What is a business advisor?
Being a business advisor is all about helping you to get the right strategy to build a successful company and supporting you to put that strategy into action. I often say that I help small business owners to make more money and have more fun while they’re doing it.
I’ve been running different companies since I was 24. That’s 27 years of solid business experience. I’ve run social enterprises, technology companies, and a training company. You can find out more about my background and experience here.
I’ve been running the Joy of Business since I moved to Brighton in 2001. I became a (mostly) online business advisor 5 years ago, and now most of my work is with clients over Zoom.
What can a business advisor do for your company?
A good business advisor will look at your business and work out with you what the best way forward is. Sometimes this is how to maximise the profits, other times this is how to grow the business to sell it in a few years time. And sometimes it’s to work out how to balance making the kind of income you want with the lifestyle you want to have or the kind of work you want to do.
A great small business advisor will also be able to support you in how to make those changes. As well as being really clear on the strategy, the goals and the way forward, a great business advisor will help you with all the areas you need to be able to get into action to develop your business in the way you want.
This might be helping you to get to grips with the latest in online marketing, supporting you with developing your sales skills or how to build your pipeline.
Your business strategy needs to be backed up by you being able to use the right tactics as well.
The best business advisor will also be able to help you with the emotional parts of running a business
You need someone who is completely on your side, believes in you and has the emotional intelligence and communication skills to support you, to be there for when things go well, and when you’re experiencing those challenges that running a small business can bring.
It helps that I’ve been there before and experienced the highs and lows of running several fast-growing small businesses myself, so I can really empathise with what my clients are going through.
I only work with companies where I truly believe that the business has the potential to grow and develop. And that starts with a coffee and a chat first, where we can work out if I’m the right business advisor to help you.
My style as a small business advisor
I’m not the right business advisor for everyone. I am known for my plain speaking, no bullshit approach. I see my role as to challenge your thinking, and to push you that little bit further when I need to.
Some people need more gentle handling and a more life coaching approach, and some people just want a sounding board for their own ideas – In these cases, I probably wouldn’t the right person for that.
I get very excited and ambitious for my clients. Often, because I’m not in the business every day, I can see the potential of a company more clearly than the owner. My clients often say that they love coming to our sessions because they go away filled with enthusiasm and ideas for what they’re going to do next.
I’m very focused on helping my clients to make good money. In fact, I’ve written Sweetspot Pricing, about how to boost your profits by getting your pricing right and marketing your business to get people to buy at the price you need to charge.
I’m very comfortable talking about finance and take a pride in being able to talk about the technical side of finance and business in a way that my clients can easily understand.
In fact, one of the best compliments I ever got from a client was someone who said: “You’re pretty strange, Julia, because you get finance and marketing, both at the same time.” I didn’t realise at the time that this was unusual, but she was right.
What kind of companies do I work with?
I specialise in working with companies with less than 30 employees, where the owner wants to grow the business. I love working across different sectors because I get to learn all about tofu manufacturing or adventure holidays.
I find that it helps that I don’t know everything about a particular sector because my client already knows tons about what they do. My role is to share and apply my knowledge of how to make money from that kind of business model.
I do a lot of work with software and technology companies, probably because I spent time working in tech, and I love the potential of these kinds of business.
How does it work?
Working with me as your online business advisor
We meet up online (unless you’re in Brighton) twice a month to work out how we’re going to make your business grow and develop. And then we continue meeting so I can be there to support you in implementing that strategy and tweaking it along the way.
That’s where all the clever tactics come in. I’m also available between meetings by phone and by email, so you can get advice on any tricky situations that come up along the way.
There’s no minimum contract, but most of my clients stay with me for 6 – 12 months.
Your online business advisor in the Remarkable Business programme
Some people prefer to work with me as part of my group programme Remarkable Business. Partly because it’s more cost effective for them, and partly because they get me as their online business advisor, plus regular workshops and the support of a group of other business owners with similar aims. To be honest, this is the option I would pick unless I had some very intense challenges I needed to work through one to one.
What would I get out of working with you as my business advisor?
Clients say they feel more confident about running their businesses. And that their business moves forward faster with my help. I’ve worked with hundreds of different companies, and see it as my job to keep up to date with current trends, so I know what works and what doesn’t. Clients feel happier when we agree on a clear strategy, and this means that they can get into action on their business without worrying about whether they’re doing the right thing or not.
We’ll definitely focus on making your business more profitable. But we’ll also look at how we can make it more efficient. Which of course often means that it’s more profitable as well.
We’ll increase efficiency by cutting out the things you don’t need to do and concentrating on the actions which will make a real difference. And even in the smallest business, you can make massive steps forward by adding easy automation to your processes, bringing in modern best practices, or using the right software for the job.
The results my clients get
Clients often come to me because they want some support in getting more customers and bringing in more business. Supporting people in getting their marketing right is a big part of my work, and this is the most obvious early indicator that things have changed.
1.7 Million turnover
Here are Miranda and Nick talking about how business coaching worked for them
How can we work together?
You can come to me for one to one business advice [link to cornerstone] and we’ll meet twice a month to help you move your business forward.
Or you can join my Remarkable Business programme, which gives you 6 months of support from me and a group of other business owners, with fortnightly online workshops to learn the key skills for growing a successful business.
We can arrange a coffee and chat, and I can advise you which one of these options would be best for your particular circumstances.
If that feels too early for you and you’re just looking around at the moment, that’s fine. You can get my regular email tips on growing a business, right here, and we can stay in touch.