Silviu Bompa was looking for a way to use his expertise, but have more time to spend with his young family.
Having managed a pub for several years, he knew a fair bit about management and cleaning so he looked around at various options. He found the award-winning ethical cleaning franchise Bright & Beautiful.
He’s only in the early stages of running his business, but he sees it as providing him with a challenging, interesting business and one which he can fit around his family.
Silviu came to the UK from Romania after graduating from university with his girlfriend – now his wife. They were initially in London to learn English and to find out more about British culture.
Their English course included a four-month work placement for which they were sent to Tarporley near Chester to work in a pub. Silviu was behind the bar and his girlfriend did cleaning and waitressing. They liked the place so much they decided to stay on.
Over the next seven years, Silviu was promoted up the ranks until he eventually became general manager. Two years ago his first daughter was born. He and his wife had been living above the pub and moved out before their daughter was born. Silviu’s wife was on maternity leave, feeling isolated, and he was working long hours, from 7am to 11pm. It was stressful for both of them and eventually his wife returned part time, but became pregnant again last year.
“When she got pregnant again, I started to think that I need to change something. I felt I was missing out on family time,” says Silviu.
He wanted something that was more nine to five, but he also liked being his own boss. Franchises seemed to offer a good solution so he started looking at cleaning franchises, given he had experience in management and cleaning in the pub. “I knew how that worked,” he says.
He hit on Bright & Beautiful. “I liked the concept and ethics of Bright & Beautiful. It really appealed to me,” he says. There weren’t any franchise areas available near where he lived, though, and Silviu needed to take over an established patch since he needed to earn straight away and didn’t have time to build the business from scratch. Fortuitously, earlier this year the Chester area came up for sale. It has been established for five years and so Silviu took over an existing staff and customer base which covers Chester, Tattenhall, Farndon, Christleton, Waverton, Malpas, Aldford, Churton and surrounds.
He was able to start work in July just two weeks after his second daughter was born.
He admits the first weeks were challenging as he had to put in a lot of hours and was still doing his job in the pub, but things have settled down a bit now and he has got new customers.
He has a team of four cleaners, two of whom work school hours and two of whom started earlier and finish later. “I’m happy to be able to provide school time hours as I know how important it is and it suits me as a franchisee too,” he says, adding that he has had a lot of support from Bright & Beautiful.
He can flex his time more around his family, although he is based at an office in Chester and his wife may join the team after her maternity leave.
“I’m excited to see where we are in six months,” he says.