Welcome to the Vic's Take On podcast. I have always been known for having strongly held opinions about most things, particularly leadership and management. I am equally well known for a word which summaries everything I do - Audacious. To me, it means BOLD, INNOVATIVE, INVENTIVE and UNCONSTRAINED BY THE PAST. It is not safety first but challenging. It is not comfortable, but willing to push the boundaries. Not negative, but optimistic. So if you have come here expecting boring, bland, beige, you are in the wrong place. I am passionate about what I do, but hate buzzwords including passionate.
In this episode of Vic's Take On, I have a special guest business leader and entrepreneur, Helen Lacey.
Helen started her business, Red Berry Recruitment, in 2007 which she grew to 4 branches covering Shepton Mallett, Yeovil and Bridgwater. In 2019, she sold 51% of the business to HRGO Plc and is now the Director heading up Shepton Mallett and Yeovil for HRGO Recruitment.
In this episode, Helen talks honestly about building a business, the triumphs, the stresses the failures. She also talks about selling a large part of what she had built and the reasons behind that move, as well as the challenges the transition has created.
I have known Helen for about 7 years and have always been inspired by her drive, her tenacity, but most of all her care for her staff and customers.
In this episode of Vic's Take On, I have coach and practice growth expert to accountants Ashley Leeds as my guest.
Ashley has been in sales for nearly thirty years and in that time he has worked in a variety of industries before settling for the complex world of accountancy 13 years ago. During this period he has met and spoken with many accountants from every size of practice and has built an enviable knowledge of the inner workings of these businesses. He works with accountants to help them grow their practices with 1:1 coaching and filling with them with confidence to get those difficult jobs done, by using his vast experience.
All delivered with a sense of fun, passion and always a smile. Because of his time working with software companies he is an expert on systems and knows his way around the sales process. He has recently written the book, Pricing with Confidence with Heather Townsend and runs workshops on these subjects.
Since the beginning of the Coronavirus lockdown in the UK, Ashley has done a Facebook Live at 1:30pm where he entertains sing some amazing songs which have brought joy and happiness to many.
I have developed a very good friendship with Ashley over the past few months and have come to know him as a man of immense integrity, thoughtfulness and fun. I think you will gain a lot from Ashley's insight and thoughts.
In this episode of Vic's Take On, I have recruiting expert, entrepreneur and business leader Sarah Knight as my guest.
Sarah has worked in the recruitment industry for over 20 years and has been running her own business since 2005. Sarah personally manages Management/Senior Management and Executive level recruitment projects - the rest of the Sarah West Recruitment team manage office, sales, marketing and technical recruitment up to this level.
I have known Sarah for a few years, but have recently have developed and closer business relationship and have over this period come to see Sarah as not only a top-class businesswomen and entrepreneur, but also as a caring, fun-filled person.
We have had some great laughs over the past few months and I am sure you will see that in this chat. I have also come to recognise Sarah as a deeply thoughtful and driven person and I am sure you will learn a huge amount from this great interview.
Vic's Take On is focused on the new world of work as it is developing in a post-pandemic world. I talk with industry and subject experts, business leaders and entrepreneurs, as well as business thinkers, innovators and inventors. I also share my own opinion on many of the subjects and topics relevant to the new world of work.
In this episode of Vic's Take On, I have business leader and entrepreneur, Rachael Howourth as my expert guest. Rachael spent 17 years of her career with automotive market leader, Auto Trader Plc, where she held a number of Sales Manager and Director roles. Most recently, Rachael ran a team of 60 sales staff, achieved a revenue budget of £97million and played a significant role during the year Auto Trader went through IPO and became a Plc.
Rachael now uses her skills and experience to train businesses on Sales Strategy, Consultative Selling, Building High-Performance Teams and Sales Pipeline Success.
I have known Rachael for about 6 years and have recently spent every weekday morning co-hosting the Empowerment Group with our friend Ashley Leeds (who will be on the show in a few days time). I have grown to know and understand the business she has developed and have come to recognise her as an expert in the field of sales, management and leadership.
In this interview, we talked about Rachael's perspective on what I am calling 'The New World Of World. What new skills sales professionals will need, what are the jobs which will change and how they will change. It was a fascinating discussion and I know you will get massive value from it.
You can contact Rachael by following the links below:
Episode 15 It's Time to Fightback
This is the first episode of a series I will doing called the Fightback series. We have all felt the effects of this novel virus which has swept the world and has wreaked havoc on economies, businesses, families and individuals. It began in a Chinese market and has spread like a wildfire across the globe. To date, there is no cure and there likely will never be.
Most people are filled with a paralysing fear of this unknown and unsee enemy. They are acting in the most outrageous ways in many cases doing the very thing which, under normal circumstances, they would abhor in others. Bulk buying products in quantities which defy understanding, in the mistaken belief these things will run out. From toilet paper to pasta, with no concern for their fellow man and no consideration of, in the case of pasta, what they will add to it!
We know that life will undoubtedly be very different when this crisis ends, but we also know that it will end. And, I think, it is time to fight back. To fight back for our lives, our businesses, our futures, our families, our culture. I am NOT advocating anything illegal, but we need to regain control of our circumstances.
Please follow the government's guidance to stay at home, to work from home and to stay safe. But we can fight back and regain control of the things we can control, so in this episode, I want to share 3 things that you can do to begin the fightback.
Do not panic
Use your resources
Don't focus on what you don't have, focus on what you do have.
Please follow me on LinkedIn for more details on what I can do to help you and your business.
Until a few weeks ago, I did the vast majority of my business outside of the UK. Probably as much as 80% of my work was in countries like Oman, Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Malaysia. Obviously that meant a large amount of airline travel, in and out of airports, dealing with customs officials, living out of a suitcase and eating hotel food.
As a professional speaker, it meant standing on stages in various countries speaking with crowds from 80 to 2000 people on my core topics of Change and Change Leadership. As a trainer, it meant being in a training venue with anything from 5 to 40 delegates discussing topics from Change Management and Business Process Re-Engineering to Selling Skills and Leadership. And as a consultant, it meant sitting in the boardrooms of large, multi-nationals or in a small business owner's office, discussing strategy for change and transformation.
Well, all that has changed and while some of it may come back in the next few months, the majority of the planned work for this year is gone forever. But, as we know the same is true for most businesses in most countries around the world as we deal with this pandemic now sweeping the world. And so many people will if not already, will shortly be working from and for many people, they will be self-isolating due to symptoms of this virus.
Consequently, there is all manner of people coming out of the woodwork with advice on working from home or working remotely, many of whom have never worked from home or worked remotely, but there is now w plethora of information some very good and some not so good of how to cope with working from home.
And so, I thought in this episode, I would look at a slightly different angle rather than what is becoming the norm. So today I want to chat about Flattening the curve and 4 things you can do to help, while at the same time saving your sanity and consequently yourself.
Now I do speak from experience as I have worked from home for the best part of 30 years and have experienced most of the challenges and successes of this lifestyle which will soon become a new reality ........
Well here are 4 things you can do which will set you up fairly well and will, hopefully, prevent you from dealing with those consequences I spoke of earlier.
Be truthful with yourself, your family, your friends, your company and your clients, if you deal directly with clients.
You will need to be disciplined in a way that is very different from the disciple you apply at work. I have worked from home for a large part of my working career and know that it takes on a different level of discipline to that at the office.
Work in short, focused sessions and take regular breaks.
Remain connected. Isolation does not have to mean isolated.
To find out more about how I can help you and your company during this challenging time please email me directly firstname.lastname@example.org
In this episode, I speak with my first international guest on the podcast, Vicki O'Neill. We had a fantastic time talking about her business and the move she made from the corporate environment to being self-employed.
For me, it is an inspirational and empowering interview and I think you will gain a huge amount from the interview, so much so that I am hoping to have Vicki back on the show in a few month's time.
Vicki O’Neill is a Fractional CMO whose passion is helping small business owners and leaders achieve success through consistent, action-driven marketing strategies. Vicki started her own business, KenKay Marketing, in 2011 as a ‘side hustle’ to fulfill ad hoc marketing requests. She turned it into a full-time marketing consulting business in 2018 and helps business leaders go from 'plateau to grow' with strategic marketing specifically targeted to reach business goals. She reminds business owners and leaders to continue working their ‘why’ and leave the marketing passion to Vicki and her 20+ years of marketing and sales experience.
You can find Vicki actively posting and engaging in conversations on LinkedIn and Twitter where she shares content, videos and tips on how to create a better marketing presence.
Vicki also hosts the Connect the Dots podcast to help busy marketing and sales leaders connect the dots between marketing and other teams in the organization.
Connect with Vicki:
Subscribe to her email: www.vickioneill.com/subscribe
Today I want to talk with you about self-confidence in business, in leadership, in management and in life.
Have you ever gone to a meeting and the person running the meeting seems to easily make decisions without second-guessing themselves or there is a person who just seems to have the right answers every time?
Or you have attended a conference or a networking meeting and the person on the stage or in the front seems super comfortable in their own skin?
These and so many other people seem to have a supreme level of confidence in themselves and their abilities. They appear not to be put off by challenges or difficult questions or situations.
In fact, you will find that most good entrepreneurs and leaders are like this. They have this high level of self-confidence and on some occasions, it can appear as over-confidence.
So how can you get this thing if you can? Is self-confidence something you are born with or is it something you can develop? Is it something that is inherent in certain types of people? Are leaders naturally endowed with this ability? And is there and age at which self-confidence dies?
I think it was Denis Waitley who said, 'No one is born with self-confidence. Self-confidence is learned and earned with experience.'
So let us have this discussion.
It would be great to hear from you, so please leave a comment where you listen to this podcast and give me your feedback on this.
Episode 11 of Vic's Take On podcast and today I am with Drew Ellis who is the founder of Eyetoeye Digital & Like Minds Thought Leadership Platform.
I had a fantastic time chatting with Drew who has a fascinating background in the music and digital environments and shared so many stories that we have decided to do a second recording fairly soon.
There are number of things which stood out in this interview for me which I think every business person can learn from. These include:
The harder I work, the luckier I become
You have got to put yourself in the position for things to happen to you
Stories are important
There are high's and low's in business, both of which you need a solution for
Crafting your message specifically for your audience is critical
Collaborations are key to success
A fascinating interview which I think you will gain a massive amount from.
If you want to know more about Drew, Eyetoeye or Like Minds, please click on the links below.
We have all heard recently of the tragic death of a relatively well-known person and the viral video of a 9-year Australian boy. And most people know the circumstances which surround these things
For me, they represent a symptom of our society and have a very personal impact and so this episode is really a conversation around some of those issues and what to do if you are in that situation.
It is also a bit of a personal journey for me, so I hope you will forgive me for that, but these things need to be talked about.
Episode 9 of Vic's Take On podcast and today I am with Tom Kennard of Granted Consultancy.
This is a fascinating interview as we talk about grant funding and how it can be used by a business as a great and often overlooked form of funding. Tom's knowledge and experience are clearly evident as is his passion for the environment and what is currently happening to the planet.
Granted Consultancy focuses on a number of key areas and have developed a team of specialists in these fields.
My fascination in the discussion was around how this form of funding can enhance the business and can provide an alternative to the regular debt or equity models which most of us think about when we think of business growth.
We also spoke about the challenges businesses face and how these can be overcome and worked through.
If you want to know more about Tom or what Granted Consultancy, please click on the links below.
So what is mindset and can you change yours?
Mindset is a mental attitude that determines how you interpret and respond to situations you encounter. It is the preconceived ideas you have for the potential outcome in any given situation or set of actions. So, for example, if the government increases the tax rate on business, some people will see it as a disaster, while other people will see it as an opportunity to operate leaner and meaner. These differing viewpoints are due to conditioning and preconceptions, and that is due to a mindset.
Another definition of mindset is a lens or frame through which the mind orientates us toward a particular set of circumstances, associations and expectations.
You may have heard people say this person has a positive mindset or that person has a negative mindset. If you look at the results of their actions and the effect they have on those around them, you see a clear correlation to their way of thinking or mindset and the outcomes they achieve.
Over the past 30 years or so a huge amount of research has been done regarding mindset, the mind, thoughts, etc with Professor Carol Dweck at the forefront of some of that research. Much of the research shows that generally in terms of ability, skill, product, service, etc, there is often very little difference between one entrepreneur, business person and another. The big differentiation between the massively successful entrepreneur and those who are not, between the great employee and the not so great employee, is mindset.
The attitude toward everything which determines actions and results.
Do forget to follow us on LinkedIn using the link below:
Vic's Take On LinkedIn Page
Karen is the owner and Managing Director of Exeter Gin and is a passionate advocate for the city of Exeter. She also owns Exeter Street Food, which is an award-winning events company.
Exeter Gin has 2 distinct, trade-marked brands and in this interview, I talk with Karen about her journey to this point. We chat through the process she went through to become self-employed as well as how the passion for the city developed.
It is a fascinating story and journey, which has many lessons business leaders can learn from. It was one of those interviews which could have lasted all day and yet not scratched the surface. It is a story of learning, of tenacity and of courage and you will benefit from listening to this episode.
If you want to know more about Karen or would like to contact her, the link to her LinkedIn profile and Exeter Gin are below.
This interview with Joanne Manville was so much fun to do because I learned so much about the role of a VA (virtual assistant for the uninformed) and we laughed a fair amount.
It was also interesting from the perspective of someone who has started their own business and works collaboratively with other self-employed people to achieve a common goal.
So jo is obviously a self-employed VA who has been in the business of supporting senior executives for the past few years and has extensive experience in that environment prior to becoming self-employed.
The key things that stood out for me in this interview were the 3 areas core reasons businessmen and women should make use of a VA:
Outsource first the things you don't like doing
Outsource the things you are not very good at
Outsource the things you don't have time for
Great advice and likely advice I need to listen to!
You can find out more about Jo and her business from the links below.
As a change leadership consultant, speaker and trainer, I often hear M.D's, CEO's Directors, Business Owners and managers talking about the need for change in their organisation or business.
And I have been witness to the aftermath of fairly disastrous change management efforts, particularly those facilitated by some highly paid experts. And of course, we have all heard the big stories of companies that have failed to implement the changes needed to survive their disrupted environment.
From the famous stories around Blockbuster Video to Nokia, from Kodak to Pierpoint Langley's attempts at building a flyable aircraft. Or we could talk about Yahoo or Blackberry. If you are in the UK, you could add names like Woolworths, Maplin and Toys 'R Us.
And to be fair, the list would be extensive, but these companies and many others around the world have on the face of it got to a point because they have either failed to implement change fast enough or they have failed to see the changes that needed to be made.
And of course, we are all aware, we live in a world which never stands still. A world that is disruptive, unpredictable, complex and accelerated.
So you need a different mindset if you are to be successful in your change process. And in this podcast, I outline 10 things you can do to develop a mindset for change.
Please leave a comment on our LinkedIn page and let us know how we can help you. This link to that page is below.
Episode 4 of the Vic's Take On podcast and in this episode I share some ideas from my personal experience of the value inherent in continual training and education for leaders and in particular for change leaders.
Training is the practice of developing skills and education is the practice of acquiring knowledge and as a leader, you need both.
You can become educated on any subject by, for example, the books you read and there are thousands of really excellent books on the market which contain nuggets of information that can transform your experience as a leader.
Books like Leaders Eat Last (Simon Sinek), Rebel Ideas (Matthew Syed) or Team of Teams (Stanley McCrystal). There is also my own book, Audacious Leadership.
But training to is important as it should take that knowledge and transform it into workable skills. and training can come in the form of classroom training, coaching or mentoring.
So in this episode, I share a story from my military career which gave me an invaluable perspective in this regard.
I look forward to your feedback on this episode, so drop me a message on the LinkedIn page. The link is below.
Episode 3 of Vic's Take On and I am chatting with my good friend Daryl Fulls, managing director of Scribble & Ink based in Newton Abbott.
Daryl, who is well known for his choice of bright shirt, spent 28 years building up a family shoe business, before leaving and starting Scribble & Ink in 2013. He is, in my view, the epitome of the phrase, 'what you see, is what you get.' A guy with huge integrity and honestly, who loves life and laughter.
On the show, we talk about the different ways in which people use language in leadership and what certain terms mean for his business. We talk about mission and values, about vision, strengths and weaknesses.
Daryl has some incredibly interesting ideas around leadership and change which I found really captivating to chat through and I am sure you will gain some valuable ideas from this podcast.
We had a great time doing this interview and I look forward to hearing your feedback.
If you want to know more about Daryl, please follow the links below.
Scribble & Ink
Episode 2 of Vic's Take On and we talk change leadership with Recruitment firm owner Tom Murphy.
Tom is the founder and director of Aptus Personnel in Melbourne Australia, although hie currently lives in Exeter to be near to his 2 boys.
In this open and frank discussion, Tom shares some of the very personal challenges he has faced as a business owner. He goes into some detail of his experience in leading change in his business at various times of the business's existence.
There is an authenticity about the things Tom talks about and in places you will hear the rawness of the truth of his story.
We had a great time doing this interview and I look forward to hearing your feedback.
If you want to know more about Tom, please follow the links below.
Episode 1 of Vic's Take On and we talk all things networking with John Harvey - Super Connector.
John is the founder and owner of the Samphire Club, an invitation-only membership club focused on offering business owners and valuable networking opportunities.
John shared a bit about his work background before we got into chatting about networking from his unique perspective.
He never had designs on going into business for himself, but circumstances changed and almost by default he fell into the thing he had been doing naturally for many years. Networking.
It is obvious for the chat with John that he is passionate about what he is doing and the way in which he does it. John's system is not for everyone, but I think as you listen to this podcast, it will very quickly become clear that he has some great ideas which everyone can apply to their networking immediately.
If you want to know more John and the Samphire Club, please follow the links below.
John Harvey LinkedIn