Tracy Braithwaite was driven and passionate about delivering professionalism to her clients. Her knowledge and expertise moved her from a steady, corporate position, into starting a small business venture – Braithwaite Property, a successful real estate services business.
“I love the fact that I can offer and deliver exactly what the client requires.”
Braithwaite Property helps clients understand their real estate needs such as their lease obligations, finding new premises, relocating to new premises, cost savings where possible, and provides market rates so that they understand they are paying the correct rate.
“My major client suggested that I start my own company as they were frustrated that I was not actually managing their properties and they wanted me to be hands on.”
Tracy Braithwaite was apprehensive about starting a business on her own, especially with home responsibilities and the potential business financial risks.
“My husband and I had a mortgage and our daughter was two years old, so it was not a decision I took lightly.”
After solid thought about the business proposal, she started small. Her first venture began with one client and one building to manage.
“I slowly built up the business and 16 years later, I still have my original client. “Being small, I can tailor my services to suit my clients’ needs. There is no red tape, the buck starts and stops with me. I also enjoy spending time with my children, so I have been fortunate to attend most school functions, sports and swimming carnivals whilst still working. Flexible working hours are great.”
Tracy strongly suggests that you familiarise yourself with accounting, taxation, legal factors, human resources, and financial costs for the running of the business, before making any bold business plans.
Tracy wishes she knew a few things before she started out in her real estate business:
- Listen to an accountant to grasp and understand all financial obligations.
- Understand that running your own business means you are accountable to all your clients, not just your boss.
- Know that not every new business is a good business – risk-taking is self-explanatory. Make sure the good aspects outweigh the bad, and be fully confident in your services and expertise.
The Australian Businesswomen’s Network allowed Tracy to meet other like-minded women, attend its enjoyable webinars, and read useful articles provided on the Australian Businesswomen’s Network website.
“Being a member of ABN has given me a very helpful resource at my fingertips. ABN provides information usually drawn on experience and expertise from within the membership group. As the membership is not profession specific, there is a wide-range of topics that are covered at a wide range of stages of businesses. “The ABN provides a forum to listen to others in similar situations and how they overcome or handled that situation.”
Tracy Braithwaite’s advice for starting a business:
- Engage with an accountant whom you feel comfortable with and listen to what they have to say.
- Be prepared to ride the roller coaster – the highs are great, but the lows can be low.
- Learn how to manage staff. It will save a lot of angst, time, and money.