Why is thinking time important?

Posted by on Sep 14, 2017 in Blog, Featured | 0 comments

Why is thinking time important?

Thinking time is essential. Some seriously successful people in the business world say they wouldn’t be where they are without it. Yet in talking to other business owners, ‘taking time to think’ is something we rarely do. Something else is always far more vital to our business. In just the last week, I can count three conversations where a fellow business owner’s response has been ‘I’m just too busy’. When I thought about it, they aren’t unusual. This has been a common approach amongst many people I have spoken to, and corresponded with, over the years. I can put my hand up and say I’m guilty of this too. This prompted me to do some more thinking about thinking. Is thinking time really that important? I could only conclude thinking time is essential. Yes, we’re busier than ever, but I’d really like to persuade you that, from now on, perhaps the response should really be ‘how do I make that thinking time happen?’.   Top CEO’s value time to think Consider Warren Buffett, head of the fourth largest public company in the world. You would expect him to be ‘too busy’. However, he famously values thinking time. His reason? To enable him to make the best decisions. I insist on a lot of time being spent, almost every day, to just sit and think…I do more reading and thinking, and make less impulse decisions, than most people in business. – Warren Buffet, CEO, Berkshire Hathaway CEO of LinkedIn, Jeff Weiner, allegedly schedules two hours of uninterrupted thinking time every day. Read or listen to what Weiner says about the importance of carving out time. Does it resonate with you? Oftentimes, people get caught up in the day to day flow, and if challenges are coming at them fast and furious, there’s going to be a natural tendency to solve one problem after another, and it’s important to take some time. ‘Time’ is the key part…Part of the key to time management is carving out time to think as opposed to constantly reacting. And during that thinking time you’re not only thinking strategically, thinking proactively, thinking longer term, but you’re literally thinking about what is urgent versus what is important, and trying to strike that right balance. – Jeff Weiner, CEO, LinkedIn There are others, too. Bill Gates purportedly takes two weeks out every year to think. AOL CEO, Tim Armstrong, encourages his staff to make 10% of their time ‘thinking time’. That’s 4 hours out of their working week. This [thinking time] has been a total game changer for me and for AOL. The companies that take this seriously will have a major strategic advantage in the years to come. – Tim Armstrong, CEO, AOL   Is thinking time important enough for you? Weiner’s conclusions particularly mirror so many of the conversations I have with fellow business owners. The day to day running of your business throws one thing after another at you. You deal with things as they come in,...

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Chard group’s vital strategy for new business centre

Posted by on Sep 5, 2017 in Clients, Featured | 0 comments

Chard group’s vital strategy for new business centre

Imagine this. In three days’ time, you will deliver a marketing strategy that benefits not only your small business, but your local town too. You’ll play an integral role in the project and the ripple effect in your community could be felt for years to come. Let me add that at this point you’ve probably never heard of the project you’re going to be working on, or the other local small businesses you’ll team up with, before. You’ll work with strangers, not knowing what expertise and skills they bring. Despite this, you will sign off on a project that will have a big impact. Sound too far-fetched? Maybe you feel your marketing knowledge and skills aren’t quite up to scratch? Perhaps you haven’t enough time to work on such a project? However, this is exactly what five people representing four small businesses local to Chard in Somerset did. Over three days of workshops, Lynda at The Business Greenhouse mixed marketing training and coaching, enabling the five business owners to learn new marketing skills, exchange expertise and knowledge, and to devise a marketing strategy for the launch of Chard’s new business centre. The marketing understanding and skills they developed were instantly actionable in their own small businesses. The programme we devised was supported and funded by South Somerset District Council.   What did South Somerset District Council think? After a successful tendering process Lynda worked with us to develop our marketing strategy which was great and very competently done. But there was much more to it! We recruited four local business to work with us in exchange for marketing training. Lynda devised and led the whole process working with the businesses to inform and develop the Hub’s marketing strategy, creating an exciting and we think unique business led offer. At the same time she helped the four businesses to develop their own individual marketing. I’ve run my own businesses in the past and if I do it again I’ll be using Lynda.” – Dylan Martlew, Neighbourhood Officer (West), South Somerset District Council Want to know more? Read on…. How did it all start? From the outset, South Somerset District Council’s Area West Development team and The Business Greenhouse were on the same page. The vision for the council’s new business centre in Chard incorporated a hub of energy, momentum and exchange of innovative ideas and support led by local small business owners and entrepreneurs. The Business Greenhouse had, in working with Bristol Business School, produced a business-led model that would support the development of groups of organisations based in business centres and communities.   The challenges for the new business centre As a new concept for the Chard area, there also were several challenges facing the business centre project: Collation of evidence proving demand was ongoing The business centre was still in concept stage News of the planned business centre was not yet widespread or common knowledge The business centre’s operational model was still in development They needed to identify and actively engage...

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Join Thrive in Bridgwater!

Posted by on Aug 15, 2017 in Blog, Featured | 0 comments

Join Thrive in Bridgwater!

Let me introduce you to ‘Thrive’, a new business development group from The Business Greenhouse.  The concept has been developed in response to feedback gathered from small business owners. Thrive’s aim is to deliver the type of support they would really value, yet isn’t easily available for this size of business. After much cultivation, I’m utterly delighted that it’s time to launch the first ‘Thrive’ group. As the town in which The Business Greenhouse is based, I’ve chosen Bridgwater, Somerset, in which to open the inaugural group. Intrigued? Read on for more information… A dynamic new business development group in Bridgwater Are you ready for your business to benefit from the energy and momentum anticipated by other organisations in and around Bridgwater? This new Thrive group aims to flip business support on its head. You won’t find a prescribed series of talks telling you what you should be doing in your business. Nor stacks of reading material. Times are challenging and uncertain. Here at The Business Greenhouse we believe there is a need to think, and do things, differently and better. In the company of like-minded small business owners and leaders, the aim of this group is to encourage a micro-culture amongst you of entrepreneurial mindset. Collaboration, learning and innovation will enable you to realise your business ambitions. Providing a collective solution-generating, impetus-giving, sounding board, the group is invested in you and your business’ success. We envisage the advantage and future opportunities for your business as you profit from shared skills, know-how, resources and the benefit of hindsight. Being part of the group will mean a ‘time and effort investment’ from you, too. Other participants will expect and value your input and support. You will also remain responsible for the development of your own business in real-time. You’ll be accountable to the group as well – for their investment in you and your business, they’ll want to see you make progress! However, with the group’s support, you will unlock confidence, capability and capacity that enables you to make things happen for your business.   Who’s the group for? This initial Thrive group is for businesses based in and around Bridgwater in the Sedgemoor District of Somerset. Our intention is that you will benefit whether you’re an owner-manager, have one or a handful of employees, or are tipping the balance into becoming a medium enterprise. Typically, you might describe your business as a micro or small enterprise.  If your business is larger than this, and you feel that you would benefit from being a member of the group or contributing, please let us know. The wider the sector representation, and the larger the breadth of experience, the better we anticipate the opportunity for cross-fertilisation of ideas.   How do I know this group will work? This dynamic business development model has been developed as a result of the work The Business Greenhouse has done with Bristol Business School and the Faculty of Business and Law at the University of the West of England...

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