The opportunity: Dave is a highly skilled tradesman
who can put his hand to almost anything: plumbing, extensions, decorating,
carpentry etc. but he has no experience of building a business beyond what
he himself can achieve in a 45 hour week. He knows there is a substantial
demand for additional services but has no capacity and is nervous about
taking on employees.
The mentor: George is a retired landscape gardener
who had also owned a small chain of garden centres. He faced the same issues
as Dave some years ago when he went from being a sole trader to establishing
six stores over a twelve year period. Now that he's retired he finds himself
almost busier than before but this tends to be in non-remunerative community
activities and interests. He misses the "buzz" of business and is seeking a
low-risk low-commitment opportunity.
The dynamic: George is familiar with all aspects of being an
employer and has plenty of experience to assist Dave. They spend just a few hours
together each week and after six months, having consulted with the Board of Advisors, George decided to invest in new equipment in
order for Dave to add a texture coating
service. It was a natural progression. Dave had already been spending a lot
of time on exterior decorating and repairs but had insufficient funds for
the cost of either the equipment or the training required.
George advised Dave on various aspects including marketing,
how to "open and close" clients and to oversee a team of workers. Within 18
months Dave divided his time 50/50 hands-on/management and was now running two additional
teams of decorators. He trebled his income and George, who had invested
£15k for a 20% stake had gained equity and bolstered his annual pension by £12k.
This may not sound like much for a millionaire, but it paid his daughters
Uni fees and gave him interest & satisfaction!
integrity, accountability, generosity and mutuality in a nutshell.