Your Name and Age: Rachel Ray, age 45, Director and Founder of Bright & Beautiful, http://www.brightandbeautifulhome.com the nationwide professional housekeeping franchise business.
Tell us about your family: I am married to Rob and have two daughters, Ruby (13) and Lily (11)
What did you do before coming up with your business idea and how was it making the transition?
I worked across the world as a business consultant and accountant for 15 years before taking a career break to have my two girls. When the time came to return to work, I just knew I wanted to escape the corporate world and strike out on my own.
How did you get started?
My husband Rob, who then ran a property maintenance business, was asked if he offered a cleaning service. Rob said yes and asked me to look into putting a quote together for the client. Six months later I quit my job so I could work full time on the business and today we have 50 franchisees all over the country, employ over 400 professional housekeepers and have a £3.5m annual turnover.
What’s your favourite thing about running your own business
It has to be the fact that I’ve been able to help more than 50 women just like me to set up and run their own businesses too.
What’s the thing you least enjoy about running your own business
I’d really have to say the paperwork and admin but I delegate it to members of my team who are brilliant at it!
What has worked well about your business?
I wanted my business to really support and empower women at all levels and I really feel that we are achieving that very day; our clients who need their homes managed; our franchise owners who have a business which can earn a great income but fit within school hours; the teams who have fair employment rights; and impoverished families that the franchisees sponsor overseas.
I’m a big believer in blaming the process not the person. The great thing for our franchisees is that we’ve already come across pretty much every mistake under the sun so we can make sure they avoid them!
How do you fit in work with the family? Is your partner supportive of your business?
My husband Rob couldn’t have been more supportive and now it’s great to be a role model for my daughters of how a family can balance work and home life.
Are you working towards a financial goal for your business?
We’ve already reached a £3.5m turnover and we’re working towards tripling our turnover in the next three years.
Would you ever give up your business to do something else?
The beauty of this business is that we are able to diversify into complementary services, which is something we’re doing now.
Do you have an exit strategy?
The business consultant side of me says I should have but I really do love what I do too much to think about walking away.
Have you had your ‘I’ve made it’ moment? Tell us about it. If not when do you think it will come
It was in June this year when I was interviewed and featured in Good Housekeeping magazine talking about setting up the business.
If you have a flexible working business opportunity, please explain briefly what you offer and how people find out more.
Bright & Beautiful is a profitable, flexible, family friendly and ethical franchise opportunity that is on the cutting edge of the recession-proof, professional domestic cleaning industry. Full details of how to find out more are on our website, http://www.brightandbeautifulhome.com/domestic-cleaning-franchise-opportunities/