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Ten Questions in Ten Minutes: With Janet Jackson (HRV Central and East Auckland)

Janet is a Franchise co-owner of healthy home ventilation systems’ company HRV Central and East Auckland. Prior to joining HRV, Janet was a successful McDonald’s franchise owner for 14 years in Hawke’s Bay. Janet shares her thoughts on work, life and how to cook the perfect fry!

Business to Business - What inspired you to own your own franchise?

Janet Jackson - Along with the responsibility of raising four children, I had always wanted to own my own successful business. I used to take my children to McDonald’s for a treat in the early 90s and would peer beyond the counter out to the kitchen and observe the quality, service, cleanliness and procedures the staff seemed to be following. The restaurant was popular, with customers filing through the door. So I thought ‘why reinvent the wheel?’ I’ll apply to become a franchise owner.

BtoB - Who has influenced you most professionally?  

JJ - Ray Croc, an American businessman who turned McDonald’s into the most successful fast food operation in the world. His actions in life were reflected in his quotes. ‘The two most important requirements for major success are:  first, being in the right place at the right time, and second, doing something about it.’ His attitude was if you work just for money, you'll never make it, but if you love what you're doing and you always put the customer first, success will be yours.

BtoB - How would you describe yourself as a business person?

JJ - Firm but fair, compassionate and understanding. I believe that communication is the key to building good relationships. My goal is always to train others to be able to do their job better and guide them to achieve their career and personal goals.

BtoB - What do you consider your greatest achievement?

JJ - Becoming the first female McDonald’s multi-store franchise operator in New Zealand. At 35 years old I started training from the ground up, which was daunting. There was lots of mopping floors and cleaning toilets before moving on to learning the exact way to cook the perfect fry. I did this for more than 12 months with no pay and no guarantees that I would be offered a restaurant at the end of it.

BtoB - With hindsight, what is the one thing you would do differently?

JJ - I would spend more money on leisure. It is easy to become so passionate about your business that you can lose the balance between work and play. As the years have gone by I am more focused on the value of health and happiness. Business is not just about making money, it is important to me to be proud of the product, but at the same time make a difference. I now co-own the HRV Franchise for Auckland Central and Auckland East and I am enthusiastic about improving the health of Kiwis across New Zealand and making a difference.

BtoB - Who do you find inspirational & why?

JJ - My late father who always held his head up high and got up and brushed himself off in tough times no matter what.

BtoB - What is the most inspirational book you have read recently?

JJ - Fabulous Thoughts on Being a Woman by Peta Mathias

BtoB - What is your favourite website and why?

JJ - Google; instant knowledge of anything imaginable.

BtoB - What is the first thing you would do if you became Prime Minister?

JJ - Put in place the right for all Kiwis to live in warm, dry, healthy homes, funded through tax credits. We've made it our mission to reinvent the New Zealand home ‘invironment’.

BtoB - What is the best thing about being in business?

JJ - Being free to make my own choices and assisting my staff develop into people who are excellent at what they do.