Case study: Claire Larkin

Industries 
Razzamataz is a leading provider of performing arts, dance and theatre classes to children around the UK. Endorsed by Duncan Bannatyne of Dragon's Den!
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Razzamataz

  Opportunities:
In the UK
  Business Type:
Franchise
  Minimum Investment:
£12,000
  Training Provided:
Yes
  Home-based:
Yes
  Part time:
Yes
  BFA Membership:
Member - Associate

Claire Larkin, age 23, lives in Warrington. Claire has been the Principal of Razzamataz Chester since September 2011.

Razzamataz Franchise Opportunity

Q. How did you hear about Razzamataz?

Claire: I went to university in Carlisle, which is where Razzamataz Head Office is based. I was lucky enough to be involved with the overseas summer contracts as well as working with the UK based schools.

Q. What’s your background?

Claire: I did a BA Hons Drama and Musical Theatre degree

Q. Have you always wanted to be an entrepreneur?

Claire: Yes I have but to be truthful it was always something I thought I would do in the future. Initially I was accepted on a drama course in London but the cost was so huge that I decided against it. When the opportunity to buy a Razzamataz franchise came up I felt that it was to good an opportunity to miss. I signed my contract when I was only 21 because I felt there wouldn’t be many opportunities to combine running my own business but still be creative.

Q. How did you finance your business?

Claire: The launch was through personal savings but I also got finance through Razzamataz Head Office

Q. What are the best things about being a Razzamataz Principal?

Claire: Being my own boss and the flexibility in which that provides is great. The weekly running of the school is the really fun bit and the feedback from parents who say I am helping to build their child’s confidence is really rewarding.

Q. What are the most difficult aspects of running your own business?

Claire: I don’t love sitting in front of a spreadsheet! You have to be really organized and self-motivated as there is a lot to get through on a daily basis if you want to succeed.

Q. What advice can you offer other people going into business?

Claire: Surround yourself with the right things and positive influences. I have an ‘Inspiration Wall’ where I keep everything I have achieved like cuts outs from local newspapers, theatre programmes from Razz shows and letters from parents. It really helps me stay motivated if I can see all that I have achieved. I also think it is really important to keep in touch with other Principals to share ideas and just generally keep your spirits up.

Q. What’s a typical day like?

Claire: Monday is usually my banking day, as I like to get that out of the way and just generally catching up on phone calls and enquiries. I try to structure each working day so I focus on one thing. For example it could be a day for planning shows or reviewing my marketing or PR plans. Fridays I always keep clear for preparing for Saturday’s Razz.

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