Name: Deborah BarnettAge: 39 Company: Essential Escapes. We specialise in luxury spa, fitness and detox holidays worldwide. Turnover: £3m First job: Saturday girl at a local jeans shop in Brighton aged 13 (yes, I lied about my age). It was my first experience in sales and I loved it. I had to do everything else though including hoovering and making the tea, which took me away from the sales floor making it harder to reach target. But I got my commission almost every week (and spent it all on jeans!). Dream job: Diving instructor in Barbados. Car: Vauxhall Zafira for my children and their dozens of friends. Economy, business or first class: If you’re offering to pay, I’ll fly first-class, please. Otherwise, it’s economy. Most extravagant purchase: My house. Most-played song on your iPod: “Tiny Dancer” by Elton John. Best business book: Anyone Can Do It: Building Coffee Republic From Our Kitchen Table by Sahar and Bobby Hashemi. Worst business moment: My on-going war with Barclays Merchant Services. Proudest business moment: Closing our best year ever last year in the midst of an economic crisis. Your business mentor: My brilliant late father, Bernard Barnett. Next big thing: I guess there’ll come a time when shops don’t exist and everything is bought online. My husband will be delighted.
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