Bree Morris is the co-owner of the Dream Doors Sydney and Inner West and Northern Beaches franchises, a trusted brand specialising in kitchen renovations. Their Dream Doors kitchen facelift, which involves transforming kitchens with fabulous new finishes while saving costs by retaining some existing structures, is hugely popular. Bree and her husband Brady opened the doors of their first Dream Doors franchise in 2014 and have been awarded Australian franchise of the year for three years running.
Tell us about yourself.
My husband Brady and I co-own and operate two of the Dream Door franchises – a trusted brand specialising in kitchen renovations that originated in the United Kingdom and now has a presence in Australia, New Zealand and the United States. Brady and I were part of Dream Doors’ launch in Australia and commenced operating one of the first franchises here in June 2014. We now operate two franchises – in the City and Inner West and on the Northern Beaches. Together we make a great team. Brady is the face of the business, working with our customers and suppliers to ensure the smooth delivery of the kitchen renovation, and I look after the operational side of things. We were named the most successful Dream Doors franchise internationally – an achievement of which we’re incredibly proud. We have also just been awarded Australian franchise of the year for the third year running. Work aside, we have a two-year-old child and a baby on the way!
What did you do prior to becoming a Dream Doors franchisee?
Previously I worked in business management in the area of property investment. Brady has always worked in sales. The change was originally driven by Brady being unhappy in his job, and we were looking for new opportunities. We stumbled across Dream Doors at the Sydney Franchising Expo by chance, and when we started talking with them about the business, we knew almost immediately that this business was a great fit for us. Buying a franchise meant joining a larger group, whilst also having the flexibility of operating our own business. Neither of us had previously worked in the industry, but we had renovated several properties together.
What are the various services you offer?
The main service we provide is the kitchen facelift. This involves retaining the structure of the kitchen, and replacing the existing surfaces, such as cupboard doors and hinges, drawers, handles, benchtops and splashbacks, with polished new ones. We often also make modifications to the layout of the kitchen at the same time – for instance, a customer might wish to add a pantry, change a cupboard into drawers or relocate an appliance.
What can customers expect from your service?
Our customers can expect a high level of personalised service. We look after everything for our customers from beginning to end – so we’ll come out to your home, look at your kitchen, and discuss what you want to achieve. Then everything is custom made to suit your kitchen. It usually takes only one to four days for installation, so customers are not without a kitchen for long at all. We have highly experienced, qualified installers and will coordinate all the trades required to complete the job, such as plumbers, electricians and tilers.
What do your customers say about your service?
Our customers are always impressed with the difference that a Dream Doors facelift creates. They have often spent less money by retaining parts of the old structures and feel they have been delivered a brand-new, high-quality kitchen. We just love seeing the huge smile on our customers’ faces when show them their new kitchen.
Best piece of advice you can offer mums wishing to transform their career?
When you’re starting out with a new business there can be lots of challenges but it’s so rewarding when it works. You also have to be realistic about whether you actually have what it takes to set up and run a new business. There’s a common misconception that working for yourself gives you flexibility. However, when you’re starting out there can be very long hours involved. It has to be something that you are truly willing to dedicate yourself to. Also, if you’re considering working with your partner that can present its own set of challenges, and for some it’s simply not achievable. Thankfully my husband Brady and work well together, partly I think because we have such distinct skill sets.
Have you ever read a book that has changed your perspective or path in life?
Recently I listened to an audio book called Useful Belief by Chris Helder. It’s all about self-awareness and explores simple, practical ways of approaching the challenges you might encounter in your personal and professional life.
As a mother yourself, what is the best piece of advice you have received?
As a mum one of the best pieces of advice I’ve received is that no two days are the same. So if you’re having a bad day today, do not assume that tomorrow will be bad. We all have challenging times but don’t forget that things can and do change. This attitude has helped me too in our business.
Do you have any favourite family traditions?
In our family, Sunday is a special day. We call it ‘family funday’ and we love getting out together for some enjoyable experiences. We’ll usually grab breaky out somewhere and then move onto a park, beach, play centre or the zoo.
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