It’s not every day a husband and wife set up to run their own separate businesses, let alone in the same sector. How much more amazing is it when their son leads the way!
Husband & wife team Graham & Kerry Flatman were already actively looking for a new opportunity when, with their son Matt, they visited the bfa Franchise Show. At the show they decided to talk to the Mac Tools team to discover more about owning a Mac Tools franchise.
Whilst Graham had previously worked in sales and Kerry as a psychiatric nurse, it was their son Matt who had the industry experience as a Garage service manager & technician. It didn’t take the Flatmans too long to arrange a van ride with a Mac Tools franchisee to find out a bit more about life on the road and they really liked what they saw and heard.
Originally it was Matt…. then Graham and finally Kerry saying, “I can do that!” that prompted the Flatmans to decide on their exciting new family venture. Now they needed to find suitable locations.
An opportunity for 3 franchise locations came up on the Hampshire – Dorset border near the market town of Ringwood and they took it. The biggest challenge? Finding the right property with “enough space for all the vans!” They explain, “everyone thought we were a bit crazy, but we are very excited about our future.”
“Matt’s background and technical skills have been invaluable and when you add this to the training which was amazing, we couldn’t have had a better start” adds Graham.
Graham loves being out on the road in the van, meeting new people and building new relationships with his clients. “Mechanics love the banter and engage to help build my knowledge of tools. They buy from me. It’s all about trust and relationships.”
The Flatman family all agree that it is an advantage working closely but they can’t help having a bit of friendly competition and it really works well if one of them runs out of something that the other ones have.
Looking to the future, Graham & Kerry can see a time when they have more vans on the road and are able to retire, leaving Matt to run everything as they enjoy the benefits of their hard work. Matt is also excited at the opportunity to be a multi-van operator.
Mac Tools is part of Stanley Black & Decker, the world’s largest hand and power tool manufacturer, a $12 billion organisation. Mac Tools franchisees are trusted distributors of what are considered to be the best quality tools on the market to customers such as car dealerships, automotive repair shops, manufacturing units and engineering companies.