Leadership Training and Coaching Testimonials
Development of long term business strategy
“I have worked with Tony for many months in developing and improving our business across a wide range of strategic issues.
Some of the key areas where Tony has supported our business are: development of long term business strategy, including work on mission, vision and values for the business; Setting up a KPI dashboard for the business metrics; Setting up a 3 month ongoing planning mechanism; and a sounding board for key developments in the business.
He has proved to be pragmatic, inventive and flexible. His methods are not generic, he has adapted his technique to suit our methods of working and our needs.“
Eur Ing Andrew Leask, Rodgers Leask, Derby
Huge increase in footfall
“Flavours have been working with Tony for the last 2 months and in that time he has helped us with several goals to move the business forwards. We’ve already acquired 3 new clients for our buffets and as a result of the direct marketing we’ve see a huge increase in footfall in the shop. Last week we had 100 new faces. We are now considering increasing our staffing levels to accommodate this.
We have seen the following improvements:
- Shop turnover increased = 16%
- Footfall increased = 14%
- Increase in buffet turnover = 60%
Thanks Tony, we’re looking forward to the next months and are excited to see how far we can move our business forwards”
Sarah and George Reid, Flavours, Nottingham
Clarity, focus and direction
“Working with Tony over the last 18 months has been a journey well worth taking. His enthusiastic coaching style and business expertise have helped myself and my co-director to bring clarity, focus and direction to the long term business plan that we recently launched to the company. I would recommend him to any owner/manager of an SME who may be seeking a fresh perspective on their business, goals and challenges.”
Paul Jackman, Thorn Baker, Nottingham
In my first 4 months, I signed up 17 new clients!
“ In January 2012 I joined the Solopreneur Club™, I realised that if I wanted to make my business a success then I needed support from the very start. I have now attended five workshops and over the past few months have started to see a real difference, not only in my business but also my personal growth.
At the workshops we are provided with practical tools and techniques for us to apply to our businesses and during our 121’s Tony gives guidance and support that is specific to our needs.
Since working with Tony I have developed my USP, a clear marketing and strategic plan. I have got a better understanding of my fixed costs, revenue and profit margins. I have increased my client base and have confidence that I am building strong foundations which will help my business grow and be successful.
In my first 4 months of working with the Solopreneur Club™ I signed up 17 new clients which was fantastic!”
Shamshad Walker, City Local, Nottingham
Doubles sales in 12 months!
“I have been working with Tony for over a year now and although I was admittedly skeptical to start with, I have found our sessions to be very beneficial. Running my own businesses, it is difficult to find the time to discuss the difficulties I have within the business and also to keep a focus on my aspirations for the future. Working with Tony has kept me focused on my key long-term objectives, but has also ensured that actions have been taken in line with these objectives. Its one thing knowing what needs to be done, but quite another putting it all into practice while still trying to deal with the day to day of running the business. In a short period of time working with Tony, I have already made some significant changes, which have brought about marked improvements in the performance of my team and the way I am managing my business. We recorded sales figures for the last quarter that are almost double the same period in the previous year and I believe that our work will have a significant impact on the success of the business over the long term.”
Jason Houlston, Web Design Business Owner (3K Design), Sunderland
Tony got me mentally prepared for 3 large presentations
“As I prepared for 3 presentations to 700 store managers I called Tony Brooks to help me move from good to great on my presentation skills.
Tony focused on the details of the content and presentation that I had not thought of and more importantly, to get me mentally prepared.
These two areas really made the difference and all 3 of the shows went really well and I received great feedback. Thank you Tony”
Tim Allinson, UK Logisitics Director, Dixons Retail
Turning a vision into a reality
“I have avoided Business Coaching in the past. However, over the past few months I’ve been working with Building Bridges and I’m happy to report that their approach is fundamentally different – they steer you through practical (and comfortable) steps to establish your business goals and help you to take the necessary steps to turn your vision into reality. Within three months of working on the Business Growth Program, I have already noticed a significant difference in the way I approach each business situation enabling me to prioritise my activities whilst ensuring that I don’t lose sight of longer-term goals.
We are now relocating our offices; recruiting new members of staff and achieving improved results in attracting new customers for the services we offer.
The process has been thoroughly rewarding (and affordable!) and I have no hesitation in recommending the Business Services of Building Bridges to other businesses who would benefit from their unique program!”
Dave Ashley, Director, Online Marketing Consultancy in Cheltenham.
Increase in sales in areas of the business of 30%
“After working with Tony Brooks as my coach for 3 months, we restructured our business and saw an increase in sales in areas of the business of 30%. Tony has not only helped bring structure and direction to my business, by providing a clear organised approach to achieving business goals, but he has also worked with me on aspects of my internal thinking that were holding me and the business back. My confidence in my own ability is now significantly higher having worked through some totally fascinating and rewarding sessions. I was not totally convinced about using a coach initially, but would have not hesitation in recommending Tony as a Personal or Business Coach.”
James Cornwell, Small Business Owner, Nottingham
A complete change in direction
“I can highly recommend Tony. He is motivating, absolutely knows how to get the best from his clients and does it in a professional but very enjoyable way. When I started with Tony I had just left a very long and enjoyable career with the Foreign Office. I wanted to do something different and wasn’t sure what. It had to be something I felt passionate about and the direction this took was to pursue a career in property. With no experience or qualifications in this area it felt impossible to break into the real estate business. However, working with Tony, he helped me find both the confidence and a path to working with Re/max Estate agents.
I started in April 09, working for myself, but not by myself, on a commission only basis. I have now developed a database of 115 applicants and recently, the Director gave me the silver cup for the most activity that week!! I am hugely motivated, seeing some fantastic properties, meeting great people and loving it!!“
Mandy Woodward, Associate Re/Max Estate Agents, London
Greater growth and success
“I have been working with Tony for the last four months and have found his help and support as my business coach invaluable. Tony is very knowledgeable, practical and skilled at getting to the heart of any issues I have. This has lead to me feeling far more motivated and on target with my business which has in turn lead to greater growth and success. Tony and I initially worked through the Business Growth Programme. This helped me to get a far better picture of where I am performing, where I want to go and what I’m not doing which would be of great benefit to my business. This formed the basis of our continued coaching sessions after the five sessions were complete and together we continually review the work that came from this. The programme has been invaluable in getting me focused and on track with my targets and goals.”
Susan Campbell, Owner of a Training Consultancy in Glasgow.
Quick results which transformed my working week
“I am extremely happy with the work Tony & I have undertaken over the last few months. He helped me achieve quick results which transformed my working week. I was a little jaded with the day to day running of the business, to a point where I was feeling stressed both at work and during the weekend. By helping me organise my time efficiently I now feel much more in control of my workload and have discovered a renewed enthusiasm. As a result of this the time I spend working on the strategic elements of the business has increased from around 10% to 19%. One of the key developments resulting from this has been the introduction of two new initiatives into the business which are already accounting for approximately 17% of the revenue for the business. I had tried unsuccessfully to sort out these issues myself but a combination of someone standing back from the business and holding me to account for implementing the changes has succeeded. Thanks Tony.”
Nigel Toplis, Blue Spire
Gave our management meetings a new lease of life
“Tony has been working with us for a number of months on our 2011 business plan. He has been able to re-launch our management meetings and give them a new lease of life. We have already carried through a number of effective changes within the business and we plan to continue to use Tony in pushing forward new ideas and developing projects within the business. I have no hesitation in recommending Tony and the services of Building Bridges”
Heather White, HR Manager, AO Smith engineering, Gainsborough.
The whole team now has a clear view of where we want the business to go
“We recently brought in the services of Building Bridges and worked with Tony Brooks on some 1-2-1 coaching and an extended group strategy session. The main reason for doing this at this stage, is due to the growth of the business and in order to grow I believe you have to ensure you have a clear collective view of where the business is going. I felt it was important to get external support to spot obvious issues and areas to focus on and pass on expertise. The group session was extremely well structured and it brought out the best in everyone and got them to see the bigger picture. The follow up plan of action was both professional and effective for our needs. We now all have a clear view of where we want the business to go and a plan on the road to getting there. This was all money well spent in my eyes and this will now form a regular part of our on going strategy, to focus our minds and drive some enthusiasm within the team when it’s needed the most.”
Matt Wheatcroft, Purpose Media, Multi media business in the East Midlands
I am now making more money, working less hours
“I moved over to working with Tony after getting a clear sense that my previous coach was increasingly more interested in imposing their own agenda on me, steering me in a direction I had expressed no desire to go. I’d met Tony only twice before and hadn’t seen him for a long time but he left a lasting impression on me, one which made him the first person I turned to. We started working together and he very quickly homed in on the main reasons why I hired a coach in the first place and has kept revisiting MY top priorities regularly to make sure we’re still working in exactly the direction I want to go. I’m now well on my way, and with more clarity and certainty than ever before.When I made the decision to leave my previous coach I was a self employed, overstretch businessman. 4 months of working with Tony and he’s coached me through the process of getting control, creating leverage and forming a limited company. I’m now making more money, working less hours and have a crystal clear vision of what my top priorities are and exactly what I need to do each day. I’m back on top and much happier, you can’t buy that. Thank you Tony.”
Chris Coney, Upright Solutions
Helped me to define clear, measurable goals to create focus
“Growing your own business takes super human effort. Not only are you trying to grow a business very quickly, you also have to take on tasks that you’ve never done before. It can be a daunting prospect and it is easy to lose sight of your important targets and goals.
I was fortunate enough to have met Tony at a networking event, and liked him immediately. I was reassured by his confidence and positive manner and was glad when the opportunity arose for us to work together. Tony has helped me to define clear, measurable goals in several areas of my business which helped me to refocus on areas such as the sales pipeline, as well as my marketing strategy.
Having an unbiased, objective set of eyes on the business has been invaluable. It is because of this that I decided to sign up to the Solopreneur Club™. The adage “business is a lonely place” can seem very true at times, so surrounding yourself with a support network is vital. Working with 11 other business owners with similar challenges to my own, gives me great confidence that they will provide the support I need to guarantee further success for the future.”
Russ Parsloe, 4th Level IT
Creates the perfect environment to pursue new ideas and opportunities
“I have been working with Tony for a couple of months now and have much greater clarity about the direction I want to go in and how to get there! Tony manages to be both supportive and challenging; creating the perfect environment to pursue new ideas and opportunities. I was not unhappy with the way my businesses were developing but it has still made such a difference working with Tony and I would not hesitate to recommend him.”
Katherine Wilson, number8glass and number8marketing
Helped me regain focus and get the balance right in my business
“Tony has been invaluable as a business coach to me over the last 6 months. His support and insightful comments have really helped me to regain focus and get the balance right in my business. I’m certainly in a better position as a result of Tony’s input and am impressed by his ability to understand my requirements and motivations quickly. I would not hesitate to recommend Tony at Building Bridges and am looking forward to taking part in The Presentation Club this month.”
Alison Rouse, Event Management, House of Rouse
At least 50% more productive with my time
“The structure Tony gave me enabled me to get known for my entry level CRM system, whilst retaining my core strategy of system development to remove time consuming business processes. So finding a niche whilst remaining generalist.
My main improvements really came from being more focused and more productive. I would say at least 50% more productive with my time by looking to plan more, and prioritise effectively.
From a revenue perspective, it has allowed me to go from picking up small jobs to having a pipeline where I have a value proposition. This gives an anticipated revenue figure of £38000 a year in a short space of time.
I have said to Tony – “If it wasn’t for you I wouldn’t have a business now. Probably would have cut my losses and gone to work in Tesco’s on the tills! Although am sure Tesco is a lovely place to work, it is nothing compared to the joy of owning your own business, and one that you can see is growing healthily.”
Francis Logan, FML Information Solutions
Helped me focus on issues I preferred not to look at
“I’d just thought I’d drop you a line about how valuable I have found being a member of the Solopreneur Club™ over the past few months.
When I first joined the Club, Volute had not long set up a product aimed at smaller businesses, called Grow Your Own Website. The Club has helped me develop and fine tune this offer, particularly how we can keep this both affordable to our customers at the same time as being profitable to us. You have helped us to identify costs, profit, scope and pricing strategies for this offer. I particularly valued your input into how we could set up a network of resellers, who can use our product to gain additional work for their own businesses, as well as picking up the reseller fee from us.
The Solopreneur Club™ has helped me focus on issues that I preferred not to look at, addressing shortcomings in our approach to areas as diverse as marketing, networking, sales, finance, outsourcing and time management. I particularly like the group focus of the Club and how between us we help solve problems and dilemmas that fellow members’ businesses are facing.
I can wholeheartedly recommend the Club to any business owner who is considering how best to develop their products and services, looking to address deficiencies and how to best bring themselves to the attention of the market.”
Tim Ryan, Volute and Grow Your Own Website
Developing new products and services and entering new markets not previously envisaged
“One of the reasons I started working with Tony originally was because I was painfully aware that whilst my strength has always been working IN my business I was utterly hopeless at working ON my business. No-one particularly likes to draw attention to the things they aren’t good at, so doing that in front of other people was a scary prospect. With that in mind, it now makes me chuckle because it has in fact been the group aspect of the Club which I have enjoyed the most, and in some respects which has brought the greatest value. Tony structures each meeting based around a clear agenda, arming us with all the tools, processes and practical direction we need. We then work on various discussion topics together. Each member runs a different type of business and we all have very different personalities. We each have something different to offer; this is what brings the real strength. We are able to support each other, make insightful suggestions and recommendations and view each other’s particular situations with a fresh pair of eyes. Over and above this it has also been wonderful to be able to share my successes with a group of people who I know are genuinely thrilled for me when things go well.
This testimonial would be incomplete without saying an enormous thank you to Tony personally. The benefits I have felt from the Club as a whole have been really wonderful. However, the support I have had from Tony personally has been truly exceptional. My business has changed immeasurably during this last 10 months. I have developed new products and services and am entering new markets which I had not envisaged. Tony has been with me every step of the way. He has given me endless encouragement and guidance. Some of his suggestions have been surprising, but always absolutely spot-on. He consistently demonstrates that he really understands my business; he takes on board even the smallest things I talk through with him and clearly gives these consideration outside of our sessions, then responding with practical solutions or fresh ideas.
I have reached a point in my business now where I simply don’t know what I would do without Tony. I cannot recommend him highly enough, and for anyone who perhaps has the same fears I had before joining the Solopreneur Club™ I would recommend that, like me, you take a leap of faith – I’m convinced you will not be disappointed!”
Judith Phoenix-Meese, Phoenix True Potential Ltd, Nottingham
Immediately engaged students in his workshops
“Tony delivered a series of two workshops, for a group of final year Foundation degree students. The focus of the workshops was on business and presentation skills. This was a core part of the delivery toward the student’s final assessment in one of their modules. Tony was particularly proactive in finding out background information on the students, from myself. This was an integral part of the success of the workshops; in that Tony took the time to understand the students and their motivations.
Tony’s amiable, yet focussed delivery style, helped immediately engage students in his sessions. The content was delivered in a highly professional manner and it was clear that a lot of work had gone into preparing the various resources for the workshops.
Feedback from the students has been very positive and I have no hesitation in booking Tony to do more work with us in the future”
Andy King, Confetti ICT
Technical sales consultants confirm the practical value of the training
“Tony has designed and delivered a number of bespoke training courses for Jigsaw24. The subjects have varied, depending on our requirements, often around constructing sales proposals or delivering sales presentations, and have covered both the theory and practice required. Our technical sales consultants have all confirmed the practical value of this training”
Simon Smith, Training Manager, Jigsaw24, Nottingham
I am now presenting with renewed confidence
“I am half way through the Presentation Club course and have already received much improved feedback on my presentation skills. I am now presenting with renewed confidence, clarity and structure, all of which engage my audience and maintain their interest. Thanks Tony”
Scott Hingley, Touch Design
I achieved a very positive response and got great feedback from the audience
“The Presentation Club grabbed my interest. I had been to a number of presentations within my own industry (IT) and have been lucky enough to experience talented speakers who clearly showed an ability to command a level of respect from their audience. This was giving them a clear advantage as they were the ones that people wanted to speak with.
I attended Tony’s course, which ran over a number of weeks. The course was very informative and each session was very interactive with all of the students. Tony gave input to each of us and I began to increase my confidence in standing up and presenting to the group.
The end result – I managed to get the opportunity of speaking at a large event at the Nottingham Forest Ground. Albeit I was extremely nervous, I managed to present using the skills I had been taught and I achieved a very positive response and got great feedback from my audience. I can honestly say that my confidence has grown further in presenting, not just large presentations but in my day to day sales. Tony provides a great deal of support and confidence. He provides input when things are not quite right and praise when you deliver your presentation well.
I would therefore have no hesitation in recommending Tony Brooks to help you not just in presentation skills, but in business skills as a whole. Tony continues to learn himself from his own mentors and is a strong believer that coaching and business skills are a continuos journey, not just a single one off training course.
Many thanks Tony for improving my own confidence”
David Anderson, Basic Business Systems Ltd, Nottingham
Getting me to rethink my presentation techniques
“I am enjoying the presentation club workshops! It’s getting me to rethink my presentation techniques to keep up with current trends and getting me back on track with thinking about how I am running my business. The workshops provide a chance to look at individual issues, as well as a system to work out the best techniques to present my business in the most interesting and effective way possible“
Alison Holland, A L’Atelier
Won pieces of business thanks to the Presentation Club
“I have been attending the monthly workshops with The Presentation Club and I can’t make any suggestions as to how to improve them as I honestly think they are great and would recommend them to anyone. I have won pieces of business the past 6 months that I can categorically say I would not have won if I had not worked with The Presentation Club“
Jenni Inight, Successfully Yours
Came away with lots of food for thought and a 90 day challenge included
“It was a couple of hours well spent with Tony at the free workshop. The amount of free tips and value he gave was incredible and I came away with lots of food for thought and a 90 day challenge included. I’d recommend going along to find out more about Tony and what he can offer you and your business.”
Vicky Stanton, Inspiring People Solutions Ltd
Tips and insights into positive thinking
“I attended Tony’s presentation Success and Happiness in July 2013. I find Tony one of the most positive, upbeat and interesting speakers I have heard in a long time. He is always smiling and that coupled with his tips and insights into positive thinking and how that can make a big impact on both your business and profit levels was very thought provoking. I can highly recommend Tony from what I have seen and heard so far and I look forward to attending more of these in the future”
Liz Seaton, Client Engagement, Primary
Understanding yourself is key to business success
“Understanding yourself is key to business success and Tony provides insights and observations to help you towards this understanding, and provides recommendations for further investigations.”
Gordon Brearley, Specialist Business Consultant
I am back in the zone
“On 18.7.13, I attended Tony’s Achieving Success and Happiness in Business workshop. The content covered many areas, from psychological tools and models, to practical methods of goal setting, namely the 90 day plan. Prior to attending, I felt my business focus and motivation were slipping. I found the talk inspirational, fast moving and entertaining. The following morning saw me writing up a 90 day plan, so I am pleased to say I am back in the zone, and have some great reading material too, as recommended by Tony. I fail to see how you could attend this workshop and not draw energy and direction from it, so recommend it whole heartedly.”
A better sense of direction
“I would first of all like to thank Tony for the kind invitation to attend His seminar, “Achieving Success & Happiness in your Business”, I found the seminar extremely interesting and most of all eye opening. It has made me look at My Business, the way I do business and myself in general in a whole new way.
I actually arrived at your seminar after having a particularly bad day with several things seemingly getting on top of me, however I did leave the seminar feeling much better in myself and with a whole new focus and outlook on the way I was now going to approach each day, I even woke up this morning, the day after the seminar with a new vigour and spring in my step knowing that I had a better sense of direction.
I am now looking at my 90 day plan and I intend to follow it through because I am confident it will bring me greater success & happiness in my business. I would recommend anyone who has a business to attend Tony’s seminar as it will give you some great ideas to help you break bad habits and to give you a whole new mind-set to use each day leading you to that all important promise of success and happiness.“
I found the workshops most helpful
“I have been a member of the Solopreneur Club™ and have found the workshops most helpful in the formation of plans for current and future ventures. The structure is excellent and reflects the learning requirements of the group. I am looking forward to the continuing development of our relationships, coupled with Tony’s excellent handling of the subject material. I would wholeheartedly recommend any hard pressed entrepeneur to sign up for the Solopreneur Club™”
Gary Powell, Castellan IT, Nottingham
Massively improved my presentations
“After seeing Tony present multiple times, I enrolled on one of Tony’s excellent courses and couldn’t of been happier with the entire course. The presentation club gave me the practical tips and tricks I needed to improve, and combined with the excellent handouts and homework, it meant I was able to revisit all of Tony’s information when I needed to (which I now do before all my big presentations).
To summarise, great practical information, expertly presented which has massively improved my presentations and in turn helped me to sell to a crowd.”
Ross Davies, Strafe Creative, Nottingham
Supportive, encouraging, yet challenging
“Being coached by Tony has been a journey of discovery, especially since losing my job through redundancy and setting up my business. I’ve found him very knowledgeable regarding the ins and outs of establishing a new business and very supportive, encouraging, yet challenging, especially when the road gets rocky, a sense of overwhelm takes over and you want to give up. He is trustworthy, consistent and reliable and great to work with. Highly recommended if you’re seeking value for money, friendliness and warmth, encouragement and consequently great results.”
Claudia Crawley, Winning Pathways
I am no longer afraid of change
“My experience of coaching with Tony Brooks has really impacted my life, in that it has helped me to keep my goals as constant priorities. He makes sure I am always on track with actions, support and the opportunity to explore new ideas within a totally trusting relationship.
I have realised my full potential and taken action with confidence, knowing that I have support, accountability and a clear success plan in place, as I work towards the goals that are important to me.
Since August 2008 I have lost 1 stone, made serious changes in relation to my career path and I have become far more creative, I am no longer afraid of change, and constantly look forward to the future, as I get closer to my inspiring goals.
I would recommend coaching with Tony to anybody that would like to move forward but feels that they don’t know how. I know that I would not have achieved anything like as much in a short space of time if I did not have Tony as my coach.”
Jamiylah Muhammed, Social Care Work, London
Growth with the support of Tony and a group of peers
“I am looking forward to working with Tony and feel that the Solopreneur Club™ will not only provide me with the framework to help develop my business, it will also put me in contact with other people in a similar situation to me.”
Dom Sterland, Landing Net (Solopreneur Club™ member)