How unwavering determination helped re-invent this franchisee’s life and career
Jay Sanders has always known that it takes a lot of guts and determination to achieve a dream. However, he could never have predicted just how much he’d be tested in his quest to become a parent.
Introducing Jay Sanders – Red Rooster Franchise Partner in Ashgrove, QLD
Now a proud dad to a two-year-old daughter, Jay applied that same level of steely determination in successfully transforming from an accountant to Red Rooster franchisee. He shares his challenges and explains his daughter’s remarkable journey here.
Jay, what’s been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
It would have to be the five to six-year period it took for my wife Anna and I to become parents. Whilst living in England we struggled with infertility. It was a very stressful period which created a lot of strain in our lives, careers and finances. Finally, we were given a life line – my amazing sister-in-law offered to be our surrogate and our beautiful daughter Harriet was born two years ago. She means everything to us.
That is incredible! How did Harriet’s birth change your perspective on life?
I’m an accountant by trade and was working at a big corporate job in London at the time with long hours. Once Harriet came along, Anna and I decided we needed to move back to Australia. The allure of corporate life began to fade, and I came to realise that Anna and I were no longer a twosome, but a family of three. I started to investigate options in Queensland and wanted a new career that wasn’t just 9 to 5pm, but one that gave me flexibility and a good quality work-life balance.
Why Red Rooster?
How did you wind up in the UK?
I grew up in Queensland and went backpacking in Europe in my 20s. I ended up living for a year in Switzerland working and snowboarding. I then moved to London and owned a pub with a couple of mates for a while called The Old Sargent. I ended up staying in London for 15 years working in corporate roles. I also met my wife there and funnily enough she was an Aussie just like me.
So, what inspired you to become a Red Rooster franchisee?
As I’d always wanted to run my own business, franchising felt like the right fit for me. Red Rooster appealed because I wanted to have support from an already well-established brand. My first ever job was actually at Red Rooster when I was just 14 and I still had fond memories of that period. It was also one of my favourite go-to meals that I’d get whenever I visited Australia, so I guess it was destiny!
What is your definition of success?
Knowing what you want to do and actually achieving it. I’ve accomplished a lot in both my personal and professional life by being determined. We’ve gone through really difficult times when it all just seemed too hard, but we’ve stuck at it. If you have that attitude, you’ll be a success.
outgoing | analytical | determined
What’s been your most satisfying moment in business?
Just getting through that very first shift at our store was one of them! Followed by the first day where everything went well. The relief of knowing “I’ve got this now” was a great feeling.
What are the challenges you currently face in your business?
Having full control over your store means it is going to only be as good as you make it. The biggest challenge I have at the moment is how to continue to improve my store’s performance by an extra 15 to 20 per cent.
Would you recommend Red Rooster to people looking to buy a food business and why?
Yes, I still believe in the brand. You’re always going to have some challenging days but that’s part of the business. Whilst not every day is going to be a win, you just need to keep working at it.
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