Missy's placeis a boutique day spa in Willoughby, Sydney, it has been in business for 20 months, it's profitable, it does great mani's, it was founded by Michelle Saper..... and we think its going to be the first of many!
Read this fabulous interview with Michelle Saper, founder of Missy's Place.
Michelle, why did you get into this business?
I wanted to create a place that not only was incredible for clients to experience but staff to work at.
I felt that there was a gap in the market, so many beauty salons and day spas but no where that not only could you pop in for a great pedi or great eyebrows but also have the perfect day together with your girlfriend.
Also coming from a spa background I was disillusioned with how so many of them operate and thought I could make a difference.
What have been two of the toughest moments in your business so far?
I hate having to have "conversations" with staff. I have always been one of the girls having a laugh and then to have to switch that off and have hard "conversations" because you are unhappy. I find that difficult. Also if you have to let someone go, that is very unpleasant. At the end of the day though I say to myself constantly "What is best for the business?" and try and remove how I feel personally about the situation.
I think the other facet is just the worry, especially in the beginning, will there be enough money, when will we start making a profit, when will the business be viable, is the business going to be viable!!! and is this normal, where we are at.
What has surprised you most about your business?
Actually that I haven't had to worry and we have done ok.
Also I'm touched by how many people go out of their way to help. I have clients that actively go out of there way to make everyone they know come to us. What I have learned is it doesn't matter how many magazines you have been in or tv or marketing really. My business is successful for one reason...word of mouth, a great pedi is the best marketing I can do.
What has been your biggest disappointment about being in business.
Sometimes people don't always do the right thing and that takes me awhile to get over.
What have been two of the greatest highlights/achievements/successes of your business?
I think one night after we hadn't been opened that long, everyone had gone home and I sat down, looked around and thought I made this, I actually did it.
I still think that it is amazing to have an idea to do something and before you know it you have a group of ten girls in the garden having a hens party laughing, a mother and daughter having a memorable day together and someone else coming out of their room saying that is the best facial I have ever had. I think wow this is amazing.
Also I am so proud to have the staff I do, that they love coming to work and they are all really kind to each other. We laugh alot and I love that. I always say it doesn't matter how beautiful the surroundings are, without them there is no business.
Is there anything you would do differently if you were starting again?
I would try really hard to be less obsessive about the business as a whole. I would be thinking about it 24 hours a day, about how to make it work, I haven't been very good at balancing my life and switching off and definately at times it has been all consuming. At the same time if I didn't do that it might not be where it is today. This year though I am trying to realise I have a fantastic team who know what they are doing and can let go just a bit.
What inspires you?
The idea that I can create amazing experiences for people. When I have an incredible conversation with a client and both of you go away feeling completely uplifted.
That I can make a living out of something I feel passionate about.
Also decor...I just love homewares.
If there was one piece of advice that you wish you had been given when you started out, what would it be?
It doesn't matter how amazing your staff are, how much your friends and family are committed to you and your vision, no-one will ever care about your business as much as you do...and be ok with that.
If you were given $20,000 to spend on your business (only on the business) how would you spend it?
I would love to put some money into my garden the rest I would put into Missy's Place number 2!
If you are in Sydney why don't you get a mani at Missy's place; if you are not in Sydney just take a look at www.missyspace.com.au and simply imagine!