Happy Stories: A New Beginning – Ian & Amanda

 

Happy Stories A New Beginning

Covid-19 has made sure that the past few months have not been fun – and we’re not out of the woods yet, either. The impact of the pandemic has been far-reaching and it has, very sadly, reduced some people’s lives to rubble. Out of the ashes, however, great things can rise…

We’ve put together a series of blogs, in which we’ve spoken to a selection of people who have bought a Time For You (TFY) franchise, and are delighted to share their happy stories.

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First up, we spoke to Ian Thompson who co-owns the Time For You Amersham franchise, with his wife Amanda, in leafy Buckinghamshire.

What Did You Do Before Buying Your Time For You Franchise?

Before TFY, I worked for the John Lewis Partnership (JLP) for 30 years, from the age of 16, originally part-time whilst still at school. I started in Waitrose stores but went on to work for departments attached to the Waitrose Head Office (in Bracknell) and then the Corporate Head Office (in London, but still for Waitrose). During this time, I always lived in Milton Keynes and commuted in the early days of my career but, for the last 12 years, I worked remotely from home.

Was There A Reason Why You Bought The Franchise? What Led You To Make The Change?

In 2010, during a department restructure, I was offered voluntary redundancy. After some serious consideration, I decided to accept the redundancy and look for a new way to make an income. My main reason for looking for something else was to try and improve my work/ life balance with an income that could offer me flexibility. Also, if I decided to stay with JLP I would need to relocate to work full-time in Bracknell. This was not a move I wished to make, as all my children were in Milton Keynes and my stepchildren were studying for GCSEs and A-Levels – so this was not a good time to move.

Was It A Difficult Decision To Make? For Example, Did You Have Worries And Concerns? If So, How Were These Put To Rest?

Having worked for just one employer for my whole professional life, it was a difficult decision to make – but working for myself seemed a better option than changing employers.

My main concern was not to waste my money buying into a franchise that either would not work or that I would not enjoy running. Also, it was important that any franchise would improve my overall financial situation and lifestyle.

I spent a lot of time looking at different types of franchises, in different industries. This made me realise that the type of franchise I needed had to have a proven track record, low start-up fees and an income from customers where I was not doing the work for them directly, so there was not a limit on my earnings based on the number of hours I worked in a week.

The cleaning industry looked promising and fitted in with what I had in mind, so then I started researching into different companies. I contacted three different cleaning franchises but TFY’s replies were the most promising! After a couple of phone conversations with Freddie Raynor (Time For You’s Managing Director), he invited me and my wife to go and meet with him and his wife, Ruth, at their home. The meeting was very successful!

Freddie and Ruth were both very upfront with information and answered all queries we had. Freddie even suggested that I contacted existing franchisees to have a chat with them. This I did, randomly selecting them, and the ten or so people I spoke to were all very positive and enthusiastic about their businesses. These conversations helped ease my mind about the potential and viability of TFY.

After trading for one year our income was good enough for my wife to give up her job and join me to run the growing franchise.

What Are The Key Benefits Of Being A Time For You Franchisee?

For me, the main benefit of TFY is having your own business to run, with the support of Head Office if you need it – but without interference, if you don’t want it.

Being able to work from home is also a great advantage, especially when you have school-aged children at home. As long as we have a mobile phone and an internet connection, we can work from anywhere! This has allowed us to increase the number of holidays we have taken, even if some of these have been working holidays.

Having access to other franchisees on TFY’s Workplace Forum is great but we also get to meet up with them at our annual AGM and training events throughout the year. This means we are not working in isolation and can help each other with suggestions and advice.

What’s Surprised You The Most About Your Time For You Journey?

Nothing has really surprised me that much during my journey, it is pretty much as I’d expected. The surprise is more from my family and friends who are surprised how much improved our lifestyles are, always stating: “What?! Another holiday?!”

If You Were To Recommend A Friend To Become A Time For You Franchisee, What Would You Say?

I would always say JUST DO IT! You won’t regret it!

I would never recommend something to a friend that I wasn’t 100% confident it would work for them – to the extent that one of my son’s has been a TFY franchisee for the past five years and I would not risk that if I didn’t believe in TFY.

For more information on becoming a Time For You franchisee, or if you have any other questions, please contact us here.

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Great Pull-Out Quotes:

“After trading for one year, our income was good enough for my wife to give up her job and join me to run the growing franchise,” – Ian Thompson, TFY Amersham.

“I would never recommend something to a friend that I wasn’t 100% confident it would work for them – to the extent that one of my son’s has been a TFY franchisee for the past five years and I would not risk that if I didn’t believe in TFY,” – Ian Thompson, TFY Amersham.

“My family and friends are surprised how much improved our lifestyles are, always stating: ‘What?! Another holiday?!’” – Ian Thompson, TFY Amersham.

“Being able to work from home is also a great advantage, especially when you have school-aged children at home. As long as we have a mobile phone and an internet connection, we can work from anywhere!” – Ian Thompson, TFY Amersham.

“Having access to other franchisees on TFY’s Workplace Forum is great but we also get to meet up with them at our annual AGM and training events throughout the year. This means we are not working in isolation and can help each other with suggestions and advice,” – Ian Thompson, TFY Amersham.