Arlette Preston: Risk Taker, Entrepreneur, and Businesswomen

Arlette Preston is the owner of the Home Instead Senior Care Fargo office. With a career in nursing, healthcare, and local politics, Preston attributes her success as an entrepreneur and businesswomen to her desire to stretch herself by launching into new ventures. “I have always been willing to take a step out and try something new… and I want to encourage other women to do the same,” explained Preston.

Seeing the Need for Change

Arlette Preston was born and raised in the Portland, North Dakota area. She earned a nursing degree from Minnesota State University Moorhead followed by a master’s degree in community health nursing from Texas Women’s University. Upon completing her education, Preston spent over 20 years with MeritCare Health Systems (now Sanford) in Fargo, North Dakota. “I worked my way through several departments of the hospital beginning in the emergency room and the intensive care unit… Then I finished my time in education and hospital administration,” said Preston.

Throughout her time as a healthcare professional, Preston would observe the lack of options provided to patients as they were discharged from the hospital. “Over the years, I saw that there were gaps when patients left the hospital…. I watched people go home without needed services and end up back in the hospital,” explained Preston. As a result, in 1997, Preston left her role in hospital healthcare and started an adult-based services center. This entrepreneurial venture lasted for a year and a half before Preston made the decision to focus on community healthcare and political consulting work.

Solving the Problem

However, in 2003, the decision was made to purchase a Home Instead Senior Care office that would provide services to the elderly, allowing for them to stay at home or another location. With lessons learned from her previous healthcare-related business, Preston was equipped for success with Home Instead. “I have watched my husband grow a business, 7th Avenue Auto Salvage, and choosing to go with the larger network for support of Home Instead Senior Care has provided stability and continued growth for my business,” explained Preston.

Educating the public is the biggest hurdle for Preston and the Home Instead Senior Care team. “It is difficult for customers to understand that our services are a part of the long-term plan for patients… We can go into a facility, home, or other location. Our goal is to provide services wherever they are located,” said Preston. The services provided do not require a health care professional because Home Instead does all of the necessary on-the-job training for housekeeping, transportation, medication reminders, and other tasks.

One of the benefits that Home Instead offers its clients is the access to the 900-plus offices across the nation. “It is a seamless transition for clients to live in North Dakota for the summer and Arizona for the winter because of our large network of support,” explained Preston. This asset along with continued education has led to word of mouth growth over the last ten years for Home Instead Senior Care.

Learn more from Arlette Preston and Home Instead Senior Care as she speaks at 1 Million Cups Fargo on Wednesday, October 18th, 2017 at 9:15 a.m. at The Stage at Island Park.

Brent McNeal