"There is never a dull day..."

The London House franchise provides a route into a very rewarding career for both sexes, affirms franchise owner Annelie Salter

With her London House franchise generating a good monthly turnover, franchise owner Annelie Salter has defied gender convention by building a successful business in what is deemed a male dominated industry. "After working in the financial services for 18 years, I was keen to find a new venture that would utilise my existing skills and commercial and financial investigation franchise London House fitted this description," explains Annelie.

"Throughout my career, I have had male colleagues who have not taken me seriously because I am a woman, which is very frustrating as working in the financial services sector can provide a very rewarding career for both sexes. London House has never made me feel inferior, which is why I would recommend them to other women looking to go into business by themselves.

"As a London House franchise owner there is never a dull day - jobs can change on a weekly or even daily basis, for example repossessing commercial property, investigating fraud or supporting solicitors in a variety of cases. This means that I spend a lot of my time out in the field instead of behind a desk, which suits me."

As part of the franchise package all new London House franchise owners are provided with a copy of the operations manual and are required to complete a two-week comprehensive training course run by London House co-founder Brian Hughes, which covers all aspects of running the business. "London House's ongoing support and training has been great so far," continues Annelie. "Having someone to hand, who I can ask for advice and guidance ensures I do not make any avoidable mistakes.

"Investing in London House was a great decision for me because it has given me the opportunity to retrain and become a professional investigator, within an industry I know well. London House looks after their franchise owners by supplying them with leads from their national account contracts, which more than cover the monthly management fee.

"I have been with London House for almost a year now. Initially I purchased the Guildford, Sutton, Redhill and Kingston postcodes, and when the Reading postcode came on the market in March I seized the opportunity to expand my business. Since then, I have sold the Redhill postcode to cut down my mileage, so that I have more time to focus on marketing the business.

"To succeed in this line of work you need to be a quick learner and enthusiastic. Good organisational skills and a professional manner are also useful as you are dealing with businesses and the public in delicate situations on a daily basis."

Reported by Jess Sturman