Leena Bector, Walfinch Windsor and Maidenhead franchisee, on getting hands on, bringing clients out of their shell and why she wants slow growth
Meeting with Walfinch CEO Amrit Dhaliwal, Leena Bector (pictured) understood the care franchise’s ethos right away. “Becoming a Walfinch franchisee was not just about making an investment,” she says. “I liked his approach — he prioritised care for clients and support for his franchisees, we share the same vision and there was a sense of belonging.”
Leena provides a bespoke care service with her team of 14 carers. Each of her staff is responsible for no more than two clients and she prides herself on the open conversation in her business. “I meet all of my clients often and they know that they can call me directly,” she says. “There’s no red tape or bureaucracy. We also have a WhatsApp group for clients, their next of kin, carers and me.”
This caring attitude comes from Leena’s time before Walfinch — working at Sunrise Radio, a 24-hour commercial radio station focusing on entertainment, music and news from the Indian subcontinent.
Describing her role as “a bit of everything”, she explains: “It included answering calls from listeners. Some of them were really grateful for someone to talk to when they were alone at night. They told me how much it meant to them to hear a friendly voice — so I understand how small things can be very important in enhancing the lives of the people that my team and I now care for.”
With the ageing UK population, this is a business that isn’t going anywhere soon and Leena is not trying to do too much too fast. “I would rather lose a client than provide anything less than 30-minute calls because rushed care is poor care,” she says. “We will grow slowly and steadily.”
The approach Leena and her team take with clients often fosters a close bond between them. She recalls one instance with a 100-year-old client: “One very independent client said she didn’t want carers. Now she sees her carers like daughters and wants them to be in her 100th birthday pictures.”
How did such a change of heart come about? “She could not get out without help and was getting bored,” Leena explains. “So we suggested to her family that she might like to be taken to a day centre and they agreed. Once there, she was chatting and laughing as she got involved with the activities and at the end of the day booked herself in to go again.”
It is moments like this that reinforce that Walfinch is more than just a business.