THEY both started their careers as cleaners for an East Lothian firm.
But Michelle Lamb and Nicola Barbour made such an impression over the years that they received promotion after promotion.
Now the pair have been appointed as joint managing directors for Spotless, a cleaning agency based in Musselburgh, handling portfolios worth around £6 million each.
They also now share responsibility for more than 1,400 staff across seven offices after their boss spotted their potential.
Spotless chief executive Roger Green said: “Both Michelle and Nicola joined Spotless as cleaners as at the time they needed flexible part-time work to fit round their family commitments.
“They threw themselves into their roles and I quickly recognised that they had a real aptitude for managing people.
“I promoted them to more and more senior roles within the company to encourage them to develop their skills and fulfil their full potential. They have worked their way up to the most senior management positions, learning the business from the ground up.
“They have both worked with me for a considerable length of time.” Michelle, 49, from Edinburgh has been with the company for 22 years and Nicola, 46 and originally from Aberdeen, for eight years.
Mr Green added: “They bring an immense amount of experience to their respective roles and have been key to helping grow the business. I am confident that they will continue to drive the future growth we are aiming for and I am delighted to have the opportunity to promote them to this joint leadership position in recognition of their commitment to the company.”
Mr Green set up Spotless Commercial Cleaning in 1988 while studying at the University of Edinburgh. He has grown the company to have an annual turnover of £12 million.
He believes its success lies in the happiness of the company’s cleaning staff and managers.
He said: “I empower my staff by recognising good performance and encouraging them to grow and develop.
“The level of service Spotless delivers to its customers depends largely on the level of dedication of our managers and Nicola and Michelle are both outstanding examples of this.”