Lisa Brick is very organized. The Edmontonian spent 20 years doing administrative work at various companies and rose eventually to executive assistant.

“At first it was just a job and a way to support my family, but it became something I enjoyed doing,” says Brick, who’s now 44.

She had a diploma in administration, then went back to school to study business. “That was when I started thinking about maybe opening my own business.”

Six years ago, a friend told her about a personal assistant service in New York. The company would pick up people’s dry cleaning and buy their groceries.

“This is exactly what I do for my boss,” thought Brick. She looked around and found similar companies in Canada, but none in Edmonton.

In September 2005, she launched VIP Concierge & Errand Service with her daughter, Sarah Conant, a recent theatre production graduate, as her only employee.

Within a week, they had their first client. Soon they were house sitting, finding plumbers, buying birthday gifts, getting oil changes and booking travel for an ever-growing list of well-to-do clients.

Brick soon had to hire more staff: Today she has four full-time staff (she calls them concierges) and 10 part timers. Conant now runs the event planning division of the company and has two staff helping her.

To build the company, Brick and Conant constantly network. Through their contacts, they get great deals on oil changes, nab hard-to-find sports and theatre tickets, secure last-minute dinner reservations to and get the best travel prices.

Brick still runs the business out of her home. Her day starts with scheduling: She looks over the requests from clients and organizes who will do what and when, and makes sure all the instructions are complete.

She then sometimes heads out the door — like many of her staff members — to hit the mall, the grocery store or the auto repair shop. But more often she spends time on the phone doing research for the company’s top clients to find them everything from contractors to nannies.

It’s a job that requires organizational skills and the ability to multitask. And while you’d think it’d be a drag to spend your days visiting the vet and picking up flowers, both Brick and her staff love it.

They’re talking to people all day, often get to pick up high-end products they wouldn’t normally buy for themselves, and are never stuck in an office.

“Running my own errands, I hate it, because I never feel I have enough time,” says Brick. “But I like doing it for other people.”