As I often photograph entrepreneurs and usually chat to them about how they started in business during our shoot, I thought it would be interesting to ask several of them if they would like to tell us a little more about their businesses. So here is an entrepreneur spotlight interview with Judit Jozsa of FamilySafety and a formal (and informal) image taken of her recently at the studio (the fun red glasses are connected to the recent Health and Safety Day in Zurich!) Having seen Judit present recently at the Health and Safety Day in Zurich, and being able to see some of the products which can be purchased in action, I can highly recommend taking a look at her website – enjoy!
Tell me a little about you and your business – and how you got started?
I have been living in Switzerland for 4 years, following my husband’s career and giving up my 10-year experience in Human Resources in Hungary. Alongside bringing up our 2 children (7 and 10) and running a home, I decided to start my own business in 2013.
FamilySafety is a family business, dreamed and planned for several years before. The idea comes from our enthusiasm and commitment to personal safety. We believe that our life and the lives of our loved ones, their safety and health are the most important things for everyone.
My husband and I decided to start a website where we would raise awareness of personal safety and to promote the idea of conscious preparation for the everyday risks. We do not intend to cause panic, but to strengthen a healthy level of individual responsibility and concern to safety. In our blog (www.familysafety.ch) you can find tips, ideas, news of everyday safety issues in 3 languages. The products offered in our webshop prove that when it comes to safety equipment, you do not have to compromise on style, because we offer good quality and stylish, fashionable products.
As my husband still works full-time for a multinational company, I work on FamilySafety in the mornings, when the kids are in the school and my husband helps me at the weekends.
What do you wish you knew before you started your first business?
Everything about e-commerce! We had never worked in this branch before and we learn new things about website design, search engine optimization, social media and online advertising every day. Of course we need technical help and sometimes we pay the lesson when we hire someone who can not deliver the job as we expected. Starting our own business in a foreign country, where we are only just learning the language is also a challenge but luckily the Swiss are very open and we did not face any disadvantage despite the lack of language skills.
What advice would you give another person who wants to start a business?
Plan but not too long! If you have the key idea and the answers to the first couple of steps you have to take, just begin! There will be several ideas, opportunities will come up and even your key idea can alter a little bit, but later you will find the answers to those questions you doubted. As time passes you will have a clearer view and a more accurate aim what and how you want to achieve. Read and listen to every piece of advice but you decide what is relevant to you and your business.
What was the best piece of advice you ever got?
Always worth a question! I learnt this from my husband. Once he told me this and from then I became braver. I always ask or ask again even in situations when I am sure the answer could be no. And it works! People do not like answering “No”. And there is always a solution, a compromise, and with that you are one step further. I wanted to have a product in my shop but I would have had to buy a stock supply for 5000 CHF. I suggested a solution to the distributor and they accepted. I do not have stock and the distributor handles the stock and delivery. I just forward the orders to him. Of course the margin on the product is a bit smaller but as a starting business with limited budget I can have more traffic on my website.
For what in your life do you feel most grateful?
For my family. My parents, my husband and even now, when my children are bigger, they are all very supportive and helpful. When we started, I did not know what it would be like to work with my husband, but now we see how good we complete each other and can share the tasks among us.
What’s your favourite vacation spot?
I come from Hungary, where the highest mountain is 1015 meter high. I am thrilled about the mountains here in Switzerland – I cannot stop looking at them! I really like the Vierwaldstaettersee, where the mountains meet the lake. We have a big map above our dining table where we mark the places with red dots what we have already visited. It is not a surprise that the most dots are around the Vierwaldstaettersee.
Your house, containing everything you own, catches fire. After saving your loved ones and pets, you have time to safely make a final dash to save any one item. What would it be? Why?
Relevant question :-). Naturally we have a smoke alarm in the living room, a fire blanket in the kitchen and a small fire extinguisher at the corridor so we are prepared for fire. But of course anything can happen and in this case I would regret if something happened to our family pictures which we have taken in our life. We regularly watch them with our children and recall the nice places, people and moments from our memories.
FamilySafety Gmbh – www.familysafety.ch