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IN MY VIEW


Don’t Let The Recession Hold You Back


KICKICARLSSON-BOYD IS MANAGING DIRECTOR OF DRÖM UK LTD, SPECIALISTS IN THEDESIGN, SUPPLY AND INSTALLATION OF LUXURY BESPOKE SAUNAS, STEAM ROOMS, FEATURE SHOWERS AND WELLBEING ROOMS.BORN IN SWEDEN, KICKI CARLSSON-BOYD GREW UP APPRECIATING THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF WELLBEING AND FOUNDED DRÖM UK WITHBARRYSMITH 11 YEARS AGO.HERE SHE EXPLAINS HER REASONS FOR EXPANDING THE COMPANY IN THEMIDST OF A RECESSION


As we all know, a sharp fall in the construction industry output led to the UK entering a double dip recession in recent years. Whilst a number of other businesses tightened their belts and nervously saved their money, Dröm UK refurbished their 4,000 sq ft Surrey showroom with a luxury range of bespoke saunas, steam rooms, feature showers and wellbeing areas. The reasoning behind this was simple. It is all too easy to start to worry and even begin to lose confidence in yourself, your company or your products. Stay focused, believe in your ability and never react to other people’s loss of confidence in a negative way. The economy forces people to take a good hard look at their assets and outgoings. Luxuries such as expensive spa days and gym memberships are put on hold. Instead of moving, a lot of people look to refurbish their homes, with bathrooms being high on the list as resale values could bring an 80-100% return on investment. So we decided to focus on the products that gave us the best return with the least risk and concentrated on showing the market how you could invest in bringing the expensive gym wellbeing experience into your own home at an affordable cost to enjoy for years to come. Wellbeing is very important during the stress of a recession. Everyone wants to feel better, and the health benefits of water and hot and cold treatments are well documented in a variety of newspapers and magazines, and have been enjoyed since Ancient Greek and Roman times. We did however have to adapt the product range we had to offer and reluctantly stopped selling some of our lower profit making items. We also felt that we had to show our customers the type of quality products we offer – just viewing our images in a brochure was not enough. We had to entice them in to the showroom to feel, touch and experience


A


lot of people ask me “why did you decide to invest in and expand your company in the middle of a recession?”


importance of this. Customers appreciate a company that is willing to take responsibility for their products and to ensure that they stay in optimum working order over the years to come. Our Service department is now thriving as our clients ensure their saunas and steam rooms are regularly maintained and serviced, thus keeping their investment alive. My advice to work through the difficult times would therefore be: • Don’t get carried away by everyone else’s doom and gloom! Things may not happen as quickly as they used to so patience and hard work is essential.


• Even though the risks are obviously higher, stick with your beliefs and have faith in your abilities. Never underestimate determination!


them for themselves. It is important to maintain the trust and confidence of our market, and especially the high end sector, who are getting more careful with which suppliers they use for their projects. They need to know that their chosen company has confidence in itself and will be around in the future for maintenance and warranty work if required. It is important to prove that you believe in yourself.


So we took the risk and invested. We rebranded and unveiled a new website too. We are already seeing results from this as more architects and clients visit the showroom on a regular basis and the feedback from this has been excellent, resulting in an increased order book. A decision to diversify slightly to maximise on all potential sales opportunities was taken. As well as offering a consultancy service to architects and clients we also decided to focus on after sales service. Don’t forget the


Some important points to remember are: • Products – source good quality, innovative, unusual products. Have a curious mind and a passion for what you’re selling. Customers need to have confidence in the quality of the product they are buying in difficult times (and the good times too!) and your enthusiasm and complete faith in what you are offering will help to reassure them.


• Customer Service – This is obviously of the utmost importance. Give the customer the best service possible at all times and always remember to LISTEN to their wants and needs.


• Employees – it can sometimes be very easy to blame employees for difficult workplace situations in the depths of an economic recession. Look after them and value them, in good times and bad, as they are your support and often your inspiration.


We are all struggling to find our way in these difficult times, but if we are prepared to adapt, listen, believe and stay true to ourselves we will all still be here when the UK starts to prosper once again. SPN


Dröm UK 01932 355655 www.dromuk.com


“IT IS ALLTOO EASYTOSTARTTO WORRY AND EVENBEGINTOLOSE CONFIDENCE INYOURSELF,YOUR COMPANY ORYOURPRODUCTS. STAY FOCUSED,BELIEVE INYOUR ABILITY ANDNEVERREACTTO OTHER PEOPLE’SLOSS OF CONFIDENCE IN ANEGATIVE WAY


96 June 2013 SPN www.swimmingpoolnews.co.uk


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