Kleeneze: Debra Williams and her successful door-to-door catalogue business

Door-to-door catalogue businesses appeal to working mums for many different reasons. Here, Debra Williams tells us how Kleeneze helped her to find the perfect work-life balance and boosted her life skills too.

Door-to-door catalogue businesses appeal to working mums for many different reasons. Here, Debra Williams tells us how Kleeneze helped her to find the perfect work-life balance and boosted her life skills too.

Reasons for seeking out alternative employment
Debra Williams thought she had a job for life at British Gas. She worked as a personal administrative assistant to the regional sales manager and had been employed at the company for 17 years. But she was made redundant and forced to find another source of income. She worked alongside her husband in his construction business while being a stay at home mum for several years, but sadly the recession hit and the business went under.
At this point, Debra’s youngest child was six. ”I managed to find a part time job from 9am to 3pm, ”says Debra. ”But I was still suffering from the consequences of the business going under. I found it hard – I wasn’t mentally capable of holding down the job and basically I got the sack.”
She was left with the dilemma of wondering what she was going to do. ”I had got to the age of 40 and had bought a horse,” she says. ”I had always wanted to do that and thought there should be more to life than just work and stress. But I knew I couldn’t financially justify it and I needed to find an income that would fit around my family and be flexible. I wanted to do something for myself and didn’t want anyone looking over my shoulder and telling me I wasn’t hitting targets. Then I saw an advert for Kleeneze. The work was aimed at anyone – either stay at home mums or people who were already in full-time employment but wanted something extra alongside. I looked at the information and I got excited – I thought if they can do it, so can I.”

Kleeneze
The firm’s origins began in 1923 when Harry Crook set up business selling wire brushes in a shop in Bristol. By 1928 he had opened up 200 branches worldwide. Over the years, Kleeneze expanded to put a firm foot in the direct selling approach and eventually grew to having self-employed agents.
Debra, who lives in Colchester, wanted to become involved in Kleeneze, but start-up money was a problem. In the end, a friend put up the initial £150 on her credit card nine years ago with the proviso that Debra had a 14-day money back guarantee or had one month to pay back the initial investment.
”I started with 200 catalogues and I haven’t looked back,” said Debra, now 51. ”I made the investment back in the first 10 days.”
She puts catalogues through doors in a one/two mile radius of her house, and also supplements the home shopping aspect with training other people who want to become Kleeneze agents. ”At the moment, I’m pushing my business to grow so I work around 20 hours a week,” says Debra, whose son Ryan is 28, and daughter, Yanna, 15. ”Home shopping has not been affected by the economic downturn. We have lots of mums with young children who are Kleeneze agents. They get their children into the buggy and deliver the catalogues. They use the trip as a learning experience and ask the children questions such as ”How many red doors can you see?”. All you need is persistence and a good work ethic.”
No investment is necessary as new starters can start Kleeneze with the Break Free option.

Work-life balance
”My work-life balance is absolutely fantastic,” says Debra. ”I make around £800 a month – the biggest pay cheque I had was £2,060. I’m not one of the top earners for Kleeneze, because for me it’s not all about the money but time, balance and freedom. I now have three horses. Being a full-time mum for me is priceless. I have also found that becoming involved in direct selling has brought out other qualities in me. It has changed me as a person. I am now a foster carer too and have one child placed with me at the moment – I don’t think I would have had the confidence to do that if I hadn’t taken on my role with Kleeneze.”

www.mykleeneze.com/dwilliams





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