Preparation is key
Uncategorized | Jun 08, 2017
Running a guest house can’t be too different to being a Healthcare IT Consultant – can it? At the moment I spend copious amounts of time talking to people √, smiling politely √, managing a diary √ and fielding issues and problems √. We cook, we wash up, we clean. This will just need to be multiplied by a factor of about six which doesn’t sound like too much of a problem, does it? I do a mean cooked breakfast, including the tricky poached eggs. And of course with my nurse training have made a fair few beds in my time. Andy, on the other hand, still needs a little more practice (watch Andy stuffs a duvet cover!)
To prepare ourselves I joined us up to Airbnb, but we found that people asked to stay when we were busy, or not in the mood for being nice (doesn’t bode well!) In fact Andy wasn’t very keen on having strangers in our house (doesn’t bode well at all!). Until the time some Scandinavian Beauty Queens requested to stay while I was away for the weekend. Suddenly he was very keen to be part of the great Airbnb experience! Airbnb – the enemy of the guest house owner – promise I won’t mention them ever again!
We had more success from working with a local language school, and have had a few Italian youngsters to stay. We provide bed, breakfast, packed lunch and dinner and have gone over and above by also throwing in the Fisher taxi service. The experience has been positive on the whole, bearing in mind the students live much closer to us than our B&B guests will. Eating at our table and sleeping in the room next to us. It has taught us tolerance and hospitality, and the gifts of local Parmigiano have been well received!
In May we took part in a weekend training course to learn how to set up, market and run a B&B. Yes they really do exist! Karen at the B&B Academy inspired and enthused us. We were already aware of much of the content, but the afternoon learning about advertising and social media was invaluable. We have developed an essential network of like-minded individuals who like to clean, cook and make people happy. The course has prompted me to join Twitter (@Fishersdream – please follow us) and start a blog. All in the name of marketing, with the aim of getting everyone hooked before we find The One – is it working yet?
One area that we have probably under-estimated is our physical stamina. We love to walk, especially across our local common with Bella – our little dog. I walk from the tube to work – but then sit at a desk most of the day. We both wear a Fitbit, so know how difficult it can be to get to the magic 10,000. Colleagues at work nag me to take the stairs, but I don’t often have to go up with an office in the basement! I run up the three flights of stairs at home without too much trouble. But I have no doubt that our new life will be much more physical than our current one. Now that will be a challenge.