Norwich Business Mentor

When you think about working with a business mentor or coach, the challenge is finding someone you can relate to, someone you feel comfortable talking to about your business, your ideas and decisions, and the thinking behind them. Let me tell you about myself to help you decide if that person could be me.

I began working as a Business Adviser in 1999. Very few women were in the business support industry at the time, and most of the advisors (as we were then known) were middle-aged men in grey suits; I seemed to stand out in what became my trademark black suit, black boots, and red lipstick.

I have broad experience in a wide range of sectors and at different stages of growth. I have considerable experience working with business start-ups and those at an early stage of development.

I was involved in delivering School Enterprise Education projects for several years, something I remain passionate about. In recent years, I have met with young people I worked with as young students who tell me that they still remember many of the things they learnt during the enterprise programmes and that they have used those skills many times to help find employment and in their working life. When the opportunities arise, I work with our local High School as a volunteer mentor during Enterprise Days.

Coach or mentor, what’s the difference? The difference is subtle; however, I prefer to be known as a business mentor; here’s why. A couple of years ago, I thought long and hard about how to provide the best value to people running small businesses. What did business owners need from me? What did I do that was useful to them?

I read through some of the feedback I had received over the years and read reviews that clients had written; most of the time, they needed someone to discuss their ideas with, to help structure their thought processes and give them the confidence to put plans into action. Strategic planning, advice and guidance are part of the mix, along with introductions to other professionals in my network when specific services are required.

I’ve always been a good listener and being a business mentor is very much about listening. My clients open to me, which is great because when I understand the basis of their decision making, I am in a better place to guide them. This is what mentoring is all about, it’s working much more holistically with a client to understand them and the challenges they face fully.

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