Initiative wins an Award



If you can’t find the manager you need for your business, grow your own. That’s what Michael Folkes did, and his initiative has landed him a major industry award.

Michael, owner of the Caremark franchise in Cheltenham and Tewkesbury, has been honoured in The Great British Franchise Awards 2022 after helping his partner Jo become the manager they couldn’t recruit.

“A good Care Manager can make or break a business,” says Michael, who started his business in 2017. “By the time we received our CQC registration and had been trading for three months, I wasn’t impressed with the quality of management I was getting.

“Jo and I decided the best way forward was to work out what we needed and do it ourselves. 

“How hard can it be, we thought! Our third child, Edward, was six months old at the time, so we arranged childcare and Jo joined the business as our Care Manager. 

“Jo’s a qualified physiotherapist so has experience and knowledge of healthcare, and with my management and business experience we make a great team. 

“We had sleepless nights and a care business to deal with but, remembering my own advice, I recalled the power of attitude and we both kept each other going. 

“Over the past three years we’ve grown the business and established a brilliant senior team, most of whom have been promoted and developed from within. 

“Jo now works two days a week in the business supporting our new Care Manager, who’s doing an amazing job, and Jo’s been able to return to the NHS three days a week to work as a physio.” 

The couple have taken on a second franchise territory in the area and now employ more than 50 people.

“The CQC inspector commented that we operate as a much larger business than we are,” says Michael.

“We have a great working relationship with our local authority as well as qualifying to provide a wide range of services for them which will allow us to diversify into new areas of care.”

The Great British Franchisee Awards recognise franchisees’ exceptional performance and business experience, ability to drive business growth, staff retention, customer satisfaction, community involvement, inspired leadership, and franchise involvement.

The awards are run by whichfranchise, supported by Lloyds Bank, BDO, AMO Consulting and Chantry Group.