We interviewed our winners from the 2018 National Retail Awards. Narell Hall and Karen O’Neill from Karnon Enterprises Pty Ltd. Narell and Karen are business partners and sisters running Boost Juice Stores in five locations across Brisbane, they are also the winners of our Franchisee of the Year award.
Where did your retail journey begin?
Both Karen and I put our hands up for redundancies from the State Government after 20+ years working across various departments. This, combined with a little midlife crisis and we ended up in the retail world. Our first Boost Juice store in Sunnybank was opened in July 2013. We thought running our own business and being our own boss would be very rewarding – we were right!
What was the biggest challenge you have faced so far as a retailer and how did you overcome this challenge.
Boost Juice is generally the first job for a lot of our staff, which can pose certain challenges however is also incredibly rewarding, especially when you get to see their progression first hand. We invest a lot of training and money in training our staff. We want to instil an awesome worth ethic into the next generation and provide them with all the tools they need to succeed. Providing constant constructive feedback to the staff is a great way to help with their development.
What is the greatest part of being in the retail industry in 2018?
As our founder Janine Allis has stated previously, “retail is relentless”. If you are going to survive in this industry you need the support of everyone around you. That comes in the form of industry associations, your franchisor (in our case), family and friends. But the best part for us is the love and support that we get from our huge Boost family – the franchisor and other franchisees from across Australia are always there to support and help each other.
As a community what do you believe retail can do to grow and overcome the adversities the industry currently face?
The retail industry is definitely a challenging environment and one of the key strategies to survival is to stick together as a united front and not be afraid to speak up. Even though we are all extremely busy we need to find the time to participate and provide feedback on issues of real concern to our industry. We must be prepared to embrace change – things aren’t going to stay the same forever. Innovation is critical for success – you need to innovate, or we will stagnate and die.
What does the future hold for your business? What does winning your award mean for you?
Winning this award is a true testament to the very long hours we work “on” and “in” our business. We are very grateful to the NRA for this award and funnily enough, Janine Allis has just shared her words of wisdom with us all at conference – reminding us to take the time to celebrate our wins and enjoy that special time to sit back and reflect on your achievements.