Five years ago, Peter Basford left Lloyds Bank after a successful 33-year career. Fast forward to the present, and Peter is the go-to man for business owners and entrepreneurs. With a not-so-little black book of contacts, there seems to be no one Peter can’t introduce you to. If he can’t provide the skills or answer you are looking for, he will know someone who can.
Peter’s vision and motivation
When Peter knew his time at Lloyds was drawing to an end, he started to consider what the next stage in his journey would look like. He knew he wanted more than golf and gardening!
He started with three aims – he wanted to do something fun, that he was good at, and that would add value. He knew after being part of a team for his whole career, he wanted to be part of something bigger than just himself.
He had always coached colleagues and started to volunteer his time to support two local businesses. And Peter was hooked!
He reached out to Nigel Sandbrook, who had also left Lloyds a couple of years earlier, and the rest, they say, is history! BGCN was created.
Ethos of BGCN
Business Growth Coaches Network is a network of sector specialists and experts, whose skills in coaching are more likely to be from experience rather than a formal qualification. A network of individuals that all share Peter’s vision and ethos.
“I started to recognise there were fantastic coaching options out there but none were doing what I wanted to do,” explained Peter. “I wanted a way for small businesses to receive high-quality coaching, bespoke to their needs, at a reasonable price. A low cost-high value coaching option making it affordable and accessible to all.”
Peter has already created a legacy. His work has made a difference to many businesses, which continue to grow and thrive. Peter’s recommendations and testimonials rave about the difference that working with Peter has had on their business, and them as an individual.
“My client is perhaps a solo entrepreneur who has grown a business and now has a team but needs a peer to talk things through with. Someone to help them drive their business forward whilst they gain confidence and grow as an individual” explains Peter. “We are now helping start-ups, or even people with an idea who have not yet got to the start-up stage, and that is very exciting.”
Passion to succeed
Peter’s driving passion is helping businesses succeed. Whether a start-up or an established business, Peter genuinely has fun supporting entrepreneurs to develop and grow. With various Non-Exec Director positions and a charity patron position, Peter is certainly kept busy.
“My original vision was to have 50 plus coaches in the network, each working with ten clients,” reflects Peter. “What has happened over the past five years, is BGCN has worked with around 2,000 clients through big tender services, such as the Digital Advice Service, and Start, Build, Grow, as well as our 1-2-1 core business coaching services. We now have 30 coaches and are looking to increase that further. Our business plan has evolved and diversified in response to the market.”
Peter describes every day with BGCN as a school day. “After five years, every day is still exciting and fresh. Our diversity of clients means no two days are the same,” explains Peter. “I could be working with a mental health charity, a coffee retailer and a dog daycare company all on the same day. I love the variety and learning about different businesses, whilst I get to add value and share my experiences to help.”
A Business Development Expert
Peter has a reputation for connecting people. For not only sharing his knowledge and expertise but sharing his network of “useful” people for every business owner and entrepreneur.
Peter is a coach and mentor, bringing peer support to business owners and directors.
“I am particularly passionate about leadership, employee engagement and helping to create sustainable marketing strategies”, explains Peter.
“For BGCN this is a very exciting time. We are introducing an online programme for start-ups who may not yet be ready to engage with 1-2-1 coaching. I’m particularly interested in how we can support female entrepreneurs with a bespoke service, and we are looking at extending nationally, and perhaps internationally,” says Peter.
What more would you expect from a Business Development Expert? 🎉