Extract from Article in Business Franchise Magazine (July/August issue 195)
Andy and Lisa Gamwell (that’s us) worked together for six years before deciding to go into business together in 2003. They now own four Domino’s Pizza franchises in Lincoln and Newark.
Did you both join the business at the same time?
Yes. Domino’s suggested that Lisa could continue working as a Domino’s store manager while I set up the business, but I felt she had a skill set we needed for the business.
How do you make it work?
We have similar personalities, but we also have different roles. It’s unusual to have the same skill set as your partner, so you need to define your roles in accordance with both your strengths.
You can talk your problems through at any time of the day, you don’t have to arrange a meeting, so issues can get sorted out immediately. It also allows us to work flexible hours. Lisa is expecting our first child in September so I can cover her or vice versa if we need someone to look after the children Or, for example, if we’re on holiday and there’s a problem, one of us can be on the phone working while the other one is playing with the children.
As with any new business it’s difficult to take holidays in the early years, but now we have built up a dedicated team we can rely on. We’re always on call while we’re away, but it’s not a problem. I don’t have trouble switching off because I don’t see it as necessary. If we get a phone call at 1am, it’s just part of the business, it’s our life.
Top tip: You both need to be interested and passionate about the business.