Emma Hand - Aromacare

emma-hand-300x225Aromacare is run by Emma Hand and is located in Bray. Emma offers a wide range of massage treatments and takes the holistic approach to treating a person. Each treatment is tailored specifically towards the client’s needs. Aromacare offers treatments such as Swedish massage, Reflexology, Aromatherapy, Hot Stone massage, Indian Head massage, Pregnancy massage, Deep tissue massage and Facial pamper packages using hand made organic cleansers, toners, moisturisers, scrubs and masks.

What led you to starting your business? I always loved health and wellbeing. 9 years ago I studied Swedish massage and Reflexology in Galway after which I worked in Spirit One Spa in the Radisson for 2 years. I love exercise and sport and have always had an interest in anatomy and physiology. This led me to further my studies in UCD where I went on to complete a degree in Physiotherapy. I believe in the holistic approach to treating a person which takes into account a person’s whole being including the physical symptoms, psychology, environment and nutrition and the effects, positive and negative, that these can have on the body as a whole. Starting my own business gave me the ideal opportunity to incorporate everything I’ve learnt over the years into my practice and spend my life working in a field which I love. I am a trainee counsellor/psychotherapist and hope to eventually also incorporate this into my business.

How did you raise the start-up funds you needed? Before starting my business I was unemployed for a year during which time I did a Start Your Own Business course with the Enterprise Board. When I started my business I was entitled to Back to Work Enterprise Allowance from the Department of Social Protection and some grants to help me purchase goods and services to help me start up the business.

What was the most significant lesson you learned in starting your business? Look after your clients and the business will look after itself.

What’s the best book you’ve ever read, business or non-business? I hate to say it, but business bores me to death. I didn’t even buy the business book in school in Transition Year when we had a compulsory module in it. I pretended to forget it every day!  I love reading philosophy or psychology books. They are much more inspirational!

Who is the entrepreneur you admire the most? Rachel Lee. She’s a yoga teacher who works in various different venues throughout Wicklow including the Navara Centre. She loves yoga and has decided to spend her life teaching it. You only live once and I admire people who decide to spend their lives doing something they are passionate about.

What have been the biggest challenges in your business to date? I’m not very patient when it comes to the technical side of the business and I hate maths, so the accounts, website construction and maintenance etc. would be areas I avoid like the plague. I know lots of entrepreneurs do these things themselves, but I decided to pay someone else to do them. This gives me more time to spend on the parts of the business I enjoy which are the hands-on work obviously, and the marketing.

What has been the proudest moment in your business so far? Probably the launch I held when I started the business. There was a good turn out and as a result I was fully booked up for my first week in business. This was a real high to actually see the business functioning after all the preparation time when there’s nothing tangible to be seen for your efforts.

What was the best piece of business advice you ever got? ‘Madness is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.’ Einstein. If something isn’t working, take a different approach.

Can you recommend a good time management technique for other entrepreneurs out there? I’m generally not very good at time management. If I was to say anything, I’d say try to book your clients in on the same day or part of the day so you free up blocks of time for other parts of your work or leisure!

What magazine do you never miss each month?Eisteach. It’s not a monthly magazine, it’s a quarterly journal of counselling and psychotherapy.

What is your favourite film? Hmmm, that’s a very hard one. ‘Tree of Life’ is a very beautiful film, but it’s quite heavy. I also love comedy, horror, dramas-anything highly charged or emotive I suppose.

What is your favourite ad? I haven’t watched TV in about 6 months!

What advice would you give aspiring entrepreneurs thinking of starting a business? If you love what you do, go for it! There’s nothing more enjoyable or liberating than being your own boss and being able to follow up and put into action your ideas and dreams.

What do you like to do when you’re not running your business? Is there a word limit on this one? I love the outdoors and outdoor sports, especially running, climbing, hiking, mountain biking… I’m always doing some course or other, usually in the massage or counselling/psychotherapy line. I love travelling and experiencing different cultures and meeting new people.

Have you found the self-employed formula for a work/life balance? I work to live. When I’m working I put heart and soul into it and I love my work. But life isn’t a dress rehearsal, so once I’m confident that the business is ticking over, I spend as much time as possible enjoying life!

What’s your website?http://www.aromacaremassage.ie/

Do you have a Facebook page?Facebook.com/Aromacare

Are you on Twitter? I’m not on Twitter!

How has Wicklow CEB helped you and/or your business? I did a Start Your Own Business course with Wicklow CEB which was very helpful. I arranged a one-to-one business advice meeting with a member of staff to discuss my business specifically. I also attended a seminar regarding the technical aspects of the business. I participated in the CEB Christmas Fairs in the Wicklow area which was a brilliant way of marketing my business as well as selling my products directly.

If you could start up all over again, would you do anything differently? No!

Emma can even make up a customised blend of aromatherapy products to suit individual skin conditions.

In addition to all of the personal treatments, Emma and Aromacare offer a wide range of handmade Aromatherapy body products including; cleansers, toners, moisturisers, massage oils, bath oils etc.  For more details see www.aromacaremassage.ie or contact Emma at emmahand1@gmail.com or on 087 6849235.