Kids Club House celebrates 30 years in business

Carol Lahti created Kids Club House to be able to do the kinds of work she enjoyed while filling a community need.

| 30 May 2022 | 07:51

Before marrying and motherhood, Carol Lahti taught school for three years followed by 10 years in a corporate position in Manhattan running a $6 million division of a large corporation. After marrying, Lahti and her young family relocated to California and she became a stay-at-home mother of two children. She “loved both careers -- teaching kids and running a business” -- so when the family returned to the East Coast, she decided to start the Kids Club House where she could put her various skills to work.

Her vision was “to create an indoor park so kids could run and climb regardless of the weather.” She developed educational programs where kids learn as they play and programs for parents to connect with each other. Husband, Gary Lahti, built the equipment and years later bought and renovated the building Kids Club House currently operates on County Route 1 in Pine Island.

Over the last 30 years, Lahti created a business strategy that could be applied to many different businesses.

TOP TEN Ways to stay in business for 30 years

10. Make a business plan that is flexible to the needs of your clients.

9. Be prepared to change with the times.

8. Surround yourself with people who can support your good work and delegate. Accept your own shortcomings.

7. Remember that your staff is your most important resource who responds to support vs demands.

6. Know your employees’ job is not only about their income, but allows them time for family and self-care. Also, know they may not have every asset required for the job. That is why it is a team.

5. Do not take the occasional disgruntled client personally but find a solution and a plan to avoid the situation in the future.

4. Understand that strong profits may take time.

3. Decisions must be made considering all aspects of the business, with priority to employees.

2. Make sure you love what you are doing. If you are happy, your employees and clients will want to be a part of your world.

1. Practice what you learned in preschool. Be fair, be kind, and do your best.