The story so far...
Our Senior Advisers, Robert and Doug, established their professional connection while working for a large, multi-national corporate.
From different areas of the business, they found themselves collaborating on a project that created great outcomes for the organisation. That experience also proved to be the catalyst for what was to come. Robert and Doug realised the complementary nature of their skills and a unique approach to creating value through sustainable growth driven by purpose meant they could deliver similar results for other businesses.
Fast forward a few years, and together at GrowthCatalyst, they help businesses create the foundation for sustainable growth.
“Everyone is talking at me; I don’t hear a word they’re saying” was sung by Harry Nilsson many years ago. Sadly though, I’ve also heard this said (in various ways) by many business owners and leaders I’ve met over the years. They often tell me they have people in their network who talk to them, but the message doesn’t always seem to resonate or make a positive impact on them and their businesses.
We all communicate in different ways and styles. The challenge is asking the right questions that encourage business owners to share their issues and worries while actively listening to and understanding their responses. This is a skill I’ve developed throughout my career, and as a firm believer in continuous improvement, I always ask myself – “am I asking the right questions”? I’ll do this until the day I die.
Over a long and successful career in financial services, dealing with clients across many industries and of varying sizes, I’ve gained a deep understanding of what differentiates a great business from a simply good one. My major discovery? The differentiators are agnostic - they apply to all businesses that have achieved significant and sustained growth.
I’ve observed that the two common denominators in successful businesses are:
1) their owners and leaders are focused on continuous improvement, applying appropriate strategic thinking to the achievement of sustainable growth outcomes and
2) it’s their mindset that holds the key to their success. Too often, they are told what to do rather than having someone shape their thinking. My experience tells me they want to be influenced rather than motivated by the people they listen to.
This has led me to understand the superpower these businesses have: the clarity of their business purpose – the reason the business exists beyond generating revenue and profit. This clarity is the foundation that provides these businesses with the decision-making framework that underpins sustainable growth.
My passion is working with business owners and leaders with inquisitive growth mindsets and sharing my expertise to help these businesses achieve sustainable growth. It’s fulfilling to have conversations with them to leverage their mindset to achieve and exceed their visions for their businesses – they hear the words I am saying to them!
These conversations can be challenging, but the results for these businesses lead to greater client and employee engagement which contributes to improvements in their financial outcomes.
Feel free to talk with me to activate your business's superpower!
In the words of David Byrne of Talking Heads fame…"well, how did I get here?”
It’s fair to say that professionally, I’ve always been a little rebellious. I know this because, from the early days, performance reviews would mention it. Not in so many words, maybe, but the intent was there. “Doug’s favourite question is “Why”?” was the usual giveaway.
That said, I managed to carve out a corporate career that most would describe as successful. I worked for some fantastic businesses and leaders (and some, frankly, not so great) and built talented and committed teams that produced brilliant outcomes. Of all that, I feel quite proud.
I did all that for a lot of years. And, for the most part, enjoyed the experience.
Eventually, I was invited into the world of advising SMEs on growth strategies. I decided to give it a go, figuring that my naturally rebellious nature and favourite question would be significant assets. Turns out I was right because, without any hesitation, I can say it was the best (and smartest) career choice I ever made.
Translating “big business ideas” without the bureaucracy that generally went with them into the SME world is incredibly rewarding. It's easy to see the benefits to clients of the advice I deliver. Some of those benefits are immediate, others of a longer-term nature. But all are meaningful to the owners and other stakeholders in the business.
As part of my ongoing development as an adviser to SMEs, I became and remain a student of business purpose. I learned that purpose is the essence of a business and is an extraordinarily powerful force in creating long-term sustainable business growth and value.
I also realised that without exception, the very best of the businesses I’d worked in over the years were, in fact, purpose-driven…it just wasn’t the language used at the time. And that those businesses deliberately developed their vision, strategy, and business plans to be driven by their purpose.
So that’s how I got here.
I now get my professional kicks from working with SMEs to help them not just to grow but to grow in a purpose-driven way aimed at creating longer-term sustainable growth.
It’s challenging work and incredibly rewarding. But it’s most rewarding for clients. They enjoy greater clarity around decision-making, more engaged clients and employees and, ultimately, improved financial outcomes.
If you can tick all those boxes, you don’t need me or GrowthCatalyst.
If you can’t?
Then we should talk…just as long as you don’t mind a little rebelliousness and me asking “why” a lot.