Dan Barker interviews inspiring business people and entrepreneurs within the three counties of Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire.
We hear their stories, how they started running their own business, as well as the successes, failures and lessons learnt along the way.
The aim of the podcast is to inspire others, at the same as connecting more people within this great region of the UK.
As a photographer and video producer, Dan gets to meet many different business owners in the area. This is his chance to find out more about the people behind them, what made them choose to 'go it alone' and what they've learnt from their experiences.
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You'll find all the episodes and show notes here:
Growing A Business With Great Care - Ben Hughes
Ben Hughes took over a business that his Mother stated in the late '90's, running guardianship for students from overseas coming to study in the UK.
He's based in Malvern, Worcestershire, and looks after students up and down the country, studying at some of the most prestigious educational institutions.
Surround Yourself WIth Great People - Sue Vaughan
Sue Vaughan is from a family of Herefordshire cider makers, who’ve been honing their craft for 8 generations.
The family farm has diversified in more recent years to include hop fields and vines.
The cider company, Celtic Marches’ now have a sister company, Marches Bottling and Packaging, which is less than 5 miles away, helping maintain their goal to reduce their environmental impact.
Here the ciders are packaged and other producers in the drinks industry utilise contract packaging and laboratory services.
The vines are used to produce wine, under the name of Radlow Hundred, described as a bold range of wines, each with a nod to the much-loved local area.
MARCHES BOTTLING and PACKAGING
Mindset To Scale - Alice Cooke
Alice Cooke is a copywriter who’s recently moved back to Herefordshire and is about to scale her copywriting business.
She’s been a journalist for a little over ten years, for titles including Country Life, Sussex Life, Utility Week and Bakery Business.
Having been asked to write for friends and family over the years, she found she both enjoyed the work and that it was making a real difference to people, businesses and (crucially) to profits.
Having seen increases in profit margins by up to 30% for her clients as a result of her work, she’s now ready to scale her business and bring her services to more people.
Successfully Enjoying Business And Life - Lee Martin
He runs multiple businesses, and from what I’ve seen – does an incredible job of it, clearly enjoying what he does and inspiring those around him.
Having started out with a Subway store in Cheltenham, he quickly grew to two stores, but found having a franchise required too much of a regimented formula. He learnt a lot and decided to start his own company, Pig on the Hill, an outdoor catering company – pigonthehill.net
As well as running this and 4 pubs in the area, he also runs the festival, Lakefest - a 15,000 capacity, 4 day event – with headliners this year including Tom Jones and Razorlight– lakesfest.co.uk
He’s an incredibly community minded businessman, running charity events, encouraging up and coming musicians, amongst other things.
In-work and future plans include a Chinese Restaurant in Cheltenham, a London Taxi to transport locals around the Bredon, Kemerton, Beckford areas, as well as keeping his Cheltenham Football passion going by taking on the official catering at the club!
I have a feeling I’ve only scratched the surface in terms of what he gets up to and I’m excited to find out more.
We also have an with us his good friend and investor in one of his businesses, Ross Forno.
Presenting New Beginnings - Rory McAllister
Rory McAllister has a background in radio and television, mainly working for the BBC as a presenter, sports commentator and newsreader.
His CV includes working on Strictly Come Dancing and The One Show – to name but a few.
He also runs his own live theatre event, ‘Cinema In Symphony’
And he’s the VIP matchday host at Worcester Warriors.
More recently, in November 2018, he started a video production company, with his wife, and has seen steady growth since, working with clients ranging from multi-national to local businesses in Worcester.
Leading A Happy And Productive Team - James Syree
James Syree is CEO of a large firm of chartered accountants based in Worcestershire.
Since being appointed as CEO in 2018, he’s championed culture change to encourage transparency, collaboration, and an “employee voice”.
He also believes in surrounding himself with teammates who can (in his words) “do things better than he can”.
He acts for a range of clients, from start-ups to large international corporates and has a particular passion for the tech sector which has led to embracing technology internally and also the launch of the firm’s digital transformation department earlier this year.
Excellent in Branding and Thinking Creatively!
I’m really grateful for this podcast in helping to think more out of the box and creatively. Thank you, Dan!