"My Northwood franchise has allowed me to have a career while still being there for my children"
Northwood franchise owner Heidi Gill has successfully combined raising her young children with running her own business.
For many women raising young children and having a career is often a juggling act between the two, however for Heidi Gill operating her Northwood franchise has enabled her to have a career without sacrificing the time she spends with her children. "I have two children aged eight and four," reveals Heidi. "Running my Northwood franchise gives me flexibility so that I can spend time with them and when they are ill or it is the school holidays I can work from home. If I need to catch up on work I can do it in the evenings when the children have gone to bed which, because they are young, is quite early. My Northwood franchise has allowed me to have a career while still being there for my children."
Heidi began looking into franchising after having her first child. "I used to work in direct sales, however it involved working long hours and when I decided to start a family I took a year off. After that year I started looking into setting up my own business and looked into franchising as it took away some of the headache of starting a new business because there is someone there to help who know what they are doing."
While researching into prospective franchise opportunities Heidi came across Northwood. "The opportunity stood out for me because I had a keen interest in property so I knew a bit about the industry," she reflects. "Also it was a unique property franchise because of its guaranteed rental income and it mainly involved working the hours of nine to five."
Before launching her Nottingham-based franchise in February 2003, Heidi received full training as part of her franchise package. "The training was intensive and fully prepared me for the launch of my business," she explains. "Since my launch the support has been very good. Every time I have needed something the franchise office team is on hand to help, and the support has only got better as the network has grown. As well as support from franchise office, I am also in contact with other Northwood franchise owners nearby and the entire Northwood network meets up once a year."
For Heidi Northwood's unique selling point is its Platinum Guaranteed Rental Scheme is one of the main benefits of owning a Northwood franchise. "I would recommend Northwood to prospective franchise owners because as well as its guaranteed rental income, with Northwood you have the support and backup of a well known and experienced brand," she continues.
Achieving a turnover of £248,000 last year, Heidi admits that running her business can be stressful at times but she enjoys the good quality of life that it provides. "I like the flexibility of running my own business and that I can fit it around my family needs," she comments. "I also like the fact that it has given me the lifestyle that I want."
Having recently employed a manager Heidi is planning to grow her business: "Now that I have a manager I will look into opening further branches. At the moment I only do rentals so I will also look into moving into sales as well."
Reported by Derin Ibrahim
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