Going into business with a family member can be tricky. But for Lesley and her sister Nicole, who joined The Travel Franchise in February 2019, it was an easy decision.
And one that has resulted in them becoming closer than ever… living two doors away from each other in Cardiff.
For years the sisters would go on joint family holidays and dream about ways they could work together, but it felt like a pipedream.
Until, that is, they came along to one of The Travel Franchise’s Discovery Meetings in Heathrow.
Having listened to co-founders, Paul and Steve talk, Nicole looked at Lesley and said: “This is it, this is what we’ve been waiting for!”
Lesley, who had previously managed estate agents and worked in retail management, trained with Nicole, a former sales director in fashion wholesales.
Within four months they had achieved over £140k in sales, despite only working part-time.
And after nine months they went full-time, working around school runs.
Their secret to success?
They attended all our supplier training days and listened to our Business Developer’s advice. They also carried their business cards with them every day, promoting the business at the school, kids’ clubs, or hairdressers.
Even during Covid, they secured multiple holiday bookings worth £25k-£30k.
With renewed vigour post-pandemic, they are looking at promoting themselves at wedding fairs and networking events and they have also made some £24k bookings recently.
“Some people say I’m mad,” says Lesley.
“Nicole and I have always been incredibly close, even when we were living apart. I couldn’t imagine being in business with anyone else.”
Lesley admits that to work with a family member, you have to have complete trust.
“There’s no clock watching. You’re never thinking, ‘I’ve worked more hours than them’ as you know implicitly, they work as hard as you do.
“When my children are ill, Nicole picks up the extra work, and vice versa. We cover each other’s holidays, school events and fam trips.”
Setting up in business together has been so successful, in fact, that Nicole and her family have moved from London, to live in Cardiff just two doors down from Lesley!
The sisters now join training sessions together and find working together even more fun and sociable.
“We are really glad we chose The Travel Franchise – it’s a great company to work for,” says Lesley.
“We are really pleased with the way the company is moving forward.”
“My advice to other would-be travel consultants is to be prepared for a lot of hard work and patience. It will be worth it as you get what you put in!”