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Yorkshire expansion: Get Ahead franchisee extends territory into York and Harrogate

Yorkshire expansion: Get Ahead franchisee extends territory into York and Harrogate

Get Ahead franchisee Fiona Ibbetson has purchased an additional territory to capitalise on business success

Fiona Ibbetson bought the Get Ahead franchise for Leeds in 2018. After 20 years of working for a major northern retailer, working across multiple departments and managing teams, Fiona felt the time was right to realise her dream of running her own business. Since then, Fiona has enjoyed a successful three years and has now decided to extend her territory to expand her reach and develop the business further.

“The past few years have been a huge learning curve and a massively rewarding experience. I know I have developed both professionally and personally, whilst creating a successful, growing business and helping over 80 local businesses.

The COVID19 pandemic threw me, like many organisations, some huge challenges. Customer demand dropped and I had to balance running a business with homeschooling my children. But my business coach and franchisor Rebecca Newenham were so supportive. Along with the other Get Ahead franchisees, I definitely felt we were in it together.

As part of the post-COVID19 recovery, I identified and successfully applied for the Investment Readiness programme. The coaching I received has made a big difference. Alongside the work with my ActionCOACH, this helped me home in on the direction I want to take my business. My ultimate goal was to have all of West Yorkshire and parts of North Yorkshire as my Get Ahead region. Getting involved with the Investment Readiness Programme helped me to realise that I didn’t have to wait. I could start making some of that goal an achievable business growth plan already, starting with the purchase of the neighbouring areas of York and Harrogate.

Taking on the new region will enable me to network with a wider audience. To take on new clients from a broader area and recruit new virtual assistants to join my team. Though many of my clients understand the value of outsourcing, they also value working with local people, even if it is virtually. Extending my team of VAs will enable me to offer a local service to local clients, but in a virtual way that still has all the benefits for clients of not requiring them to have suitable premises for employees to work from or all of the employer obligations that go with taking on in-house staff.”

Get Ahead saw a substantial rise in franchising enquiries in 2020 and sold a record number of new territories. Rebecca Newenham, founder and director of Get Ahead said: “I am delighted that Fiona has decided to purchase an additional franchise and expand her region. Fiona is such a nurturing, patient and authentic business leader. She is totally focused on building relationships with a wide range of people for the greater good of the entire business community, not just to meet her own objectives. She is so generous with investing her time in developing her own team, supporting our wider franchise network and her clients.”

Get Ahead provides virtual marketing and business support services enabling businesses of all sizes and from all sectors to get ahead. From bookkeeping to blogging, database management to design and telephone answering to Twitter, their team of highly skilled virtual specialists delivers support on an hourly, project or ongoing basis. Their network of regional franchisees in Berkshire & North Hants, East Midlands, East Surrey, Leeds, South Yorkshire, Suffolk & Essex, West London and Wirral & Cheshire West, is expanding as more people take advantage of the opportunity to go into business for themselves, but not by themselves, with the support of the franchise behind them.

To find out more about franchising opportunities with Get Ahead contact Rebecca on rebecca@getaheadva.com or 01483 332220 for a copy of their free franchise prospectus.

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