Richard Carr, Voltacompliance – May 2021

I have had the great good fortune to meet Entrepreneur in Residence Julie Kenny who is a great and friendly person. We met at Wentworth Woodhouse nr Rotherham now a National Trust property which Julie has spent masses of time (unpaid) helping to raise money to help restore it. Julie’s first suggestion for Volta Compliance was to go for a Queen’s Award for Innovation or perhaps a more local award to begin with, We talked about my next turnover target for the business and Julie said I must do more marketing in the form of networking e.g. join the IOD, Chamber etc. Julie is inspiring-the story of her company Pyronix is incredible. We will remain in touch. Thank you Connect Yorkshire for organising it.

Chris Morris, Shoo Social Media Ltd – March 2021

Our (Shoo Social Media) mentoring session with Connect Yorkshire’s Entrepreneur in Residence Jonathan Sands was stimulating, especially with Jonathan being in a similar business to ours and therefore understanding our issues. His advice was clear, get out there and shout more loudly about your successes. Be bolder, produce stories of the successes of your clients and get testimonials from them. So we are going to launch a PR campaign shouting about our clients successes following our help including on LinkedIn and other social media channels. Thank you Jonathan for an inspiring session.

Neil Frost, Bobs Business – February 2021

Coming from a government background into the commercial world as COO for Bob’s Business, I am always skeptical on the benefits of partnerships and subscriptions. I have been incredibly impressed with Connect Yorkshire as a whole, the events so far have exceeded my expectations. Further to these, I recently attended a mentoring session alongside my marketing executive Alec, with Jonathan Straight. The access to such a professional would usually come at great cost, but the team at Connect Yorkshire set this up for me with ease. Jonathan was first and foremost a very friendly, warm, and intriguing person and he spent time really listening to the pain points we have as a business. We came out of the session with some fresh ideas that Jonathan really considered and also confidence in some of the ideas we had already planned were along the right lines. Alec and I have already started work on some of these plans, as the mentoring was not just beneficial for idea creation but highly motivating to us personally. Many thanks to Connect Yorkshire and Jonathan …..very much appreciated

Simon Bodsworth, Daval Furniture – February 2021

My mentoring session with Mark Hammond was incredibly valuable as he got to know and understand our business very fast which meant we could get into the details quickly and discuss the challenges and opportunities available to us. We have a saying that ‘sometimes you can’t see the wood from the trees’ and being able to bounce off Mark who is not involved in the day-to-day side of the business allowed me to gain clarity about what I needed to do and some of which we implemented immediately. Thank you Mark.

Chris Brown, Aaztec Cubicles – February 2021

My mentoring session with Paul Rose was really useful, informative and inspirational, learning about Pauls experience’s, insight and knowledge in business along with its challenges and discussing issues and opportunities for Aaztec’s future in both its core activity and new markets. Thankyou Paul for your help and guidance and Nick for organising.

Sarah Blenkinsop, Golden Frog Public Relations Ltd – February 2021

I spoke to Simon as the second lockdown was looming and was feeling less than positive at the prospect. One of my team had been diagnosed with COVID and I was struggling to make the work add up. Something about Simon’s positivity rubbed off on me, and at the end of the zoom call I felt invigorated and ready to take on the world again. It was good to hear from a fellow entrepreneur that however established in business you are, we have all faced the same sort of challenges this year. It’s been full of uncertainty and sometimes as the Manager it’s been a very lonely place, having to make really difficult decisions and constantly keeping abreast of new regulations. The support from a mentor in this time is something that is hugely valuable. Being able to talk to someone when times are hard who understands and who gives of their own time to help others is something that is so unique to Connect Yorkshire, and the wealth of knowledge and experience that the mentors have is inspirational. I didn’t go into the session with a specific problem, but I did come out feeling the strength had returned to find my own answers.

Chris Morris, Shoo Social Media – January 2021

I met David Smalley via Zoom and had a really good session with him. We talked about our business plan for Shoo Social Media, and what he had done in his business. There was an interesting discussion around how to grow our business which focused on maintaining our niche in social media advertising and getting more efficient and better at it. As a result, we are building a process internally so our new recruits can do it as well as the founders. We have taken on 3 new employees since September 2020 so have grown despite Covid. I have been able to delegate much more to the new team; enabling me to concentrate on business development going forward. David is an inspiring leader. Thank you Connect Yorkshire for organising the session.

Tom James, Howard Conrad Group – January 2021

My session with Peter Wilkinson was really really good, I’m so glad I went ahead and did it. I was a little concerned to speak to him, because he is so successful and I’m currently ‘getting there’. Peter was really direct with me, got straight to the point all of questions that I asked. Most of the questions I asked, I already knew the answer to and I was just looking for confirmation in a way, and I got that from Peter. He also gave me some advice on the future of my business and which direction I should go in. Overall it was excellent, well worth it!

Thank you for organising it.

Amanda Ryalls, Red Button Associates – January 2021

I recently had my second mentoring session with Rachel Hannan. Once again this was a wonderfully helpful, thought provoking and productive event. Rachel has so much experience and knowledge of the world I’m working in, that the conversation is insightful and really helps me move strides forward in my thinking. I left the session with a very clear idea what I am going to focus on next and some useful criteria with which to evaluate different opportunities that might emerge, in order that I stay focussed in achieving my ambitions in business. Thank you Rachel.

Neil Geddes, N. J Geddes Fine Jewellery – Janaury 2021

My mentoring session with Mark Ward through Connect Yorkshire was very useful to gain another insight into the ever changing and challenging market of retail. Mark was able to discuss obtaining clarity on our vision, planning over a 5 year period, refining our culture and developing our market channels, which was a crucial exercise. These focus areas will assist in the continued growth of N. J Geddes Fine Jewellery as a specialist brand in our sector. Thank you to Mark and Connect Yorkshire.