InFocus: Cut By Beam get support for rapid growth
Mentoring, Workshops and Grants
On one hand: stepping away from being a ‘9 to 5er’, and opening the doors to flexibility, working on your own terms, doing something you love and growing your dream bit by bit.
The other hand: second guessing decisions, plus a heap of other bumpy road stuff that presents itself as you carve the path of running your own business.
What’s useful, and indeed, reassuring, is to have another pair of hands to offer impartial and experienced advice, to back ideas, alleviate worry, or to help fine tune decisions.
Jenny Shipley, owner of Cut By Beam, had one such person: InFocus Business Development Manager (BDM), Carolyn Inger. Carolyn became Jenny’s mentor and steady hand in the midst of rapid business growth with a client base boasting national players such as Finisterre, Surfers Against Sewage, Keep Cup and Hiut Denim. Additionally, Cut by Beam’s craftmanship was put on a global stage having been commissioned to create wooden laser cut table placings and menus for the G7 banquet, and last month, the Grand Depart trophy for the prestigious Tour of Britain cycle race.
When you work by yourself it is hard to diversify from set ideas that you have, when you bring someone new in you can often get a totally new solution to a problem that you didn’t realise you had. Having a BDM for the business also keeps me accountable and working to a timeline.
And Carolyn, too, shares that being a BDM to a business is a partnership designed to keep track of progression, with goals firmly established from the outset
What I love about working with businesses like Jenny’s” begins Carolyn, “Is that we travel on a journey towards growing their business together. Being an external part of the team, they can call me any time with questions and the plans we put in place have real, measurable outcomes.
Growth Planning Workshop
Second to the welcome shoulder of a BDM, is access to InFocus’s range of seminars and workshops: in a sea of online webinars, choices can become clouded by not knowing what you need and when you need it.
Jenny was signposted to attend InFocus’s online Growth Planning sessions. Time away from business operations helped Jenny create a timeline of focussed actions to control the business’s rapid growth evidenced over recent years.
I’ve been running the business for six years now and with two directors on board and an increasing number of client orders, I felt that the business was at a point where I needed to make a plan of how to be in control of our growth for the future – we’ve been operating reactively over the past couple of years.
Grant award & future planning
Part of Jenny’s growth action plan was to be able to take on more client work and larger orders but to do this they needed to increase output and streamline current processes. The third strand to Jenny’s InFocus support package was receiving a grant.
The InFocus grant will enable us to invest in a new machine which will mechanise some of our manual processes, speeding up production, improving efficiencies.
Jenny has her sights firmly set on scaling up Cut By Beam. Through InFocus, she’ll work with coach, David Bone, to implement a new business structure and operating procedures which’ll involve a move to a bigger premises and the growth of her team
If your business is growing at pace and you want to keep a tighter control of the reins, our next InFocus Growth Planning session is just around the corner. Arrange a chat with a Business Development Manager about your next step by completing our short interactive form, telling us a bit about your business.