A few of our Mentors…

Our Mentors are either recently retired or currently established business people with a unique blend of business and life experience. They benefit from having ‘been there and done that’ and they are willing and keen to share their skills, knowledge and networks with other existing businesses on a voluntary basis.

When you request a Mentor we take time to try and find the right match of skills, experience and personality. This may mean a delay before you are introduced to a suitable person, but we find it is important to ensure we get the right ‘fit’ so that you and the Mentor have an effective working relationship from day one.

Chas Morrison

Chas Morrison has been assisting businesses to improve since leaving corporate life in 1990.

With experience in all aspects of management, Chas always aims to find a personalised solution for each client, based on their business needs, their level of expertise, their specialist knowledge and any other relevant factors.

Chas worked as a Business Link Advisor in Hampshire, Dorset, Sussex and the Isle of Wight before taking on the role of manager of a team of 14 advisors in Hampshire in 2004.

Following changes in the delivery of Business Link services, Chas was invited to manage the Mentor-Net service from 2010 to 2011, during which time some 12 new mentors came on board and client numbers doubled.

Chas has worked with people coming from long term unemployment into self-employment, with University students starting their own businesses, with SME owners unsure about the way forward, and has worked with over 2,000 businesses in total.

Among his memorable clients Chas has worked with a 14-year-old girl (assisted by her mother) making dolls at home, a business which she sold to an international company, and three students who started an operation to offer clients reduced energy and phone costs . . . again, a successful sale resulted.

Equally comfortable in a Board Room or with a home-based mobile hairdresser, Chas always seeks to offer an honest appraisal, whether that is the same as the client’s opinion or not.

Chas is happy to assist any type of business to address its issues, firstly getting to understand the business and the operation and then analysing and addressing its needs.

Ben Heath

Ben currently owns his own restaurants and helps many others with theirs through his restaurant consultancy.  He is a columnist for a national restaurant magazine and a restaurant reviewer for a local newspaper.

 

What are your strengths and field of expertise?
My strengths are working with businesses in the food sector, I am a restaurant and café consultant, working with restaurateurs up and down the country to open new restaurants and troubleshoot existing ones that are struggling.

 

What can a mentee expect from you when you first meet?
I pride myself on being extremely approachable and supportive and I believe I am great at motivating people to believe in themselves and their ideas.  I get huge satisfaction from helping people achieve their goals.

 

What other skills do you bring to the role of mentor?
I have a great all-round knowledge of business and what makes a business successful, the food industry is where my main expertise is, but I have owned many businesses from security businesses to businesses in the events industry.

Tony Corbin

What are your strengths and field of expertise?
Key Strengths relate to Business Development, Marketing and Project/Programme Management.  As a former small business owner (now retired) I feel I also have a good grounding in all business functions, not least of which are ensuring a positive cash-flow and good client relations/account management. I also have a good understanding of IT from a dozen or more years working in the IT arena.

 

What can a mentee expect from you when you first meet?
First and foremost a good listening ear, respect for trying to go it alone – it’s not easy, plus a good helping of common sense applied to maximise results and minimise risks. I always try to challenge thinking and test ideas with the aim to support the mentee through the implementation of an agreed plan of action.

 

What other skills do you bring to the role of mentor?
Good communication skills, patience, structure, experience, plus plenty of learnings to share.

 

Which mentoring job do you remember well? And for what (positive) reasons?
I enjoyed those where I managed to inject some self-belief and see clear progress being made. I also remember the more difficult assignments that have led to reworking the business model and, in a couple of cases, the realisation that the business idea is not sustainable.

Jay Wood

What are your strengths and field of expertise?
My strengths and background are in the field of Customer Service.

What can a mentee expect from you when you first meet?
I will want to understand the business, identify their customer, and get to know them as a person.

What other skills do you bring to the role of mentor?
I’m a good listener and motivator and I enjoy the challenge of resolving problems/issues.

Which mentoring job do you remember well? And for what (positive) reasons?
I remember the last one. I really enjoyed it because my mentee had very little business acumen in the beginning, but now the business is doing well.

Adam Smith

What are your strengths and field of expertise?
I have experience across a diverse range of business types, sectors, functions & geographies, CRM, Go-to-Market, Sales Growth. 

What can a mentee expect from you when you first meet?
I will have lots of questions about them and their business and I am keen to identify key issues or challenges that need to be addressed 

What other skills do you bring to the role of mentor?
I have worked internationally, including living overseas, and I have experience starting and running my own business. 

Which mentoring job do you remember well? And for what (positive) reasons?
Mentoring employees going through significant and unexpected change to head office relocation (from London to Amsterdam). I enjoyed it because I helped people find a new sense of purpose and roles (some within the company, others outside).

Here are some comments from our clients:

“So far, David has proved invaluable and I’m really looking forward to working with him in the future. Mentor-net, in my opinion, is possibly the best form of support service I have received since starting my company.”

Dr John Crute, The Technology Academy

“The best thing Business Link did was tell us about Mentor-net. Have a fantastic mentor and things are moving in a newer, bigger and more exciting direction.”

MB, New Forest

“….we’ve had the initial meeting with our Mentor and we got on with him really well and spent two hours going over a lot of stuff! He’s agreed to meet us again on the back of us getting some more information over to him and then we’ll go from there.

I think he’s a great guy and helped focus my mind and my business partner’s.”

GV, Waterlooville

“I found working with my mentor incredibly useful. I had lots of ideas but was finding it hard to put them into practice. Having someone to sit down and work with me individually, to share successes and knock-backs with, and who was interested and supportive has made a tremendous difference.

As a result of working with my mentor, I developed systems for marketing and budgeting that really work for me and my business. Not only do I feel more in control of my business but I have seen tangible business results. I highly recommend it.”

Charlotte Baker, Undine Coaching, www.undinecoaching.com

Watch here to find out more about how a Mentor helps businesses:

Why you need a mentor

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