Necessity is the mother of invention

Necessity is the mother of invention

Born out of necessity. – The necessity to earn money to support a new family by utilising the only truly transferable skill I had.

It was 1992; after more than a decade of operational duties, I had left my life as a Senior Royal Marine Commando 2 years prior and was working as an internal leadership coach for a large motor dealer group in the UK. I had lots of front-line operational leadership experience working in highly hostile “competitive” environments but little business experience. That was all about to change.

My leadership coaching had a direct positive effect on the business’s performance, so much so that my boss, after several very experienced senior people had failed, decided I was to take direct responsibility for the turnaround of a multi £m division of the business. Time to step up, stop talking, and start doing.

Operational duties have taught me; a more complex environment demands more Leadership, not less. If a void in Leadership exists, it is likely to be filled, not necessarily with the type of Leadership you require. My approach then, as it is to this day, is to fill the gaps by encouraging leaders at all levels to lead with transparency, conviction and credibility.

Over the coming years, I was to lead businesses across several industries and sectors, from £1m to £150m and personally grow a business through acquisition from £15m to £150m; I led the purchase of 10 companies across 20 locations, and the divestment of several companies. I helped banks reduce their financial exposure and stabilise distressed businesses, and in that time, I raised some £35m of investment on the public markets and £20m from private investors.

Fast forward to 2014, positioned as one of Yorkshire Business Insider’s power 100 and a Fellow of the Institute of the Motor Industry. I received a call from the CEO of a private equity firm asking if I would provide some flexible strategic support for their businesses. It turns out I am pretty good at it.

I undertake 1-2 interim roles per year and work as a Coach or Advisor with up to four clients at any time.

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