Nick Barber found the consistent, profitable and rewarding business he had been searching for with commercial cleaning franchise, Minster Cleaning Services.
After serving with the RAF for over 16 years, Nick Barber was eager to take on a new challenge and pursue his ambition of being his own boss. So when the opportunity to take voluntary redundancy came up in 1996, he jumped at the chance. With little business experience behind him, Nick knew that franchising would be the safest and most successful route for him.
While attending a franchise exhibition in Birmingham, Nick bumped into an old colleague who told him about the success he had achieved with commercial cleaning franchise Minster Cleaning Services.
"By the end of our conversation, I had pretty much decided that Minster was the franchise for me and within two months I had joined the network," reveals Nick. "It's not a glamorous business but it's an essential service which every company needs through both good and bad economic times."
To ensure Nick was ready for the launch of his Northampton-based Minster franchise he attended a one-week comprehensive training course at the company head office, which covered every aspect of the business including operations, accounts, IT and marketing.
"By the end of my week's training, I felt confident that I had all of the skills and knowledge needed to run my business effectively," says Nick. "The first year or so of trading was a steep learning curve and even now, 16 years on since launching my business, I'm still learning, which is why I find the support of the Minster franchise team so invaluable."
Minster's dedicated support team also provides ongoing operational courses for franchise owners and their staff, regular branch visits and telephone support
"Another benefit of being part of a franchised business is the regular network meetings we have," continues Nick. "The Minster team and franchise owners get together to discuss success stories, give advice and receive industry legislation and cleaning standard updates. It's a great way to keep in contact with colleagues and keep ahead of the competition."
Since launching his business, Nick has developed his commercial cleaning franchise into a thriving success and can boast a team of over 150 cleaners to manage his service demand. To ensure customers receive the high quality service which Minster provides, Nick has a dedicated office team to help with the smooth running of his business.
"When I started, I involved myself in all aspects of the business" explains Nick. "Having this understanding of every level of the business means that I can provide the best service possible. Last year my sales increased by a further seven per cent – so we must be doing something right.
"Today my sole focus is to manage the business, making sure that all of my clients, and staff for that matter, are happy. I find it so rewarding to be part of a business that shares the same goals as me and know that I wouldn't be where I am today without the continued support of Minster and my great team."