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A growth conversation with...Michael Taylor

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Our latest growth conversation is with Michael Taylor. Michael is the former editor of North West Business Insider magazine and founder of Think More, a company specialising in creating thought-provoking events across the UK.

As an experienced events host, broadcaster and business journalist, Michael has presented at events and conferences all over the UK and Europe and is a frequent commentator on business issues on the BBC. He is also a non-executive director of Liberty Pensions, an honorary fellow at UCLan, and a member of the University of Manchester Alumni Advisory Board. Michael is also the chairman of business lobbying group Downtown Manchester in Business.

What is the biggest challenge you faced when growing your business and how did you overcome this?

In the last year I’ve started two businesses and joined the boards of two others. The one thing that comes up in all situations is the importance of sales. However good an idea is, if there isn’t anyone there to evangelise and sell the product or service to a customer then you will never grow.

What qualities must a growing business owner possess to be successful?

Resilience, self-belief and strong decisive leadership. The most important of these is that strength to lead people. It isn’t just about roaring from the rooftops, strength can sometimes be in silence, but there are good hard working people who remain unfulfilled because they aren’t led properly.

What top tip would you give to a business owner embarking on a growth plan?

Make work fun. I’ve yet to meet a great growing company that isn’t also fun. Have people arrive in the morning passionate and fired up. Find something that makes them click, be clear about what is expected of them and make it a good place to be.

Which entrepreneur do you admire and why?

Nationally, I have a bit of a man crush on Luke Johnson, who I enjoy reading in the Financial Times every Wednesday. He shares his personal highs and lows and speaks great sense. His book – Start Up – why starting your own business is easier than you think – is brilliant. His track record is pretty good too, but I’m staying away from Patisserie Valerie for the time being.

Locally, my brother-in-law Mark Jones is a hero of mine. He started Healthier Choice Diner in Burnley from scratch. It’s that kind of get-up and go that will make Lancashire great again. He’s now doing the food at Colne Leisure Centre. A great concept.

Why is Lancashire a great place to grow a business?

It’s a great place to live. People are proud and have great honesty. That community of like-minded entrepreneurs can really help each other to solve problems and do great things.

Why are you supporting Boost Business Lancashire?

I was part of the team that launched Growth Accelerator and I know how important it is that business comes together and in these supportive communities of local heroes.

Find out more

To find out more about Boost Business Lancashire, and to start your growth conversation complete our online form or call 0800 488 0057.

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