When I was working in pharmaceutical sales this was a favourite phrase of one of my managers, and he even went so far as to give all of the sales team a fridge magnet, with this written on, which I still have (in the garage-sorry Alex).
Back in the day this was about challenging yourself to move out of your comfort zone when selling, but now, running a small business in health and care you don’t have to look for things that scare you, it’s an everyday experience.
In my own business I have had to work through a period of Brexit confusion. When the date for leaving the EU was postponed my pipeline orders went from “I need additional consultants to cover this workload” to empty. There was a period of 6 months with no revenue, and this was before COVID, so no grants or support were available. As a consultant, when you are working with clients you are not selling your services, and conversion times can be 12-24 months, so with a full pipeline suddenly dropping to nothing, it needed a lot of work to pull in new contracts. But that’s business for you, to be honest I was really chuffed to have so much work on my books, so went from big high to major low in the space of a week.
My associates all run their own businesses, and I am lucky enough to be able to say that several of them are also friends, so I do have people (Peers) who I can talk to, and we help each other work through problems. Without some of them I don’t know how I would have got through the personal and business challenges of the last two years.
Something else this week, that really made me nervous was posting an item to BBC Radio Lincolnshire, which aired last night. Right now I am recruiting business leaders to join Lincolnshire Peer Networks (you can see my many posts about this), and I believe that right now, even when times are at their worst, and prising time out of your day for yourself and your business might seem like the last thing you can do, a bit of peer support might be just what you need.
Interestingly, when speaking to business leaders what gains the most interest is the additional one-to-one support available from me and my colleagues, supporting business growth and survival through guidance on a range of issues including how to tender for contracts, grant applications and business planning/road mapping sessions. I think as business leaders it’s always easier to focus on the business, protecting staff and revenue, before thinking about your own personal development, but I still think it’s worth saying.
“We can all get by with a little help from our friends”