Maybe it’s the millennial curse, perhaps bloggers and vloggers are to blame, but for some reason we’re no longer satisfied with a classic career.
Thankfully, the term ‘job’ today has many modes beyond the 9 to 5 desk kind. Those wanting to take advantage of a flexible career that earns life experiences along with a wage packet can reap the rewards of self employment, part-time work or even becoming a business owner. Doing what, you ask? Take your pick. Travel, beauty, fashion, cuisine are just a few categories that blur the line between passion and profession. And all it takes to get there is a leap of faith.
For Claire France, it wasn’t so much a leap as a push that landed her in the position of Lifestyle Consultant for Temple Spa To Go – a national network of independent consultants who host skincare consultations and classes from home. Previously working as an accountant, Claire had little interest in beauty beyond finding a cure for her acne, but after a life-changing injury and second pregnancy, Claire saw the industry as a chance to leave her office job for good.
A moment of realisation
I was trained as an accountant, happily married, and my husband, Ryan was living out his dream as a professional footballer. Our careers allowed us to have a really lovely lifestyle, but in 2011 Ryan was injured, just as I was due to give birth to our second daughter. I felt like I had a couple of choices – I could either continue the office job and help build someone else’s empire, or start building my own and prioritise my family in the process.
Beauty never crossed my mind
As a teenager and into my early twenties I suffered badly with spots and breakouts. I was searching for a miracle cure and tried everything from microdermabrasion and laser light treatments to pills and acid creams, with no luck. Then I came across Temple Spa. I was given a prescription of products tailored to my specific needs, and my skin was completely transformed in a number of weeks. I never considered skincare could also solve my financial problems.
The new and improved 9 to 5
When I joined Temple Spa, my daughters were three months and four years old, now they’re seven and eleven. I feel very lucky that I’m able to take them to and from school every day, plus attend any assemblies, sports days, and events. After dropping the girls off, I like to go to the gym, before heading to my office at home. I catch up with my team, occasionally hold daytime classes or individual consultations, but I’m usually free to collect the girls from school, help with homework, and even prepare dinner before I hold an evening class, around three times per week.
It wasn’t a straightforward choice
I’m now an area manager for Temple Spa as well as a lifestyle consultant, earning more money than I thought possible, but that didn’t happen overnight. At the beginning, I continued to work as an accountant while I built up my Temple Spa To Go business. I believe everything happens for a reason – if I didn’t have to earn a set amount of money while Ryan was planning his next career move, I might not have achieved the success I’ve had so far. You have to be very self-motivated in this job, and not having set working hours means I can be on the phone a lot, but that’s my own choice. I love my job. Goals and rewards definitely help, too.
The job that keeps on giving
As well as financial freedom, this career has given me so much more than I could have ever imagined. I was confident before, but that trait has absolutely soared, I’ve gained a passion for developing people and made great friendships along the way. There are some incredible rewards, too. In my first year with Temple Spa, I was offered an all-expenses-paid trip to Marrakesh for my hard work, since then, the company has taken me on unbelievable 5* holidays to Antigua, Mauritius, The Maldives, and we’re off to Zanzibar in March. It’s amazing to get rewarded directly for your efforts.
Flexible working should be on everyone’s to-do list
If you want to start your own business, you’ve got to make plans and goals, get out there and be hungry to succeed. It’s all about taking that leap of faith. If your gut is telling you to try and have a little go with something, why not? You’ve got absolutely nothing to lose and everything to gain. That was my thought, anyway.