This week, we caught up with franchisee Jenifer. She told us how she’s growing her business at her own pace, but still making big bookings.
After a 20 year corporate career, Jenifer started her business as a way to create a big lifestyle change. Watch the full video to find out:
- What made her want to make a change
- How her new business is giving her more freedom and flexibility
- Why travel was a natural fit
- The different ways she’s finding her customers
- Which random conversation turned into a £40,000 trip to see polar bears on a cruise.
During the conversation, Jenifer told us that she’d had enough of corporate life.
“I had a 20 year corporate career. I sort of burnt myself out and had enough of it. But I didn’t want to work for anyone else. I was looking for something that I enjoyed doing or something that I was really interested in and travel was a natural fit for me.”
That love of travel was inspired by her grandparent’s experiences.
“Back in the 1920s and 1930s, one of my grandfathers was going to work on the steam trains down in Argentina. And the other had travelled all around Switzerland, he’d lived in India and Africa. I saw all their photos and I think that inspired me a lot.”
She’s also a huge fan of getting off the beaten track and exploring new places and cultures.
“Cambodia for me is a big one, I travelled way back in 1997, long before it was even a backpackers destination. I love India – I’ve been there several times. And I spent a couple of months in Columbia and South America. I stayed with a local family, did Spanish language school, and then travelled all around.”
All that travel experience comes in really handy when talking to customers about their ideas for different holidays.
One friend is currently planning an interesting walking holiday that came up over lunch. And another old friend had seen that Jenifer had a travel business, then randomly bumped into her and started talking about cruise holidays.
“She was talking about going on a cruise with another friend and it came up that they’d both love to go and see some polar bears. I knew exactly what companies to speak to.
I managed to secure a really good discount because of different offers – even though the trip came in at £40,000, they’re really happy with the booking.”
Jenifer is loving building her business part-time
When you join The Travel Franchise, you decide the hours you want to work and the pace at which you want to grow.
Jenifer is now working part-time on her business alongside other commitments including volunteering. She told us the freedom to decide when and how she works is a massive bonus.
“That’s what I like about the franchise, because it’s completely up to you how you want to run it. So if somebody wants to work full time, that’s great. But also if you want to work part-time, it’s really flexible.”
She also explained how it means she’s got more control over her lifestyle and where she works from.
“My parents are in their late eighties and don’t live close to me. They’re a couple of hundred miles away. So if I need to rush off and see them, I can go do that.
My sister lives in France and I had a really limited amount of time to be able to go over and see her. Now, if I want to go and stay with my sister, I can go do that.
I can work while I’m away. So it just gives me a much more flexible lifestyle that I can make fit around what I want to do.”
Her advice is to go for it, but at your own pace
Jenifer also has some words of wisdom if you’re considering following in her footsteps. They include taking advantage of all the support that’s on offer, which is the highest available in the industry today.
“Go at your own pace. Start with something that feels comfortable, then keep pushing yourself a little bit more and a little bit more. BDMs (Business Development Managers) are hugely supportive, so use them. They’ve got a huge amount of knowledge, they know what works… and what doesn’t. So listen to them!”
She also recommends becoming part of our friendly community.
“Other travel consultants have been hugely supportive. Everyone is so friendly and always willing to give you tips and help and advice, or point you in the right direction. Everybody wants you to be successful and everyone wants to help you get there.”
Watch the full video to learn more about Jenifer’s journey so far.