Member Spotlight | Carmen Smith

Meet Carmen Smith! She is the owner of Three Sisters Driving School in Fernie, BC. 

Carmen joined 2nd Edition Coworking to have a workspace downtown and avoid communicating between home and driving lessons. As a hotdesk member, she enjoys working at a desk without the distractions of being at home, resulting in increased efficiency and better time management.

Q. What do you work on at 2nd Edition Coworking? 

A. When I’m at the coworking space, I handle various tasks such as checking my schedule, completing registrations, preparing lesson plans, reviewing students’ progress, researching ideas for program development, and managing online banking and bookkeeping tasks.

Q. What do you love most about working at 2nd Edition Coworking?

A. The aspect I appreciate the most about working at 2nd Edition Coworking is the heightened
productivity and focus I experience when working from the Hot Desk. Unlike at home, where chores like dishes and laundry can distract me, the coworking space allows me to separate my home and work tasks effectively.

Q. How long have you been doing this work?

A. As a new business owner, I have been operating since January 2023. Since then, I have already taken more than 50 students out for driving lessons, hoping to make a positive impact on each one of them.

Q. What do you love most about this work you’re doing?

A. The most fulfilling part of my work is witnessing my students improve their skills and confidence. Just as I experienced gratification in teaching skiing for many years, I find the same satisfaction in teaching behind the wheel. Sharing my passion for safety, creating a positive learning environment, and seeing others progress in this important life skill brings me great joy.

Q. Who inspires you?

A. My daughter and my family are the ones who inspire me because they enrich my life and give me the opportunity to learn about myself and my relationships every day. However, Dave Bird, the long-time owner, and operator of the previous driving school in Fernie, serves as a significant inspiration. Years ago, before his retirement, he expressed how fulfilling this work was because his lessons directly impacted the lives of his students and beyond. He believed that his job prevented accidents and casualties on the road that might have occurred if he hadn’t been teaching new drivers. His ability to do good for people, both directly and indirectly, was motivating and encouraging when I was starting my Driving School.

Q. What is one thing – industry related or not – that you learned in the last month? 

A. I discovered the joy of seeking help when needed and realizing that I don’t have to do everything by myself. Learning to set positive boundaries and focusing on what I can do rather than dwelling on barriers has been a valuable lesson. Slowly, I’m gaining confidence in saying no and understanding that things will still be okay.

Q. When you’re not working, how do you spend your time? 

A. Most of my free time is dedicated to spending quality moments with my daughter. During the winter, I indulge in the exhilaration of skiing and immersing myself in fresh snow. In the summer, I enjoy tending to the yard, digging in the dirt, and embarking on drives along backroads in search of hidden treasures. When I find myself alone, Kiki, my cat, keeps me entertained with her playful antics.

Q. How long have you lived in Fernie? 

A. Fernie has been my hometown since my childhood. I attended both elementary and high school here, and this place and its people hold a special place in my heart. While my adventurous spirit took me to new places in search of the perfect powder turns, I returned to the Elk Valley in 2008 with the intention of raising my daughter here.

Q. What is one thing you love about Fernie? 

A. The ever-changing seasons are what I adore the most. I particularly relish the vibrant fall season, with its crisp mornings, warm afternoons, and the enchanting night sky where Orion takes center stage.

Interested in coworking in Fernie, BC?

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