21 Aug Phil Gosling: The journey – How I became a successful Arise IBO
Home Telecom Professionals is run by Phil Gosling, an Arise Independent Business (IB) based in Essex. After working as a retail manager for over twenty years, Phil certified as an Arise professional in September 2014. He currently has nine Client Service Professionals (CSPs) affiliated to his IB, servicing a variety of Arise clients, with a further 11 currently going through the certification process.
We spoke to Phil about his journey to becoming a successful Arise IB in less than 12 months.
1. How did you end up in a position where you needed to search for new work opportunities?
I started to get rheumatoid arthritis when I was working in retail and it gradually got worse. A combination of back problems and being on my feet all day meant that I reached a point physically where I had no choice but to seek an alternative source of income.
2. How did you find Arise in the first instance?
It was during my time off sick from work that I came across Arise. I was looking on the internet at a number of opportunities and quickly became conscious that a lot of work from home opportunities can be scams. The key for me was finding a reliable source that I could trust. I am a member of LinkedIn and decided to ask contacts on there if anyone knew of a genuine work from home opportunity. Someone came back and told me about Arise.
3. Why did working from home appeal to you / suit you?
The main driver was definitely my health issues as, mobility wise, another job in retail, which is the only industry I know, just wasn’t a viable option. I also liked the idea of having no commute and being able to set my own hours which was a very attractive proposition. As my arthritis is worse in the mornings, being able to work when I feel at my best is ideal.
4. Why did you decide to create your own business to partner with Arise rather than work through someone else’s? Was it an easy process?
Having been in a position of management for so many years I have gained a good understanding of how to manage other people, how to talk them in a business environment and look after them. Whilst I couldn’t re-deploy my skillset in another retail setting, I was keen to continue that management work ethic. Whilst it’s not in a face-to-face setting anymore, it’s still the same principles, just online or over the phone instead.
5. Do you miss the interaction with other people that a traditional office setting may provide?
Not at all. All my CSPs are on social media or in the virtual chat rooms so we communicate regularly, be it via video, phone or text. We can liaise with each other whenever we need or want to. As well as interacting with each other, there is also a huge support network available from Arise too – they have Customer Relationship Managers who we can contact should we need any help or assistance with the client we are servicing, plus there are weekly communications, chat rooms and online seminars that we can attend.
6. What appealed to you most about Arise over other work at home providers?
Having weeded out all the scams, I did find other genuine providers out there, however their industries didn’t appeal to me. Most of them were very sales-focused and didn’t offer enough of a challenge to keep me interested long-term.
7. How has working for Arise impacted on your life?
It has taken some of the daily stresses out of my life, which enables me to focus more of my time on the important parts of my job. The change in routine has also helped me physically, as one of the main triggers of my illness is stress.
8. Do you think you will benefit from a financial advantage from working as a Business Owner with Arise?
Absolutely. Whilst you can earn good money working on your own as a CSP, being an IB enables you to branch out and earn additional income from those who work for you. The opportunity to grow my own business really appealed to me and there really are no limits to what you can achieve.
9. If you hadn’t signed up to become an Arise IB, what do you think you would be doing now?
I think I would have had to re-train in another industry, which isn’t a very appealing prospect when you have worked hard all your life to build up a professional skillset.
10. Work@Home seems to have taken time to establish itself in the UK. Why do you think that may be?
People’s wariness of scams definitely plays a part but I think that generally the British population are very sceptical. When they see an opportunity that sounds too good to be true they usually dismiss it without actually looking into it properly. Whilst the internet is full of companies offering so-called work from home opportunities, my advice would be to do your research thoroughly and speak to people who are already in that environment. Using recommended professional networking channels is the best place to start.
11. How do you explain what you do to your friends and family? What reaction do you get?
I usually say that I work with Arise and have my own company under the umbrella of the Arise network and take incoming customer service calls. People are generally very keen to hear more and understand how it all works as they initially think it sounds too good to be true. Even my wife was wary at first until I was up and running and showed her my first invoice! However it is having these conversations with people that prove to be the turning point in encouraging them to follow suit. Most of my CSPs have come on board through talking to me and hearing about what a great opportunity it is.
12. The process of certifying with Arise is pretty thorough. What should people be prepared for?
You need to be prepared to work hard, study and fully commit to what you are doing. It’s the same as training for a normal job – you have to work hard if you want to be successful. It takes time to become fully proficient at what you do and the certification process with Arise is no different. From taking the initial CSP101, which you have seven days to complete, you can then move onto a client-specific course which can last between four and six weeks. Having done that, you can then start earning an income.
13. Homeworking, particularly in this model, may not suit everyone. What do you think is necessary to be successful?
I think it’s important to get into ‘work mode’ so to speak. Whilst you may be at home, when you sit at your desk you have to view it as your place of work. You will need a quiet environment to work in and be very self-disciplined. That said, there is a lot of support available from Arise whenever you need it so there is never a sense of being completely ‘on your own’.
14. With Arise EMEA seeking over 500 new agents in 2015 alone, what would you say to anyone else considering work from home opportunities but unsure about what to expect?
I would say ‘Come and sit next to me for a day and see how it works’. Whilst I can explain it to someone, I’m a very practical personal so am happy to show people exactly what to expect. My simple advice would be to try it – it doesn’t cost very much and you’re not going to lose money. Even if you’re currently working in a full or part time job, lots of courses run in the evenings so you can certify to become an Arise CSP in your spare time. That way, if you decide it’s not for you, you still have your current job to go back to, but I cannot see anybody doing that once they’ve tried Arise.