Member Profile – Kate Oliver & Bianca Johnson

In honour of Women’s Month, we have two profiles in August!

kate_oliverWhat is the name of your business and what is your role? I am the marketing and general manager of iNsingizi Lodge and Spa

Describe your business in two sentances. We are an intimate spa, as well as a conference and wedding venue specializing  in making our guests feel totally relaxed and pampered. Our functions are all intended to reflect our guests personalities while they enjoy the occasion, fully confident that we will see to the detail.

How long have you been in business? iNsingizi Lodge and Spa has been in operation for about 14 years but has changed and grown over that time to what it is now. We haven’t stopped growing and changing yet and are building 4 new rooms having just completed our chapel – which overlooks a gorgeous little dam.

How did you get into this business? I have been in various forms of the hospitality industry for as long as I can remember and found myself at iNsingizi 3 years ago, after I was phoned and asked if I knew any one suitable for the position! After listening to what they were looking for I decided I was the perfect person! I applied and as they say the rest is history!! I have to say it was one of the best decisions I have ever made and everyday I realize how lucky I am to live and work in such an amazing part of the country

What makes you go to work in the morning? There are so many reasons to get up in the morning, esp when you are woken by guinea fowls or rock pigeons outside your bedroom window. Everyday is different and for me the people I meet make it exciting – you never know who is going to cross your path and what interesting things you can learn. I work with amazing people who make me laugh and when I am away marketing the business I am totally calm knowing that everything is under control at the lodge and the guests are receiving awesome care.

What is your favourite part of your work day? My days are so varied that to pick one time is tricky but I think it comes back to people and spending time getting to know new people and seeing them enjoy iNsingizi as much as we do. It is a special place and being able to share it makes each day wonderful

Your secret to business success is? Attention to detail is important and making your guests feel really special and cared for. Ensuring your staff are happy will also ensure your guests are happy and have the best time

What is your business goal for 2013? Our goal at iNsingizi this year and every year is to ensure the best experience for our guests and to grow the business on a monthly basis. This can only be achieved by ensure no little thing is overlooked – it is the little things that people remember.

[divider]solid[/divider]

bianca_johnsonWhat is the name of your business and what is your role? I am the newest Concierge Consultant with Leavit2Me. I am also responsible for sales and marketing, and growing the business in KZN.

 Describe your business in two sentences. Leavit2Me is a professional concierge and errand service that gives the most precious commodity to our clients – TIME. We cater for large companies with in-house concierge services; Small & Medium companies with concierge services on retainer; and private clients and entrepreneurs with once-off concierge services.

 How long have you been in business? Leavit2Me was started by Helga Wild in 2007. The company dealt mainly with individual clients and signed Derivco as a corporate client soon after. Umhlanga Hospital signed on as a corporate client a year later. In 2011 Helga had the opportunity to work overseas and Leavit2Me was acquired by Nic Nortje of NKR. Leavit2Me has 1 permanent in-house concierge on staff, and is now focusing on expanding the business.

 How did you get into this business? My husband works at Derivco and loves the service that Leavit2Me offers. When I heard of an opportunity with the company I jumped at the chance to join them. I have spent 10 years in the travel industry and I was looking for a position that was more flexible, but still gave me the thrill of making people’s dreams come true.

What makes you go to work in the morning? I love that every day in this business is different. I love meeting and engaging new people and I’m really looking forward to all the special relationships that I will build with future clients and suppliers.

 What is your favourite part of your work day? My favourite part of my day is logging into our social media channels and connecting with all our current and future clients. And then going through the errands for the day, to see what exciting things I have to do today!

 Your secret to business success is? Focus on making clients happy. If they are happy they will spread the word about what you do. If they are unhappy, the word will spread faster and wider! Relationships are more important than profits in the long run.

 What is your business goal for 2013? My goal is to see Leavit2Me grow to be the most well known concierge service in Durban. We plan to sign 5 more Small & Medium businesses as retainer clients, and to have more individual clients that use us on an ad hoc basis.