Andy Crewe MOLLY MAID, Doncaster

A new lease of life away from Bob the Builder!

I WAS made redundant from my sales & marketing managerial position in 2007. Fed up with working hard for other people's gain and craving more control I discussed the idea of running a business with my wife Lynne. We realised that franchising was the best route for us because we could hit the ground running and use a proven business model.

We chose MOLLY MAID because it is a member of the British Franchise Association, has impressive branding and the MOLLY MAID team were open and honest about our expectations when we spoke to them. Domestic cleaning is also a large industry and the service is one customers can use repeatedly. Before signing the agreement we spoke to other MOLLY MAID franchise owners about their experiences and had positive feedback.

We launched our MOLLY MAID business in March this year. The comprehensive one week training course was followed by a visit from two Business Managers who helped interview staff and conduct house assessments. Ongoing support is available by email, telephone or through discussions on the website's forum The Mirror.

Lynne is in charge of the day-to-day running of the business and I am continuing to work part-time as a consultant while we establish the business. Lynne had left her midwifery job after the birth of our second child and the franchise has given her a new lease of life away from Bob the Builder! We love having the freedom to make the decisions and ability to schedule work to fit around family commitments.

At the moment we have two cars and four cleaners who clean on average 40 houses a week. By March next year we intend to have up to six cars operating in our territory and our plan is to leave the day-to-day running to the staff by year five, allowing us to focus on developing the brand in our territory.