Alan is one of the company’s Associate Senior Business Advisors working on the Boost programme, and is an experienced business consultant specialising in developing strategies for SME business growth, with particular expertise in strategic planning, change management and process improvement.
He has over 20 years of senior management experience up to director level of a leading UK building materials manufacturer. He started his career in the Royal Navy before completing a degree in engineering and a MBA.
A client recently said to him that; “setting up and owning your own business should come with a Government health warning.” Many SME business owners will empathise with this sentiment, as creating and maintaining a successful business is hard work and often involves sacrificing time – time that could be spent enjoying the rewards that should come with being a business owner.
Over the last year Alan has held a Business Support Review meeting with over 90 business owners. Key points he has noted from the experience are:
- All but a few were trading profitably and were successful.
- Most of the issues presenting a barrier to future growth were common, whatever the nature of the business.
- Very few business owners spent time planning for growth.
- More than 90% had never previously sought external advice.
Alan says: “I have gained a great deal of satisfaction from being able to offer support through Boost and other partners.” He further adds: “often the relief expressed by the owner during review meetings is very tangible. It is often the case it is the first time they’ve talked to somebody about their issues, and it is a privilege to be able to offer solutions to these issues.”
That Government health warning may never be issued, but seeking advice can go some way to maintaining the health of both SME businesses, and their owners.