Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Do things that scare you….

I recently was invited to speak to a small group of banking professionals at a North Shore Credit Union Conference. From the moment I received the call from their Human Resources Manager I was filled with terror and excitement….I had yet to present anything on my business and the thought of all those eyes on me was enough to make me want to barf.

I went to meet with the AVP and Human Resources Manager of the Bank and had a wonderful chat about what I do and my personal service mantra, I can do this, I thought. Having no guidance on how to go about putting together a presentation on me and MLM, I turned to Google. I spent hours riffling through the online tips of how to keep an audience engaged until I felt I had a enough ideas. The countdown was on and all I wanted was the whole thing to be over…I was terrified. Two days before the big presentation I attended a crazy/musical/therapeutic hot yoga class taught by the very infamous Will Blunderfield. He speaks during the entire class and reminds you that it’s ok to fail and it’s part of learning and that you have to do things that make you uncomfortable in order to grow. Talk about good timing, I was ready…kind of. So the morning came and I was on my way to the conference, the thought of crashing my car just enough to be delayed without being hurt did cross my mind. So I did the presentation and it went better than I could have imagined, so much so that they invited me back to speak to a different group.

The moral of this story is that it is so important to push yourself into things that make you uncomfortable but that you know you will only grow and become a stronger person than you were before.

If anyone needs a speaker to talk about personalized service give me call!

Ashley Dempsey

Food Costs on the Rise

Just as we are getting used to the HST we are hit with another nasty price increase, and I’m not talking just about fuel. I’m talking about the one thing that all humans and other species) need to survive…..FOOD!

It seems a cruel joke that as we try to improve our lifestyles and eat in a way that will keep are bodies healthy longer, the cost of a healthy lifestyle keeps rising. A family of five that I shop for on a weekly basis spent $2000 last month on food, with 75% of all items being Organic. Why is this backwards?? Should we not be rewarded for making healthy choices? Are we not a blessing to our health care system? Shouldn’t our government be taking care of those who are not a financial burden on the system? The answer to all of these questions are ‘Obviously’!

I want my clients to feel a benefit from having me do their weekly shopping, and not just in terms of having more time. I want them to be confident in my financial choices. So today I made the choice to start at Superstore (I was pleasantly surprised by the selection of non-yellow ‘No Name’ items) and it ended up saving my clients a good amount of money. It is a big difference going from Whole Foods to Superstore but the with the Farmers markets season upon us, I think making these small adjustments will help my clients bottom line. Try to see past the fact you have to bag your own groceries, you’ll get used to it, and save yourself some money!

The money saved should go towards a new pair of summer sandals, this is my professional opinion.

Ashley Dempsey

Please people, start delegating.

I am starting to realize that the large obsticle standing in the way of most women being able to delegate, is ego and impatience. First of all, we couldn’t imagine anyone being able to manage our lives better than we can (which is true most of the time). And we don’t have the patience to explain and teach another person how to do these errands that way we want them done. But here’s the thing, when our plates start to overload and our relationships suffer with the ones we love, our health and life quality will start to deteriorate…..and this causes serious line ups in our hospitals and clinics. So please people, start delegating!

When you finally decide you want the extra help in your domestic life and contact your local Personal Concierge, there will be some minor growing pains. It will take a few weeks for your Concierge to become familiar with the likes and dislikes of you and your family but when your Concierge can start thinking for you, you will start to feel the sanity of your amazing decision.

Start today, contact me and let’s take a look at your never ending to-do list and find out what I can get completed today.

Pricesmart vs Queensdale

As a professional shopper I spend a large portion of my week in grocery stores on the North Shore and Downtown. I definitely have my favorites. My store choices are based on the following; Client preference, busyness, store vibe, parking (underground is a major bonus being in Vancouver) and of course the quality of service offered by the employees of these stores.

I do have to say that although the parking is less than attractive and the price are at times astronomical, Whole Foods at Park Royal is favorite. The store layout is easy to navigate through, the store is well maintained and pleasure to visit. The staff are very friendly and I Love the soap they supply in their washrooms.

I’m actually wanting to make a very important point about customer service. I recently started shopping at Queensdale market, a request from a client, which is a competitor of Whole foods. 85% of my visits there have been an absolute disappointment, besides the helpful man in the meat department. I have had a rotation of cashiers, who have made me feel as though I was inconveniencing their day by shopping at their location.

Now on the other end of the spectrum, I have built an actual relationship with a cashier at Pricesmart Foods on Marine Drive. I visit the store every week and get the VIP treatment every time I visit, who wouldn’t love that?! Because of this service I will remain loyal to Pricesmart for as long as possible.

So I say to Queensdale, If you want to be a successful organic market, step up your game! You’re loosing right now.

Ashley Dempsey

The Importance of Communication

In an era where most people prefer to communicate by text message, facebook and e-mail, many of our important messages are lost in translation. In a business such as mine, commununication is one of the important keys to success.  When a client passes along a task it is my job to fully understand the request and complete it to their standard. In the early stages of my first client relationship I was so concerned with being a nuisance that I would take an educated guess on what the request was. This, as I quickly found, was very embarrassing and costly. As I carry on learning I know that asking those questions are so important and not a total inconvenience to most level headed individuals.

With those learning curves comes taking responsibility. As we all know, there is nothing more disconcerning than someone making a mistake and trying to blame everything around them. Unfortunately this is frequent in both the business world as in our personal lives. Taking responsibilty and being honest relates directly to strong communication which I think will make you successfull in all aspects of life.

So always remember to get all the information and be honest when it comes to making lifes little errors…..we all do it!

Ashley Dempsey

Thank you Telus

I often get asked what made me decide to start a Personal Concierge business and how I came up with the blue print this new type of service. I then recount the Telus phone call that changed my life.

I have always considered myself a patient person and one that is calm when faced with frusterating events. I had a problem with my Telus internet bill (again) and had to make that dreadful call, the one that could imprison me for 5 to 30 minutes. Unfortunatley for me it was the latter. As I twirled my hair patiently and thought of all the other things I could have been doing with my time it just came to me. People would probably pay someone to do this! And so was born my new life venture. I spent hours researching and brainstorming ideas and markets. Since this was an entirely new industry there wasn’t any guidelines which made it harder, but  because of that I could mold it to be exactly what I wanted. Personal Concierge firms are starting to pop up all over the lower mainland and I think that the industry will be far more prominent in the coming years. Even with the competition becoming larger I think that all firms are different and offer a specific style of service. For example, some companies prefer to act as a broker for all the services they provide , myself on the other hand, focus on being the face of my business and provide most of the services myself.

So that is the story of Modern Life Management’s birth,I hope she lives a very long and healthy life!

Ashley Dempsey

New Mommy

I am now reaching that age where all of my friends are shacking up, getting hitched, and creating tiny, cuter versions of themselves. This brings me to Squid (nickname of course),one of my oldest friends, who is now 5 months pregnant. Being service-minded I immediately start to think of all the inconveniences of motherhood and what services one could offer to ease this inevitable burden/gift.

Seeing as I do not have children nor do I fully comprehend the life change, I look to my friends and clients to enlighten me. So Mommys, tell me what you need?

I am putting together the ultimate Mommy Concierge Package, one that rivals all on the market. What is the one thing new Mommys need above all else? SLEEP. Sleep while I shop, arrange cleaners, provide laundry service, manage doctor’s appointments, picks up diapers and other emergency items, answer the door and filter all the unwanted visitors (M-I-Ls included). I am also wanting to offer the Baby Shower Package, this will be for those who celebrate after the magic happens, and would include managing your friends and your great aunts peacefully, creating the invites, planning the games, managing the caterers, compiling the thank you list and the dealing with the cleanup. Since I am in the drafting stages I really look forward to your expert input.

All ideas welcome!

Ashley Dempsey

Pain vs Pleasure

I recentely took part in a discussion with 11 other female entrepreneurs about the challenges we face in our respective fields. During the discussion the theory of Pain vs Pleasure came about, at what point does a human being have so much pain that they are forced to make changes (if at all)?

That’s when I realized that being a entreprneur and a personal concierge, a VERY new mainstream industry, was going to take a lot of patience. The clients that I imagined when beginging this venture were successful career women that were balancing family and a thriving career, I thought these women would be banging down my door begging for my services, but there not. These women are savvy money savers, multi-tasker extrodinaires and brilliant parents. But are they exhausted and nearing their critical leverage? Yes! This is were the theory comes into play, how many baseball games are you going to miss? How many nights are you sleeping by midnight and up at 6am? When does the pain get so bad you have to reach out and look for more pleasure? Well that is different for everyone but I vow to be there waiting when you do. Please don’t be too long, I would like to continue helping families.

Yours waiting patiently,

Ashley Dempsey

A quick look at Mrs. Beeton

For those of you who have not heard of Mrs. Beeton, she was a woman living in the 1800’s who made a important mark in history. She published a ‘How-to’ guide on being a flawless housewife.

Here are some of the few recommendations that she makes in order to maintain a perfect household:

1. AS WITH THE COMMANDER OF AN ARMY, The mistress of the house must put all duties above her own needs and keep her husband and children happy. This means abandonning ‘proper pleasures’ and amusing recreation.

2. EARLY RISING IS ONE OF THE MOST ESSENTIAL QUALITIES. When a mistress is an early riser, it is almost certain that her house will be orderly. If this is not the case it is almost certain her children will become lazy individuals.

3. ON THE IMPORTANT SUBJECT OF FASHION AND DRESS. Basically this rule states that no matter how convenient, comfortable or becoming, you must never go against the current fashion.

As we all know, this is not modern life (Thankfully!). Today women are still expected to run the household and now, have a role in brining in a portion of the family income. During the 1800’s, although demanding, the mistress of the house had a lot of help. Each middle-class home had a housekeeper, the housekeeper would help with accounting, cleaning, shopping and would live in the home to help with any day-to-day duties.

Now, how are modern day women supposed to run a flawless household and have a career? Meet your modern day mistress/housekeeper, also refered to as a Personal Concierge. The Personal Concierge can take on your endless to-do list and allow the modern women, in the words of Mrs. Beeton, ‘proper pleasures’ and ‘amusing recreation’.

With Personal Concierge companies appearing all over the world, there must be a very good reason they exsist. Wives, mothers, daughters, and CEO’s can all benefit from more time, you can’t argue that! I guarentee once you gain that first hour you will be on the road to stress free living, well….at least a lot less of it.

Thank you to Mrs. Beeton for sharing your thoughts on being a perfect housewife.

Ashley Dempsey

Women in the Workforce- ‘The family/work balance’

Since 2001 B.C.’s economy has generated over 381,000 new jobs, half of which are filled by women. With so many women choosing full time jobs over staying at home, the challenge to do it all is proving to be impossible.

Having to defend their choice is another struggle that many women are dealing with, the pressure of doing it all; being a good mom, protecting their kids, guiding and teaching them through their impressionable years. Until now women have used such services as nannies and house cleaners but the growing trend of having a Personal Concierge is proving to provide working mom’s with all the help they need. Many women find themselves overwhelmed with their to-do list which weighs heavy and creates unnecessary stress. Although the list seems endless having a Personal Concierge take over your list one day a week can forever change your life and help you and your family achieve balance.

More than 34% of small businesses in B.C. are owned and operated by women this creates even more challenges with balancing family life. How many of you take your work home? On top of having to manage a household many women are managing a business. There is a solution, follow these steps and start living the life you deserve.

-The first step to creating balance is to LOSE THE GUILT!

-The second step is to accept that help is needed and it is not
possible to be all things to everyone.

-The final step is to contact a local Personal Concierge and start getting the help you need!

-Ashley Dempsey