“A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all.”
~ Michael LeBoeuf
Testimonials & Success Stories
“As the owner of a small consultancy, I wasn’t sure whether I would need – or could justify – using the services of a business coach. However, working with Amanda has been one of the best decisions I have made for the progression of HK Communications. From providing accountability to helping ‘unblock’ sticking points, Amanda’s support over the last few months has been invaluable in spurring me on to greater things. Amanda’s services don’t lie in providing answers or solutions, but in guiding me towards what I feel is the best option. From tackling my business plan, to working on specific projects, Amanda has been a great support. I therefore wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her services to a small business who wants to dream big.”HALIMA KHATUN
“Amanda brings calm to my stormy days, and clarity to my hazy ones! She helps prolong the short 24 hours of every day. With her help, the swamp of running a new business almost single-handedly suddenly becomes navigable and conquerable. Thank you, Amanda, for being such a wise guiding light!”NADINE WINKLER
“Amanda’s coaching gave me the chance to sort through the multiple ideas I have in my brain and develop a logical order to them. I discovered that I usually already had a sense of what I wanted to do but it was hidden amongst the chaos, and needed to be pulled out and demystified. After working with Amanda I was able to find the way to bring these ideas to action.”BRYONY FARMER
“Amanda helped me to identify the most important activities needed to reach my goals. As a small business owner, time and money is of great importance and needs to be spent wisely. Working with Amanda and identifying my next steps will save me both.”HAZEL M
“Amanda helped me gain perspective on current issues – reminding me where I had come from, and what I was originally trying to achieve. It gave me more confidence about what my priorities should be. It also made me realise that sometimes we avoid addressing difficult business issues, and I now feel able to discuss those with the other directors.”JANE W
Success story one – managing priorities
Lucy* came to me with an interesting coaching assignment. She wanted me to wave a magic wand and find her more time!
I quickly established that she was a very dynamic, driven and highly-creative woman. She had an excellent grasp of business issues, having previously run a successful consultancy in a completely different field. However, her biggest asset – and her biggest challenge – was that she was constantly coming up with new ideas. Thanks to her business acumen and prodigious creativity she stretched herself too thinly; trying to have a finger in dozens of pies all at the same time.
What we did
We started by identifying what Lucy really meant by “find more time”. I asked her what she would do with any time she carved out. She has young children, so I might have assumed she wanted to improve her work/life balance. As a coach, it’s important to avoid making assumptions; and on this occasion, my assumption would have been wrong! It became clear that Lucy and her partner carefully guarded their family time. It was the rest of Lucy’s time that was a mess! She wanted more time to exploit the 101 opportunities that she could see for her business.
I worked with Lucy to identify every aspect of her business that demanded attention.
First, we looked at the categories of activity in her business – customer service, marketing, finance, staff management etc.
Then we drilled down into the types of activity under each heading. We captured this in a big mind map, so that Lucy had an ‘at a glance’ picture of all her business activity.
I then asked Lucy to identify the two categories of activity where her personal involvement was critical.
I expressed this as, “if you could only dedicate personal time to two activities, what would they be?” Her response was instant and instinctive. She knew exactly where she added most value – but saying it out loud gave her a real lightbulb moment.
During our next few sessions, we kept coming back to this theme. We explored how Lucy could reduce the time she spent on other activities, so that she could maximise her time where results were best delivered. Sometimes, this meant saying no to opportunities that were likely to be too time-consuming, with no guarantee of a good return. Sometimes, she could identify a colleague who could participate in her place. Sometimes, we agreed that it was right for her to get involved because it played to her strengths and would help drive the business forward.
Over time, our coaching interactions became less frenetic. Lucy brought a sense of greater order and control that was missing when we first met.
Lucy will always be driven and dynamic. It’s in her DNA, what makes her unique and what gives her an aura of high energy and buzz. However, she now has a better sense of how to harness these characteristics to make best use of them. Our coaching sessions are now aimed at maintaining this balance; helping Lucy to prioritise her time and activity so she gets the best results for her business whilst feeling grounded and calm.
* Client names have been changed to preserve confidentiality
Success story two – robust business growth
Bella* has been running her business for three years. In that time it’s gone from being a business run from her bedroom to a small but highly successful business. Though already selling products worldwide via her online store, Bella came to me for guidance in how to grow the business more significantly. She had a clear financial target in mind.
What we did
We started by brainstorming all the different ways that Bella could grow her business. We looked at expanding her product range, moving into retail and increasing her advertising. However, I could see that something was niggling her; stopping her from fully engaging in the discussion.
When I dug a little deeper, it emerged that Bella had some concerns over the quality of her current product range. It was only natural for her to be nervous about growing her business until she had resolved her concerns.
Our focus then switched to the steps she needed to take to address the quality issue. I invited her to explore this with me. We looked at what she wanted from her product. It became clear that to have confidence in the production process, she needed to be able to oversee it from start to finish. For Bella, this meant bringing production to the UK. By the end of our initial coaching session, Bella knew what she needed to do, and had committed to the first steps she needed to take.
During our subsequent sessions, I supported Bella as she identified alternative manufacturers, checked credentials, commissioned samples, tweaked designs and reviewed further samples. Finally, she took delivery of the finished article – a day for celebration.
Our initial coaching sessions didn’t immediately help Bella to achieve the financial targets she had identified as her goals. However, they performed an even more important role. They helped her both articulate and address an underlying concern that she had not been able to identify on her own. Without addressing that concern, leaping ahead to grow the business would have been a bad move. She is now building from a much more secure foundation, and is excited about the opportunities that this provides.
* Client names have been changed to preserve confidentiality