Are you looking for more from your business (more profit, more time, a greater exit value)?
Are you looking for sustained change (for the better), not just a flash in the pan?
Life in your shoes could feel lonely, with no clear plan of how to take the business forward, with no one to bounce ideas off, no one to explore safely the consequences of a big decision with, no one with whom you can share learnings from other companies or other sectors.
We should talk.
For over 15 years I have been providing insight, challenge, support, structure and accountability to small business owners just like you. It makes my day to see people like you living their dream. I go to work to help more people get what they want from their life – simply, sustainably and successfully.
Shall we talk?
To help owners and their businesses on this journey I offer several things:
One-to-one coaching to review strategy, devise a plan or maintain accountability on the journey;
Coaching and training rising managers or developing management teams, particularly to allow owner-managers to step back; and
Engaging and entertaining public speaking on the subject of business, strategy and customer service (my “Business Lessons from Abba” talk is a sure-fire hit).
Why don’t we talk?
James Butler Business Coaching
I began my working life as an Environmental Scientist, becoming an expert in waste management, especially in the field of packaging recycling. I was headhunted by Biffa to run their business unit Biffpack – from start up to a turnover in the millions. I learnt a lot about sales, stakeholder management, corporate life and staying awake whilst traversing the motorways of the UK.
But I got bored, and I found something else that floated my boat – coaching others to find success – so in 2002 I gave up a successful career and started out as a sole trader. Since then I have grown a coaching business with a team of coaches across the UK, exited it and now am back as a sole trader, closer to my customers and enjoying the work of helping clients.
I have written several books on business development, delivered programmes at Cranfield School of Management and Cass Business School for owner-managers, and worked thousands of hours, with hundreds of clients, in dozens of sectors. My smallest client has a turnover below £50,000 and the largest has a turnover over $5 Billion.
I enjoy writing blogs, newsletters, books and articles to share my ideas. My e-newsletter has been running for 15 years and my articles have appeared in such diverse places as the BBC website, The FT, and Cosmo.
In my time working with others who run businesses, and running my own, I have come to believe that we make things more complicated than they need to be, and often drift through business life without a clear idea of where we are going or why (most importantly). I love to work with owner managers to understand just that – where they want to go, and why. It is then but a small step to develop a plan: a clear, focussed road map to success. I have seen it work time and time again, and so firmly believe that success can be simple and sustainable.
My passion is to see more people living by intention – understanding what they want from life and working out what will get them there. I live that belief in my own life: from my teenage years I have consciously made choices that fit the plan I have for life. That plan has changed many times – I no longer aspire to drinking Frascati, or have to worry about which barber to choose – but the current plan remains one that I find inspiring!
I have a clear route to retiring in my 40s, and I am almost there (almost retiring, I am well into my 40s!). I have lots to enjoy in life beyond work – my lovely wife, investing, real ale, port, my travels both globally and through Europe in my motorhome, and a whole array of things I want to learn – philosophy, French, science and history to name but a few.
I have a strong sense of community (values installed in me by my dear Mum) and am the Chairman of a local charity running a large community building, which I helped to get built. For many years I helped run a charity supporting a community in South Africa, which has raised hundreds of thousands of pounds and had a lasting impact on many lives. I continue to support the charity from outside the committee – not least by swelling takings at their annual Beer Festival!
I give time to a homelessness charity in Oxford (who do unbelievable work) and also have an interest in those wrongfully convicted or falsely accused, because a dear friend has suffered that injustice. All these community passions stem from my belief in a creating a fair and just world, and in being the change we want to see in that world.
There is a brilliant line in Fawlty Towers which always makes me smile – where Basil says “A happy customer – we should have him stuffed.” I’m not advocating taxidermy on your customers, but it is nice to acknowledge when a client is happy, especially when they are happy to say so to others! That’s …
We now have about 60 days until the end of the year so now is the perfect time to be considering what you will do to finish 2018 in strong style and make the impact you want on your world. Why does 60 days matter? Why is the end of the year important anyway? In …
Last week I had the pleasure of spending the morning with Tracey and Sarah from Thewlis Graham Associates (I have their permission to name them). In many ways, they were ideal clients – they were prepared, engaged, have an interesting business, and they brought biscuits… They added to their perfection by volunteering to provide a …