Our Business Support Spotlight series highlights the wealth of support listed on Boost’s Support Hub and available to Lancashire businesses. Today’s spotlight shines on Boost’s Growth Mentoring Programme.
Firstly, by listening. We take time to speak with the business owners and leaders, to learn about their goals and aspirations, and their fears. Until you understand what makes ‘someone tick’ and identify their business's ‘north star’, you are unable to deliver mentoring support that’s tailored to them, their business and the people who work in it. By investing this time from the outset, helps ensure the mentoring support delivers the required results.
Research has shown that 70% of small businesses that receive mentoring survive for five years or more, which is double the rate compared with non-mentored entrepreneurs. (Source: Federation of Small Businesses)
These are just some of the positive impacts mentoring can deliver. But on a pragmatic level, it’s because owning a business can be stressful, frustrating and a times lonely. Hearing first-hand from a mentor about their previous mistakes and successes is invaluable, as is having a trusted outside perspective.
All our mentors are experienced, successful businesspeople and by sharing their experiences can have a measurable impact on helping business owners achieve their goals.
Simply, by doing what we have always done; listening, understanding, challenging, using effective communication, being impartial. The unimaginable business disruption caused by the pandemic has caused businesses to question what they do and why they do it. By accessing our mentoring service, it has provided businesses with a safe sounding board during uncertain times.
Never more than now is it relevant to have an outside perspective, someone to challenge and question the status-quo; suggest new methods and strategies, question the viability of customers and markets served, the use of technology (or the lack there of).
We are providing business owners and leaders with space to think and breath, after all the pandemic has affected all areas of our lives, not just business, we provide the ability to step back and take an objective view.
Not surprisingly, one of the biggest impacts for Lancashire businesses remains the need for remote working practices and the need to safeguard the health and wellbeing of it’s greatest assets, its staff.
Many employees have faced challenging situations at home including home-schooling, caring responsibilities and a return to a full office working model in the future may not be feasible, due to employee expectations.
The need for businesses to make significant changes to survive and / or thrive or die. Many have already planned to restructure to ensure their cost base is consistent with their revenues and unfortunately, this will result with job losses. Sectors that are expected to be badly affected include travel, for business and leisure, commercial property sales, events, venues, and hotels.
Indications are that local economies will benefit from people buying local – local trade, local producers, manufacturers, with less reliance on international supply chains. The main sectors that are expected to gain from the crisis include, local leisure, travel, retail and distribution, digital and online commerce and entertainment, health, and mental health (especially online and remote).
But there’s one thing for sure, Lancastrians will continue to face any challenges head on. We are a county of hard-working, innovative, resilient, fearless people, after all, this is where the industrial revolution started and I know by working together, harnessing the support available, we will overcome the obstacles we face together.
Jaydee Davis, programme director, Boost Growth Mentoring (Community and Business Partners).
Pictured above is mentor Paul Bury with Jonathan Cundliffe from J700 Group, who received mentoring support through Boost's Growth Mentoring Programme.