Growing Your Business



One thing I was never taught at university was that when I went into the workforce I would need to grow my business in order to be successful. Many people in business treat the word sales as a dirty word but I prefer to think we are building relationships rather than making a sale. If you can grow effective relationships with your clients you will grow your business naturally.


Building relationships takes time and you need a clear strategy and a structure. You should regularly do relationship building activities with your clients and candidates so they can refer you. The most effective way of doing this is to work out who is likely to refer you to your target market, then strategise the relationship building activities you will do with these people, and be sincere with them. If you don’t have a target market, you should. This will give you focus and make it easier to find clients.


The most effective activities are done in person. We often hide behind social media and emails but stronger relationships will develop if you meet with people. Always have a goal in mind when you are contacting people. You don’t want to be seen as a time waster.


An example of a relationship building activity is to take someone out to lunch to thank them for a referral. This luncheon could then turn into a meeting, and you would be amazed at the information you could get from each other. Most meetings I’ve had like this have turned into business. This is just a simple example and I have plenty more techniques to help you grow your business.


To make sure you get on track, and grow your business, call me to discuss your problems, then I can come in and coach and train your team so they grow their client base more effectively. 

Communicating your Why, Not your What

Why? Why? Why? Why? Why?

Do you ever remember your mother asking you on many occasions why you did what you did? If you were like me you likely froze and thought “I don’t know”. As a child, this word was used as a negative but if you want to build your business you need to turn this around and use this word as a positive. “Why” is such a powerful word! When you’re talking to potential clients, current clients, colleagues, anyone to do with your business, if you explain why you’re doing something, you will get their BUY IN.

I want to give you a practical example. You are a team leader and your director has just told you there’s going to be a huge change to the usual processes and  that this is going to take a long time to change. If you go to your team and just state the facts about the change, will you get their buy in? NO! If you state why the changes are happening and how it will benefit you all in the long run, you WILL get their buy in. In every aspect of life, always think of the Why, not the What.

Think about your business and think about all the things you do in your business and what you have to offer. If you go to a meeting and tell a potential client all of these things, you’re probably going to bore them. On the other hand, if you go to the meeting and tell them why you are so passionate about what you do, why you love working with people like them and why you have been so successful, you will get their buy in so much quicker.

Not only do you need to understand your why, but you need to communicate it and practice it. Practice makes perfect. Think of different scenarios and practice them as if you are speaking to your clients. Imagine the clients saying, “so what?” to help you communicate your why more effectively.

If you’re confused and don’t know what your why is then I’m here to help. I can coach or train you and your team on firstly finding out their why and then how to communicate it. Why is powerful. Use it in every aspect of your business, especially when you are trying to attract more business.

Contact me to find out more.

How to Use LinkedIn to Understand People's Behavioural Style before you meet them.


The most common question I get asked when I train and coach Behavioural Styles is, “How do I find out their Behavioural Style if I’ve never even met them before?” My answer is always the same - Social media! You’ve got so many tools with Social Media that you don’t need to do any sort of questionnaire beforehand to find out a person’s behavioural style. It’s amazing what you can pick up on their LinkedIn profile.


If you have been on my behavioural styles workshop, you’ll know that you can understand someone’s behavioural style by what they are wearing and what they are saying. If they are very smartly dressed for example, very businesslike with a very businesslike hairstyle which makes them look like they mean business, they’re probably a Director. As a result, a Director’s LinkedIn profile would be to-the-point and their language would be based around their success and achievements.


If the person has very bright makeup with fun hair and clothes, they’re probably a Socialiser. They tend to use use excitable words with loads of exclamation marks!!!! They may even sound like they’re shouting.


If the person is wearing neutral, sensible colours they are probably a Relator. They tend to be very sincere in their profile, using caring words, often showing how they relate to people.


If the person’s clothes are good quality and their hair is perfect, they may be a Thinker. They will have a very detailed profile and use a lot of words, showing their expertise in what they do. They will have a lot of information and expand on it.


You may be a bit confused by this. We are all a mixture of these 4 Behavioural Styles, and it can be difficult to know how to communicate with each person due to the intensities of the behaviour. Some people have a very high intensity of one Behavioural Style, but we all have different mixtures of all 4 behaviours.


To find out more, I can come in and train your whole team on Behavioural Styles using The Platinum Rule Assessment by Dr Tony Alessandra, or you could attend my next open workshop on 28th March. This will be my last open workshop, after that I can come in and train your team. Knowing Behavioural Styles is very powerful and helps you connect with people, whether you work with them, they are a potential client or a current client. Call me so we can discuss how I can help your team build relationships to build your business

Adapt to People to Build Relationships


Have you ever received a gift and thought, “that person doesn’t know me at all!” Imagine if you were a teetotaller and one of your best friends bought you a case of wine for your birthday, or you were allergic to milk and were given a beautiful box of chocolates. Adapting to people is one of the main ways to build a relationship. Not only when giving a gift but when you are communicating with them too. Behavioural Styles is one of the most powerful tools I have used to understand people, and how to communicate more effectively to adapt to them and build a relationship.


Dr Tony Alessandra bases his work on Behavioural Styles around his quote, “treat people the way they want to be treated.” I believe this in every aspect of my life. If I am having friends over to dinner, I think about what food they would like and what they would enjoy drinking. If a chocolate lover is coming to dinner for example, I will make one of my ‘famous’ chocolate mud cakes.


How can we use this in business? If I’m emailing someone, I think about their behavioural style and adapt the email for them. For some people, I will be more chatty and use excitable words, for others I will be more to the point, using short, sharp words. And others very detailed and explain every step. In a client meeting, some people want a long icebreaker and introduction, getting ‘warmed up’ before the questions come. Then when you are questioning them, you need to be very considerate and calm. Others want the meeting to be quick, to the point, noting the actions. Others will ask you question after question after question.


All of these quirky ways are not personal, they are their behaviour. If we adapt to people’s behaviour we will build a stronger relationship, people will remember us and we will be able to build our business because we are gaining more sales quicker.

Share Your Vision and Goals

Imagine if in 5 year’s time you have been on that amazing holiday to Mexico that you have always dreamt of? Are you somebody who has always ‘dreamt’, but your vision has never come to fruition? Do you want to go through life saying,   “If only I had done that….”


My suggestion is that you SHARE YOUR VISION AND GOALS. It sounds so easy….. In reality it can be difficult. People often say to me, “I couldn’t tell anyone about that as it will never happen.” If you say it will never happen, it WILL NEVER happen. In sharing your vision and goals, you are putting yourself out there, you are letting people know you are serious. You are committing to achieve that dream you have always wanted.


You may be asking, “Who can I share them with?” There are plenty of people. Start with your friends and family. One of my annual activities over the Christmas break with my family is for each of us to create a vision board. We get loads of coloured felt tips, as well as google search photos and create our vision board on A3 paper, then laminate it. It is then used throughout the year for our placemats at meals. In September, my 7 year old son read his out and said, “Mummy, I have not scored a goal in football yet and I’ve got it on my vision board.” Guess what, the next week he scored a goal.


For your business goals, you may be in a mastermind group, or have a business coach you can share your goals with or you may have a business buddy, or a colleague at work. In sharing your goals, you are committing, and then you will see the goal evolve.


You might be asking, why is it important to have a vision?


If you have a vision you have something to aim for. In having something to aim for you will have more success, be more efficient, have fun and build better relationships so you can build your business, and achieve what you want in your personal life. Don’t go through life being a ‘gunner’ where you’re ’gunner do this and gunner do that’. Be a ‘doer’. Write down your vision and goals and go for it! Achieve them and be proud of it.


Claudia Fragapane is an Inspiration to Entrepreneurs and Business Owners


Are there times in your business where you lack confidence and motivation to get to the next level? As a business owner, I know I have these moments. Claudia would have felt this in her gymnastics career, but would be especially feeling this each week on Strictly Come Dancing. She is way out of her comfort zone. Claudia has learnt a completely new skill than what she has been doing for so many years in the gym, and has risen above the challenges. She may be a pocket rocket in the gym…..dancing is so different.


Think of Claudia when you have a low point and believe you cannot achieve your next goal. Claudia oozes confidence without being precocious. She doesn’t care about her size, and has achieved so much in learning a completely new skill which is out of her comfort zone, showing determination and drive. Something all business owners need.


Support Claudia Fragapane – what an inspiration. 

Its Not too Late to Set Goals for 2017

How are you going with setting your goals for 2017? “But it’s only November!” I hear you say. Last year I fell into the trap of not thinking about my goals until January. I’d set myself short-term goals, but hadn’t thought about my vision and exact goals until January. I should have started thinking about them in November so that I was ready to hit the ground running from January.


What are the benefits of setting your goals now? The biggest benefit is that you can visualise your year ahead. Think about painting a picture. What do you want to achieve in your year? What are your dreams? Think about your personal life as well as your business. Think about your health as well as your family. Think about your finances too. They all interrelate and effect one another.


An activity I do with my children and husband every December is to create a vision board. We get a large piece of paper each and draw a big mindmap with pictures and lots of colours. We then laminate it and use this as our placemats for the dinner table throughout the year so we’re reminded of our vision and goals. It is not only a great exercise to help each of us focus, but it also helps us communicate what each other is thinking. I remember my biggest dream when I was younger was to go travelling. If I had communicated this better to my mother I wouldn’t have upset her when I told her I wanted to ‘fly from the nest’. It is an amazing way to fully understand what your children and partner are all thinking.


To find out more about how to create a vision, set goals in 2017, I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning.



Have Vision, Set Goals and Change Lives.....

This year, I have based my year around a YouTube video that I watched in January on Sir Nicolas Winton. I’d heard about him before but I hadn’t put what he did into context. Recently, we were fortunate enough to have a lovely lady from the Czech Republic stay with us and we realised that friends of ours would not be here today if it wasn’t for Sir Nicolas Winton. I looked into more detail about what he had done and realised how much a simple goal of his effected so many people’s lives. In one of the YouTube video’s I watched the reporter asked, “do you realise you now have 50,000 grandchildren from the 669 children you saved?” he humbly said, “What a responsibility.”


The goals we set in our life can effect so many people. I decided that my goals for 2016 were going to be goals based around helping people build relationships in their businesses and in effect could change their life. My biggest aim was to get into more businesses and organisations and work with them to build relationships so they could achieve their vision.


If you set realistic goals that relate to your dream, you will be changing lives. My dream is that people in life understand each other more, thus working more effectively with each other and building deeper relationships so they can be successful, more efficient and have fun.


Let’s start now. If you start to think about the goals you want to achieve in 2017 then you’re one step closer to fulfilling your dream. The most important thing to remember when setting goals is to make sure you achieve them. It’s no use coming back a year later and feeling like you’ve been defeated. Set your goals from the heart and you will strive more to achieve them.


To find out more about how to create a vision, set goals and change lives I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning.



The most important part of communication is about hearing what is NOT being said

 As a child, when arguing with one of my siblings, in an attempt to resolve things my mother would ask, what was said? This frustrated me because it wasnt just the words being communicated that caused the argument, it was the gestures and the tone of voice.


Communication involves much more than just words, so in order to understand the full message we have to look deeper at the gestures and tone of voice as well. As a result, building rapport is essential and enables us to fully connect and understand what the other person is saying. It is much more difficult to portray the true meaning of conversation if we are not actually in the conversation ourself.


Hearing is an ability, but listening is a skill, and listening is more than just listening to the words, it is listening to the meaning as well. Often the meaning is underlined about what is NOT being said and so we need to take into account more than just words and look at the whole communication to fully interpret the true meaning.


When my husband asks me whats wrong? I respond to him nothing. This can be interpreted in many different ways depending on body language and tone. When listening and communicating we have to look deeper than nothing and look at the whole meaning, particularly about what is NOT being said. By asking more questions, we can get to the true meaning. So next time a friend, colleague or your partner responds to you with nothing, try to clarify what the real meaning is.


 Once you truly know about people, you will succeed at work and in life. To find out more about how to build relationships both personally and professionally to build your business, I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning.

Build Relationships to Build Relationships

Getting along - shaking hands.jpg

One thing I will never forget about my father when I was growing up was the way he communicated with people. He was amazing. He always got to the level of the person and related to them no matter who they were.


I remember watching him from one day to the next and remembering that he was incredible when he spoke to anyone. I remember one day in particular. In the morning he spoke to the poshest person I had ever seen. He related to them so well and really connected with them. Then that very same afternoon, he spoke to someone who looked like they didn’t have 2 pennies to rub together. He also connected with them and made them feel like they were the only person in the world. He was amazing at building relationships with every individual, no matter who they were, making them feel unique.


From this I realise that building relationships is so powerful. Building relationships will lead to success and getting the job done in an efficient way so people trust you and want to work with you. If you connect with people, they will want to be with you and they will therefore want to work with you. Just thinking about the bottom line does not lead to success in the long term. Think about the long term.


Recently, I have had 2 past clients who have come back to me after working with them 7 years ago. In that time I have moved to Australia and moved back. I believe this is because I spent quality time working on the relationship with them. When I met up with them again, it felt like I had just worked with them yesterday. It came down to the fact that I had built a strong relationship with them from the beginning.


 “Once you truly know about people, you will succeed at work and in life.” To find out more about how to build relationships more both personally and professionally to build your business, I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning.


Behavioural Styles can help your Influence in Meetings


Meetings, meetings, meetings….are you having meetings for the sake of meetings? Are you getting the results you want from meetings? Are you getting actions that are followed up and completed after meetings?


When I was growing up my mother always taught me to treat everyone the way I would expect to be treated. Yes, this is a good ethic to have, but does it work when you are trying to influence others in meetings?  People need to be treated the way they want to be treated. They need to feel comfortable with you, like you and trust you, so that you can influence the outcome you want in meetings.


Have you ever attended a meeting and thought, “this is a waste of my time”. There was no agenda, no objective, no outcome and no actions. I felt like every time I opened my mouth, I was talked over. No-one was interested in a positive outcome for the meeting. Why was I there?”


When I attend a meeting, I like to look at the agenda and plan before the meeting. I think about the people attending and what I will need to discuss with them in the meeting. I also think about what they want to get out of the meeting, how they are going to react to decisions and how I could influence them.


Meetings can be a waste of time if we do not communicate well in them. Adjusting the way you communicate depending on the other person’s behavioural style will help you in meetings. Some people may want to get to the point and only think about results. On the other hand, if you are someone who is more interested in the person and the long term relationship, you will need to adjust the words you use, otherwise they will switch off.


Who wants to ever come out of a meeting feeling like it was a waste of time? Not me. With effective communication, solid actions and using influence your meetings can always be productive.

“Once you truly know about people, you will succeed at work and in life.” 

To find out more about how to influence others more effectively in meetings, I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning.



Do you know what behavioural style you are? Here's a quick test......

Growing up my brother wound me up. I didn’t get him. He thought things through in detail, he was very serious about everything. He worked to systems, even having a strict system to completing his homework. He didn’t enjoy socializing, having very few friends and was serious in everything he did. He was very closed, not open. I found this kind of strange as a child, not understanding him.

If I knew then what I know now, I would have worked him out when we were very young. We are exact opposites in our behaviours and so we went about things in completely different ways. Here’s a quick test:

Are you fast paced or slower paced? Do you have many projects on the go, trying to get lots of things done quickly? Or are you more precise, more structured and slower paced in your thinking?

Are you open or closed? Do you focus on getting the job done, the detail of what you are doing, and how you are going to complete it? Or are you interested in the person and how they will feel?

We are the way we are. We can’t change this. Some of us go about things at a very fast pace, juggling many things. Others are extremely measured, thinking things through. Some of us are very open and all about the people, who they are, what they feel. Others are more closed, more serious about the job at hand and how to achieve results, being focused and completing it with a checklist. 

So the 4 categories are:

  1. Faster paced – Closed - Director*

  2. Faster paced – Open - Socialiser*

  3. Slower paced – Open - Relater*

  4. Slower paced – Closed - Thinker*


We also have a bit of each in us, having different intensities of the behaviour.


“Once you truly know about people, you will succeed at work and in life.”

To find out more about how to build relationships with people, understanding how they behave, I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning. We will initially complete a detailed Behavioural Styles assessment, detailing who you are and how you behave. Then we can work together to achieve goals to work more effectively with people.

* Words taken from The Platinum Rule - a registered trademark of Dr Tony Alessandra used with permission

How to improve your relationship with a colleague you clash with….

I remember my first job. I ended up managing a team when I had only been in the position for 3 months. There was a lady I had to manage who really annoyed me. She was extremely sweet, but took forever to have conversations with everyone. We had very high targets to meet and she didn’t understand she had to hit them fast. She wanted to giggle and laugh all the time, wanted to have fun, long lunches and just didn’t get the job done, and done quickly, which was my expectation.  

In the short term, I didn’t see her being successful for the company. However, in the long term, she ended up being a great asset to the team. She just went about things differently to me. I wanted to get results and get the job done quickly. She wanted to have fun and really get to know the person, having long conversations. To me, this was a waste of time and as I said - it annoyed me.

If I knew then what I know now, I would have been able to work more productively with her. She was mainly interested in the person, looking after them, caring for them whilst also having fun. I was interested in the results and making sure we got the job done. I needed to understand how to work better with her, be patient, give her more time and understand her way of dealing with people. Both of us were successful, we just needed to understand that we approached things differently.

When working with colleagues, we need to work out who they are, why they do what they do and then we can build our relationship, as colleagues, much more effectively. We work with other people for so many hours during the week... wouldn’t it be much more pleasant to have a positive working atmosphere, getting the most out of others, rather than being frustrated and getting worked up because they do things differently. If you truly understand why people behave in the way they do, you will build relationships at a much faster pace.

Once you truly know about people, you will succeed at work and in life.” To find out more about how to build relationships, with your colleagues, I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning.



Top Tips to be Positively Effective in Meetings

Even for the most experienced of professionals, meetings can sometimes be difficult to get through. In fact, it’s more common than you might think for people to doubt not only the purpose of the meeting, but whether they are actually contributing anything useful by being there.

Have you ever sat in a meeting and thought to yourself, “nobody even knows that I’m here” or “what is the objective of this meeting anyway?”

Other common thoughts you might have during a meeting include, “I wish that person would just stop talking,” or perhaps, “I’d like to state my opinion but I don’t think anybody is actually going to listen.”

If these thoughts and anxieties sound all too familiar, perhaps you don’t fully understand how to communicate with others and get your point across effectively.

A meeting shouldn’t be a waste of anyone’s time – particularly these days when our lives seem to be busier than ever. And you should not be attending a meeting just for the sake of attending it; it should have clear objectives, be productive, and have measurable outcomes as well as actions.

When you are attending a meeting, you want to build relationships and communicate in a way that means you are heard. You should have the chance to speak and be listened to. As well as this, it’s important that people like you, trust you and feel comfortable with you, so that you can influence your desired outcome as much as possible.

Of course, meetings can be a waste of time if we do not communicate well during them. Adjusting the way that you communicate according to the other person’s behavioural style will help you immensely. For example, if a person asks question after question after question, wanting further clarity and explanations, they are not simply wasting time – this is probably due to their behavioural style.

So rather than hurrying the meeting along and skipping straight to the point, which will only cause frustration and miscommunication between the two of you, use language that person will relate to in order to influence them and get them on side.

Who wants to ever come out of a meeting feeling like it was a waste of time? Not me! With effective communication, solid actions and the power of influence, your meetings can always be productive. Remember: “Once you truly know about people, you will succeed at work and in life.”

To find out more about how to influence others more effectively in meetings, I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning.



What are Behavioural Styles, and How Can They Fix the Client Relationship?

Have you ever spoken to a supplier, only to feel a huge sense of disappointment when they fail to connect with you, or everything they say irritates you? Sometimes it can feel as if they have no idea of how to build a positive relationship with you.

On the other hand, suppliers: have you ever had a client who comes in and you simply don’t know how to relate to them? Perhaps you just don’t ‘get’ them, or they seem to rub you up the wrong way?

If that sounds familiar, don’t worry – you are not alone. It’s human nature to click with some people straight away, and others not so much; as they say, we are the way we are. But what if you could do something about that? Wouldn’t it be great if you were able to…

  1. Click with people from the word ‘go’?
  2. Find a connection with someone as soon as you start talking to them?
  3. Understand why people do certain things, and find a way to relate to them regardless of their actions or behaviours?

It’s important to remember not to take things too personally – it is an individual’s behaviour that we respond to, not their personality as such.

Let’s take John, for example. He is one of your top clients, but every time you speak to him he goes into great detail about his needs, explaining every minute detail. As a professional, you would of course like to listen to every detail; but you’re also aware that you only have a limited time and are already falling behind.

What do you say? How do you act? What we have to understand is that this is John – he is like this with everyone he meets and in everything he does. There is no use getting frustrated, because this is just his behavioural style. What we can do, however, is adjust our own behaviour to accommodate John and provide him with the best possible service.

First of all, you need to pick up from his language what his behavioural style is and make sure you book in enough time when you speak with him. The next thing you need to do is take a deep breath, be patient and ask John the right questions so that he doesn’t ramble on for too long. By understanding his behavioural style, how to communicate with him and the best words to use, you are going to make your life much, much easier.

“Once you truly know about people, you will succeed at work and in life.” To find out more about how to successfully relate to your clients, colleagues, and even friends and family, I can come and coach your team in a safe, comfortable environment that is conducive for learning.


Behavioural Styles Can Help Your Effectiveness as a Team Leader


When I was growing up my mother always taught me to treat people the way I would expect to be treated. This is a good ethos to have, but does it work when you are trying to develop business relationships?

When acting as a team leader, you need to be constantly working on building strong relationships with the people around you. This is important, as when acting as a team leader not only will you need to work well with the people being led within the team, but also the people you are answering to.

The people around you need to be treated the way THEY want to be treated. They need to feel comfortable with you, like you and trust you.

So, what are some of the biggest problems when leading a team? Whenever I train a group on how to be an effective team leader, the route of all highlighted problems can always be traced back to communication.

Being a team leader is one of the most difficult job roles in any organisation; ‘Why?’ I hear you ask – well, you are the person in the middle. Not only do you need to answer to those above you, but you also need to justify their actions to those in the team you are leading.

How do you feel when you are trying to get your message across in a positive manner, but your team is not responding? How do you feel when you have been told to communicate a decision to your team member, but you know they will be unhappy with it and may put the blame on you?

One way to tackle both of the above issues is to communicate with each team member in an individual manner, so you get the most out of that person. Using DISC language can help you in this way.

Behavioural styles have been recognised since Hippocrates. In looking at how a person behaves, not their personality, we can adapt our communication skills to get the best results from them. Communicating better as a team leader will not only help you to be more efficient, but by understanding the behavioural styles of each team member you will be able to work with them more effectively and get more out of them. This will motivate them to achieve more in their job role.

Being a great team leader stems from understanding people. When you know more about people, communicate better with them, set goals to help them achieve more and work with them in a more efficient way, you will be a successful team leader.