The beauty industry: Breaking down the barriers

Living in Doncaster East in Melbourne with his wife and two daughters, George Zhou decided 2014 was the year for change.

Working previously as a data analyst and with a background in Information Technology, George and his wife decided to invest time into a business of their own.  

“I had always been interested in owning my own franchise, however knew there were a lot of choices out there. I wanted to do my homework and search for the right business fit," George said.

"At the time, my wife had been visiting Australian Skin Clinics and liked the treatments that they had on offer, so she began to conduct research on the company.

“I studied further industry reports and found that the beauty industry had been growing rapidly, especially over the past two to three years."

The franchise model of Australian Skin Clinics assisted George in his decision to become involved in the company.

"Australian Skin Clinics offers both proven return on investment and a sense of flexibility that’s not found in larger enterprises," George said.

"At the time, Australian Skin Clinics was well known in Queensland however had only just began to have a presence in Melbourne, so I saw massive potential for growing the brand in Victoria.

'Having the backing of a brand such as Australian Skin Clinics to generate a successful business has really helped to fast track the clinic's growth. I have access to proven systems, processes, ongoing training, as well as operations and marketing support."

George began working with Australian Skin Clinics in November 2014 at the Emporium clinic in Melbourne CBD and admits the change from employee to employer was something he had to adjust to.

“It’s certainly a life change. Becoming a franchisee requires a lot more responsibility - but it was a responsibility I was ready for,” George said.

“The clinic manager looks after the team and the management side of the business, and I focus on the marketing and recruitment side.”

During the four months George has owned the Emporium Australian Skin Clinics, sales have increased by 50 per cent on a month-to month basis - a feat which saw him take home the coveted title of Australian Skin Clinics Franchisee of the Year at their annual conference.

“My goals over the next two to three years include expanding and opening another clinic, as well as becoming the number one clinic in the country,” George said.

“When I started we were number eight or nine. We're currently number four or five, so we're well on our way!"