For Ray White Whitsunday owners, Mark and Belinda Beale, it is hard to believe 10 years has gone by since they bought the franchise.
Ray White Whitsunday came of age, reaching the decade milestone this week.
Mark, Belinda and the team couldn’t be more proud of what they have achieved.
It was 2006 when Mark and Belinda bought Ray White Whitsunday and since then they have helped to grow the business dramatically.
Belinda said when they first took over the franchise they only had six staff where now they have 34.
“We’ve had to expand dramatically especially with our premises, moving from a very small, old location, to the Whitsunday Shopping Centre and when that wasn’t big enough, we had to take on our premises here (at Reef Plaza),” she said.
“I think that’s a good reflection of our achievements – in both our premises’ growth and our staff growth.”
Passionate about giving back to the community that supports them so strongly, Mark and Belinda involve themselves and Ray White Whitsunday in a number of sponsorships and charity events.
“Last year we raised the highest amount of money for Relay for Life (in the Whitsundays),” Belinda said.
The team are currently involved in the Winter Appeal, where they will donate second-hand winter clothing given by the community to the Whitsunday Crisis and Counselling Service.
Despite having plenty of highs, Ray White has also experienced plenty of lows and the Beale’s have been confronted with a number of tough obstacles.
“In 2008 when the GFC (Global Financial Crisis) hit, it was certainly very hard but we believed in ourselves and knew that we could do it – and our staff stood by us and we worked very, very hard,” Belinda said.
For Mark, the GFC showed just how passionate everyone was about their job.
“We didn’t have to put anybody off but we trimmed excess stuff that we were spending, which probably everybody was,” he said.
“Everyone had to make cut backs on certain things and just work harder.”
Chairman of the Ray White Group, Brian White, said he was impressed with what the business had achieved in its 10 years.
“We are very proud of the business that Mark and Belinda have built in such a beautiful part of the world,” he said.
“There is a great understanding of the appeal of property in this region to the broad Australian market and it is wonderful to receive testimonials from people who have been so pleased to have used Ray White Whitsunday as their selling agents.”
Mark noted that in the past few years, technology had changed drastically to improve customer service.
“(This) is basically through our rental department, with making bookings and following up with stuff like inspections and reporting to owners,” he said.
“It’s really improved and in the end that makes happy staff and happy customers.”
Mark Brimble OA said Mark and Belinda made their business an extension of their
family and built a business with real values.
“Throughout the past 10 years I have seen Mark and Belinda grow into an extraordinary couple both as proud parents of three children and excellent business partners,” he said.
“Their combined force in the community of the Whitsundays has been achieved not only by what their business has done but also the time and effort they have put back into the community.”
Married for almost 14 years, Mark and Belinda said despite the responsibilities of running the business, family always came first.
“While we work in the same business, if we’re working in the same office, we’d probably kill each other,” Mark joked.
Belinda said when they got home, they focused their attention on their children and each other.
“We talk about what’s happening with the kids and what’s happening in our own lives,” she said.
“We don’t bring work home and I think that’s very important and it’s definitely a key to success.”
SOURCE: WHITSUNDAY TIMES