Owner, Meredith Emmanuel called me two years ago needing help. One of her key staff had unexpectedly quit. He managed a wide range of important functions in the business and his resignation triggered a mini crisis. Meredith was feeling overwhelmed and unsupported as she was the sole proprietor running a business with a team of subcontractors across the U.S and the U.K.
Meredith contracted Essentia Coaching to support her through this immediate challenge and work out a strategy to grow the business in a sustainable way
We initially conducted individual Fact Find Sessions with Meredith and four of her key sub contractors. This in-depth conversation covered all areas of the business and identified areas of strengths and weaknesses along with personal concerns from key stakeholders.
The immediate goals identified were:
- Create a business entity that supports succession planning. Meredith was planning to exit in seven years and wanted to bring in three of her key subcontractors as equity partners.
- To be able to retain and reward quality staff.
- Increase profitability.
Over the next 12 months we re-designed the business. EBComs was incorporated as a Limited Liability Company and Meredith bought in three highly-valued colleagues as working partners who earn a growing percentage of company ownership with every year of service.
Roles, responsibilities and accountability charts were created to ensure everyone was clear about their position. Meeting procedures were developed to ensure partner and team meetings were effective and productive.
A Vision Action Planner was created to focus the partners on seven, three and one year goals along with 90 day targets to achieve. We also identified Company Values, Target Market, Core Focus and a Marketing strategy.
Pricing and service packages were reviewed as it was apparent that EBComs was undercharging for their work. Budgets were developed and financial reporting practices implemented.
At the end of 12 months we had achieved all the agreed goals with the company doubling its revenue and 3 x profit. Meredith now had a partnership team to support her, her vision and her eventual exit from the business.
Year Two saw an explosion of new business and expansion of her global team to include more staff in Australia, Europe and the U.S. Their reputation was elevated with increasing ‘A-List talent’ being signed for PR services. The company again doubled its revenue with a significant increase in profit. Meredith even managed to take her first well-earned holiday in over seven years.
Besides the systems and structural work we did within the business that addressed many of the roadblocks, the real work has been the development of the leadership team. Cultivating self awareness, managing conflict, exploring new possibilities and fostering a culture of learning and growth is the ongoing work ahead. It is critical that the partners continue to develop their leadership skills – of themselves first and the company second to see the full potential of this business realised.
As Meredith said ‘Sandra has taken our business beyond the next level. She has a unique ability to both nurture and nudge. She knows how to play to a team’s strength without judgement, but with ongoing insight, inspiration and motivation.’
If you are experiencing similar challenges to those faced by Meredith and her team or are curious to know how Sandra could support you, contact her here.