Extract from Bolton Evening News 8:56am Wednesday 6th October 2010
SEVERE dyslexia sufferer Lewis Fagan had a hard time studying at school and left early, without any qualifications.
But his disability has not stopped him from running a successful cleaning and home help company and now, the 28-year-old is planning to double his workforce.
Over the next 12 months, he hopes to see his team expand from 20 to 40.
And he claims the Government spending cuts could play into the hands of small companies like his Houseproud Cleaning Services and Home Help Services.
The boss of the Atherton company says possible cuts, along with a move towards giving vulnerable people, such as pensioners, more control over their own care budget could mean he gets more business.
He took over the company from his sister, Dee, who set it up before moving into beauty therapy, and he has gradually built it up over the past three years.
Mr Fagan left school with no idea what he wanted to do so he started helping out with cleaning at the care home his family owned.
He found he enjoyed helping people, especially older people.
So he then started working with his sister when the family sold the care home and later took over the running of her cleaning business when she decided to switch careers.
The business encompasses a domestic cleaning company and also has a growing arm, offering a home help service, which he says is more flexible and cheaper than services delivered via the council.
Mr Fagan said: “I have built up the company from having just two cleaners to now having 20 and they all have a pink logo uniform and work in people’s homes in pairs.
“They will clean to a high standard as we give them an intensive four-week training period.
“They are all enhanced CRB vetted and they will clean cars or help with shopping — they are very flexible.”
Mr Fagan, of Lovers Lane, left school early without any formal qualifications because of his severe dyslexia, but he has managed, through developing various strategies, to run and expand the company.
He has learned to cope with the problems dyslexia causes, though he still needs help with administration from his supportive mum, Elaine, to run the business.
Mr Fagan said: “We started with just two cleaners and 20 clients and now we have 20 women and about 250 clients, with more being referred to us through word of mouth.
“Those who qualify don’t know they can now get their own budget for home help and spend it on the kind of care they want and we are not as rigid in what we do to help our clients as some home helps are.
“We tend to work within a five mile radius from our base in Lovers Lane as there are lots of people who need help in that area.”
The company also helps source tradesmen for older clients.
Mr Fagan said: “We only ever use tradesmen that we have used before and who we know as we want to help those who have no one else to turn to.”
The company also says it is looking to pass on some of its success by supporting a small local charity.
For more information, contact houseproudcleaning@ btinternet.com or visit www.houseproudhomeservices.co.uk