Health and wellbeing are a priority for Bernadette (Bernie) Brown — and with a CrestClean business, the Alexandra franchisee says she is able to achieve both.
“Wellbeing comes first, so I always make sure there is time for exercise,” she says.
Bernie, who bought a CrestClean franchise four years ago, gets up early in the morning to run and go to the gym, and spends many of her afternoons mountain biking.
“I enjoy the outdoors and keeping fit,” she says.
“My business is really flexible, which means I can fit work around family and exercise, which is great.”
Currently training to take part in the Queenstown Marathon 10km in November, Bernie says she discovered her love of running when she went on an Outward Bound adventure in her 20s.
“At the end of the course you do 21 kms and my aim was not to stop — I couldn’t believe that I kept on running! I started to enter a few events after that,” says Bernie.
“They put on a lot of events especially for women, and as you get older they target you a bit more so that you keep going. Running makes you feel younger than what you actually are, which is really good.”
Bernie previously worked as a cleaner for another commercial cleaning company, and then as a cleaner at her son’s school.
She made the switch to CrestClean after a health scare prompted her to revaluate her future.
“When I went for my first mammogram, they discovered I had a breast cancer lump. After surgery, I did a course of radiation and was living at Daffodil House for a month. CrestClean has the contract to clean there, which gave me the idea to own my own franchise once I had recovered,” says Bernie.
“I thought it could be quite good because I had a lot of experience in cleaning and it was an opportunity to own my own business.
“Now, my income is better than it was before. It’s really satisfying… I’m really proud that I’ve come this far. And I’ve even bought an electric van, I’ve had it a year now and I love it.”
CrestClean’s Central Otago Regional Manager Danny Mastroianni says Bernie is a great example of the work-life balance that can be achieved in owning a CrestClean franchise.
“Bernie is a role model for all of us, always smiling, being so active and energetic, and providing an outstanding service to all her customers, while also making time for her family,” says Danny.
“Customers love her and I have never received a single complaint about her during the almost five years she has been a franchisee.”