The Leadership Spotlight Shines On: Jane Freund

1. Where were you born and raised; current city; family hobbies; past business highlights.
After growing up in a small town in New Hampshire, I had dreams of seeing the world. After college, I took a one-year job in Germany that would eventually turn into four years. I grew a lot in that time and saw what felt like every inch of Europe. After returning to the US, I missed that sense of adventure. I lost a part of myself that I grew to love when I returned back home. I couldn't catch a train and be in a new country or culture within an hour. Travel has always been an important part of life and when I felt depleted from my teaching career a few years later, I had the urge to seek a new career path in the travel industry. Initially, this was my exit strategy and I hoped to earn just enough to stay home with my future kids and not worry about the bills. Little did I know, I'd be able to replace my teaching salary and never look back. This business has opened our doors and minds to all the freedoms in the world. My goal is to now retire my husband before 40, something I never thought would be possible five years ago. 

2.​ How have you grown or personally developed since joining PlanNet?
This business has developed my leadership skills beyond my wildest dreams. I used to be so sensitive and always cared what people thought about me. Since growing my business, I no longer spend time or energy on things that don't serve me. My circle got smaller, but tighter. I stopped listening to other peoples' excuses and let go of my own. If you're not interested in bettering your life and situation? That's okay. I spend my time and energy on the people who are also leveling up in their lives. My family jokes and calls it, "The Jane Train." You're either on it, or you're not, and we're going with or without you.

3​. What drives you​;​ what motivates you?
I'm not motivated by financial freedom alone. Money returns; time doesn't. For me, it's the time freedom earned from this opportunity. I looked at my last commission check and added up it was about three weeks of teaching. 150 hours of work as a 5th grade teacher was sitting in my inbox from residual income I earned through this business. Honestly, I took a deep breath and cried. I was able to trade in those 150 hours of teaching for 150 hours with my now three-year-old. How many life lessons did I teach him in those hours? How many 'boo-boos' did I get to kiss? How many meals did my family get to have together? I started this business for my own benefit, but now, helping other people trade in those hours to be with their families as well is my ultimate motivator.  

4. Who would you consider a role model and why?
To this day, March 12, 2020 was the hardest day of my life. School had been shut down for the foreseeable future, I was eight months pregnant and hearing that husbands may not be allowed in the delivery room due to Covid-19, and my dad called to tell me he had terminal cancer. My world came crashing down in a matter of 12 hours. Doctors said he had three weeks to three months to live. As we navigated life in lockdown, the final weeks of pregnancy and wondering if my dad would be here to meet my baby, that gave me inner strength I never knew existed. My dad remained mentally strong through those last few weeks and I saw the value of life right in front of me. Before he passed, he told me to be grateful that my legs could climb mountains because the view at the top is always worth the effort. He said to remember to relish in the simple joys of life, like the sour taste of a blueberry. He was my travel companion and the one who encouraged me to seek adventure and try new things. He loved hearing about this business and I was with him in Ireland when I hit One-Star Director. We celebrated over a pint of Guinness. It pains me that he's no longer here to celebrate my accomplishments along with me, but he did get to spend a beautiful five weeks with my baby and that I will always be grateful for.

5. The three words that describe me best are:
Loyal, dependable, and compassionate. 

6.  If you had some sound advice to give to anyone, what would it be?
If you wait until you're ready, you will be waiting for the rest of your life. Stop waiting and start today. - Brad Turnbull

7. What does your life look like five years from now?
My dream has always been to take a World Cruise and my husband agreed to do it when our son graduates high school. Well, he's only three and life doesn't always go according to plan. I replied, "How about before Kindergarten?" and he agreed. I booked it before he could change his mind. We've booked a 4-month World Cruise for 2025 and we will explore several areas to see where we may want a vacation home. So five years from now, I will have a home in Europe or Asia to enjoy. I'm not sure where yet, but somewhere with a beautiful view and a cozy atmosphere to share with friends.