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Exclusive Interview: "With V.I.P I'm obtaining the work life balance I have craved for years!"

An Australian Franchisee Case Study

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Name: Ange (Angelo) Sercia
Location: Malvern East
Franchise: V.I.P. Fencing and Home Maintenance

Why did you go down the franchise route? And why did you choose your franchise?

I have been wanting to do something for myself for some time and had put it off and then my employers helped push it along by retrenching me at an inopportune moment, so much for job security.

Having said that I am glad they did as this has been the best move for me ever! I had been looking around at a few home service franchises and was close to buying one when I discovered V.I.P. F&HM and was so very glad I did as we (my wife and I) really liked the comprehensive franchise and training package, the marketing style, the fresh overall image and approach to business and the upfront and clear process to joining the team too name but a few.

What did you do before taking up a V.I.P. franchise?

I am a qualified hairdresser that ran my own salon for many years but prior to joining I was working on commercial building sites.

How did you raise the finance?

Bank loan.

What training and support did you receive initially and ongoing?

Training is something these guys are big on, it’s very intense to say the least but you learn a lot during the initial 8-week training package about not only building a variety of fences but just as importantly how to run a business.

Training does not stop there as you can continue learning more skills ongoing with the infield trainers, we also get helpful calls and emails from the office and have meetings which are great as we not only learn a lot from them but get to catch up with the rest of the team, such a great atmosphere and a lot of fun also.

What is a typical day for you as a V.I.P.franchisee?

My typical day consists of early morning email catch ups with clients regarding works required followed by building on site, taking work leads when I need them and doing quotes for people as soon as I can.

What challenges have you faced?

The initial training was very challenging to say the least but for the most part since that it’s been mostly been about keeping up with the work load from day 1 which is a good problem to have.

Has becoming a V.I.P franchisee changed your life, if so how?

Absolutely, it’s given me a whole range of new skills as well as honing some existing ones which I could take anywhere with me. It has also taught me some disciplines that I may have overlooked otherwise and in a short space I am well on the way to obtaining the work life balance I have craved for years.

What marketing/promotional tools do you use to grow your franchise?

We have a lot of this done for us which is great as staying on top of all by yourself is near on impossible. I do however seek testimonials from all my clients and keep photographic records of my masterpieces to build a solid portfolio on social media which is so important currently.

I also seek referrals and actively canvass local businesses that would benefit from the list of services I can provide them, this all works well for me.

What differentiates your V.I.P. franchise from the competition?

Clean image, excellent training, fantastic and informative social media presence and a genuine commitment to customer service and build quality.

In your opinion, what makes a successful franchisee?

A willingness to learn new skills, a willingness to follow tried and proven systems and a commitment to fly the brand flag high always.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of buying their first franchise?

Be honest with yourself regarding who you really are and whether you are prepared to make some sacrifices to get where you want to be next, and of course research properly what you are really getting into both up front and ongoing.

What are your plans for the future?

I am currently looking to put a staff member on to assist with my current work load and to possibly expand it beyond. Once I achieve that who knows what’s next?

Would you do it again?

In a heartbeat, as like all of my colleagues have stated my only regret is that I didn’t do this sooner!

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