SPOTLIGHT ON BUSINESS SUCCESS – SUCCESS STORY
At Murrison & Wilson we’re privileged to work with so many successful business owners and keen to showcase our clients’ talents. We’d like to introduce Elizabeth Bandeen: The Massage Therapist to share her real life business experience and offer tips to help business owners build up a successful business.
To keep up with Elizabeth visit www.elizabethbandeen.co.uk or twitter@bestevermassage
Ask Elizabeth Bandeen – successful business owner
Q: What does your business do?
A: I am a professional massage therapist based in the City of Glasgow. I help backs, necks, and shoulders feel epic again. The most common conversation starters I hear from clients are:
‘I work at a desk all day and have quite tense shoulders…’ and ‘I’m playing golf this weekend…’
No two days are every the same!
Q: How did you start running Massage by Elizabeth Bandeen?
A: I was made redundant 10 years ago and after several knockbacks and 7 weeks out of work, it was driving me crazy. I’d previously trained in massage therapy and been doing it on a voluntary basis. The decision to become self employed was the best I ever made. The Glasgow business community are an astounding bunch (so are my accountants!)
” Be super duper clear on what you want your business to look and feel like, don’t rush it, everything takes time to evolve.”
Q: How long has your business been running?
A: Just over 10 fabulous years.
Q: What was the biggest hurdle you faced starting up?
A: My biggest hurdle was getting members of my family to stop acting like car mechanics, ‘oooh I’m not sure about that..’, ‘Do you think it’ll work?’. Your family are there to support you and challenge you too. Once I got them ‘onside’ it was all rock n roll. They are super proud of me. That was in the beginning. I would say that as a business, staying relevant, and keeping up to date with technology is a bit of hurdle for me. Ask me anything you like about anatomy and I’m all over it, but ask my about the applications folder on my laptop and I’ll break into a sweat. Thankfully I have amazing mentors (including my accountants!), to help me learn.
Q: How did you chose where to locate?
A: I am based in the city centre, and it wasn’t so much the location, but who I was going to be working next to. I knew the kind of environment that I wanted to work in and it just so happens that the location is smack bang in the middle of our fair city. You can’t get more city centre than smack bang next to Queen Street Station, but even though we are in a very busy area, up here on the 2nd floor is a quiet oasis. Many people comment on it.
Q: What is your top tip for anyone starting up a new business?
A: Be super duper clear on what you want your business to look and feel like, don’t rush it, everything takes time to evolve. Believe in yourself and your business, do your homework, be realistic, get a professional to do your website for you, make the investment – the return is worth it. Get a great accountant too… I know what I’m good at, everything else I outsource (Hi Simon and Bruce). The Glasgow business community, or wherever you live, is just tremendous. If you don’t live in Glasgow find out about local business networking groups in your area, or email me and I’ll give you a hand!
Q: What has been your best day, so far, in business and why?
A: Every day is pretty euphoric to be honest. The best day is when someone sends me an email after a visit and says ‘you made a difference’. That’s a real fist pump in the air kind of feeling. It’s just nice to know that I have the ability to help my clients feel physically better in their own skin. Pain is invisible and can cause a fair amount of mental stress.
Another ‘best ever’ day in my business was learning how to do my accounts online! I was NOT finding it easy, and was getting myself in a right state about it. Simon asked me in to go over a few of the processes, guide me through it, and let me sit in the boardroom of the office working away until I felt confident about what I was doing. I really was tying myself in knots, but after Simon took me through it, nae bother. That really was a big win for me!
Q: How do new clients find you and you find new clients?
A: My website works very, very hard for me, and I work very hard keeping it updated. I recently had my website rebuilt by a small business champion and what a huge difference it has made. I find new clients by being active with networking, and always, always have business cards with me. I’m bound to bump into someone who has a sore neck or can’t turn their head.
Q: How do you kick start your working day?
A: I recently ditched the gym membership and started doing yoga every day. I just do a programme from someone on YouTube so it cuts out the morning stress of battling the M8 to get to the gym. A good strong cup of organic coffee (I drink 2 a day, used to be 5), and orange juice. I prep for my day the night before so I don’t have to rush around in the morning. I like to be organised and on time. I’ve found that the more organised I am, the less stressed I am!
Q: Why do you do think your clients keep coming back to you instead of the competition?
A: I don’t have competition. Seriously! I’m the only ‘me’ in Glasgow! I think people come back to me because I’ll always give them my best attention, and give them the best advice too that I know. I study in my free time, anything to do with the head, neck, and face is a particular interest of mine, so I stay ‘current’. Also I think that my consistency is a point of difference, and the ease of which people can book online helps too.
Q: If you could travel back in time is there anything you’d do differently?
A: Not a darn tootin’ thing. Everything has got me where I am today and I am very, very happy with my business and my life. I’ve always followed my gut instinct and had the best support ever from the Glasgow business community.