Profit Recipe helps entrepreneurial companies with significant issues, from weak or nonexistent core values to subpar profitability and growth. But none of that was the case with Ocaquatics. The company was already on the right path, growing fast, and had many components needed for success. 

Nevertheless, EOS helped Miren and her team up their game in many of those areas, plus shored up its key weakness: structure and accountabilities. These improvements leveled leaders up so Miren could devote more of her energy to what she was good at and passionate about. She no longer micromanages tactical and operational decisions, unleashing her superpowers to make a positive difference for her community, clients, and team.

“The most impactful thing of working with The Profit Recipe is that it has been really great to organize our team and to help us just get on the same page,” Miren says. “We all now are rowing in the same direction. It’s really been great for the company, and I’m excited about all the new things that are coming up in the future.”

Empower your Leadership Team and improve efficiency, increase value, and foster collaboration to get better results. A professional Facilitator can ensure that all of your members are on the same page, so you can kick your business up a notch. Connect with The Profit Recipe to Achieve Traction.