Gerard and Rosemary Francis founded Lighthouse Personnel in late 2017. Gerard knew his passion was supporting people on their career journey but working in a traditional recruitment role had never appealed. Gerard and Rosey decided they could follow their passion, and change the reputation and culture of the recruitment sector by creating Lighthouse Personnel.
Built on core values of trust, transparency, reliability and talent, their team thrives on helping people be the best they can be by finding their ideal role.
Around two years after founding the business, the global pandemic hit.
Transformation, Development and Strategy
When the global pandemic hit, Lighthouse Personnel needed to change.
“I knew something had to change if we were to survive as a business”, explains Gerard. “Rosey and I were on furlough and business had ground to a halt. It doesn’t matter how experienced you are, at that stage, as a business owner, you need support.”
Gerard was introduced to Peter Basford by a close friend. Peter’s role in the business has evolved and developed, as the business has changed. The flexibility of the BGCN support offered is a great asset to a growing company.
Implementing Effective and Supportive Change
Initially, Gerard started working with BGCN to help implement a growth strategy. “I was struggling to leave work at work” explained Gerard. “The work-life balance that I was seeking by running my own business was working against me, not for me. We need to introduce good practice and strong procedures to enable me to leave work at work, and grow the business”.
Working alongside Lighthouse Personnel, Peter helped implement various improvements to the business including:
- Strategy guidance such as writing an effective business plan
- Structuring the business for growth and continual development
- Premises relocation
Growth and Support
The result of working with BGCN was that Lighthouse Personnel has experienced growth, has a clear five-year strategy and is thriving. Peter continues to support Gerard and the team by acting as a supportive ambassador, helping to win new clients, and being a director-level sounding board that Gerard, as the business owner and MD, needs.
Lighthouse Personnel has gone from strength to strength since starting to work with Peter. “Having a five-year plan for the business keeps us focused and we continue to grow,” explains Gerard. “Peter is an excellent coach. He has helped us implement various improvements to our business, provided strategy guidance, supported with staffing concerns and has been an ambassador for our company.”
Working with BGCN not only supports the business but also the business owner. Having peer support can make a big difference to the entrepreneur’s mental and physical health.
Gerard explains, “I now have a work/life balance, feel more supported in my role, and am better equipped to combat the day-to-day challenges of running a small business.”
Peter is there to ask the questions that need to be considered to find the right path forward. “Often the role of a line manager is to hold their team accountable and encourage them to be the best they can be. A business owner doesn’t have a line manager – and often no Board – and Peter fills that gap, and takes that role for me,” says Gerard.
All businesses experience some form of “crisis” along the way – big or small! Peter is there to provide support whatever the challenge and help to find the best solution. That may be introducing Gerard to people who can help, asking the right questions or just being a sounding board to discuss options.
Peter continues to work closely with the Lighthouse Personnel team. The flexible approach of BGCN means that his role and focus have now shifted from his initial input to supporting the five-year strategy and growth plan in place.
Gerard is confident that working with Peter is probably the best business decision he has made.
“Peter always gets the best out of me by asking the right questions at the right time. I can grow my business but also leave work at work to give me the family-work balance that I want. It’s been great,” says Gerard. “I’ll shout about BGCN until the cows come home!”