Rachel Charlupsky founded The BabySitting Company
If you are looking for low cost business ideas or business ideas to start at home, it may be helpful to study other entrepreneurs who have already succeeded with their own start up on a shoestring budget.
Starting a small business can be very expensive, no question about it. Some of the best business ideas are those that you can start small, with very little initial capitol, and grow or scale up to a larger business as you build your customer base .
This is exactly what Rachel Charlupski did in 2005 while a student at Arizona State University. Rachel enjoyed babysitting and was looking for ways to make extra money. She became a “certified” babysitter and began approaching some of the upscale hotels in the Phoenix area offering professional babysitting services to the hotel & their guests. She also made it clear that she was certified, and was available on short notices even if it was the middle of the night.
It was not long before Rachel was receiving as much as 20 calls a week for her services. It quickly became evident that she could not handle all of the work and had to hire someone to help her.
Ten years later and Rachel Charlupski is being hailed as a “solopreneur” for building her business to $1 million in revenue without any employees (the babysitters are considered subcontractors.)
Now based in Miami Florida, Rachel has built a business that covers 13 cities such as New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, New York and even London - with a network of over 1500 babysitters. She has grown her business by providing top notch service to her clients, most of who could be described as affluent. One of the ways she did this is by being available 24/7. This sometimes means putting in 15 – 20 hour work days to cover all the bases. But like many solopreneurs she does get some help in running the business (such as marketing) through outside contractors.
Essentially Rachel took babysitting to a whole new level. Her babysitters go through a full FBI background check, drug testing, CPR training, and about 25 hours of training in total before being allowed to work with clients. She also takes great care in matching their professional babysitters to families by use of extensive questionnaires. In addition, there are written company policies and procedures the babysitters abide by.
Rachel’s company – The BabySitting Company - provide sitters for virtually any special occasion that exist; hotel & resort babysitting, traveling sitters, overnight sitters, corporate, convention, special events, and the list goes on.
Many of Rachel’s clients are repeat customers who travel or return to the same cities on vacation or business, such as Miami. And yes her clients include celebrities, professional athletes, and even a supermodel or two.
On her business philosophy - Rachel puts all the emphasis on the relationship with her clients and babysitters ensuring both are happy. “The relationship is so much more important than the dollar” she states.
In realizing her business start up success, Rachel really did not invent anything new. She took a service that has been around for at least a hundred years, refined it, scaled it up and built a large client base.