Jim's Mowing: Hard work pays off

Outdoors work with the independence of being his own boss makes Jim's Mowing the perfect franchise for Richard Baker. Derin Ibrahim interviews

The idea of being in an office and sitting at a desk everyday does not appeal to everyone and for those who prefer active outdoor work, mowing and gardening services franchise Jim's Mowing could be ideal. A farm labourer since leaving school, Richard Baker is used to the demands of working outside and when he decided that he wanted the independence that comes from self-employment he started looking for franchises where he could have this as well as continuing to work outdoors.

'I was fed-up of working for other people and was looking for potential franchises,' explains Richard. 'I was looking at several different franchises but I chose Jim's Mowing because it looked like the safest investment for my money as they offer a guaranteed income at a good price.'

Although Richard came from a manual labour background, many franchisees attracted to Jim's Mowing are previous professionals who like the appeal of working outdoors. Jim's Mowing is happy to look at candidates from any background as long as they have great customer service, motivation, strong communication skills and a genuine desire to work outside.

Before launching his franchise in West Northamptonshire in April 2006 Richard went on a training course provided by Jim's Mowing. The training includes five days at Jim's Mowing Head Office in Melbourne, Australia and a three day horticultural course in Kent. 'The training is great, they covered everything from ground maintenance to book keeping,' enthuses Richard. 'Even having opened my business I still go back every few months for more training. There is also constant support from head office and anytime I need advice all I have to do is call.'

In his first year Richard met his target turnover of £43,000. Having also built up a network of regular clients ranging from working couples to local authorities Richard's business is thriving. He reflects: 'What I enjoy most about this franchise is the independence I have of being my own boss, but I also know that the back-up from head office is there whenever I need it.'

Focused on growing his business, Richard is currently in a position to expand his franchise and is set to employ someone to assist him with the extra work he has acquired. Passing on his advice for success, Richard says: 'Be prepared to put in the hard work because it does pay off.'