Wiltshire Printers – Hulbert and Woodall
“Nigel has made us all really positive”
Hulbert and Woodall was started in late 2009 by Hayley Woodall and Pete Hulbert. They are a Litho printers based near Swindon with 7 fulltime staff. For Hayley it’s her first directorship and although she understood about the practical requirements of PAYE, sales pipelines, employment contracts etc she felt a bit overwhelmed with it all. Hayley recognised that she could do with some help pulling it all together.
Hayley had tried coaching before with someone she found through Business Link but hadn’t really ‘clicked’ with them. “But when I met Nigel we just got on well, he is a really positive and happy person. Plus the structured approach that he discussed with me really made sense”
Hayley and Nigel now have fortnightly meetings to discuss the current business situation and finances. At each meeting they work out some clear objectives for Hayley. “Nigel is very good at pushing me out of my comfort zone, but in a controlled way, which I know really helps get things done. He gets me to go that little bit further, for example, we now send a chocolate with every order and paid invoice, it’s a small thing but it’s really well received, and we wouldn’t have done it without being encouraged by Nigel”
“I really like the structured approach that ActionCOACH uses and it manifests itself in a more structured business” For example, before working with Nigel, Hayley and the team didn’t have clear measurements in place for key performance indicators. “Now we have full visibility of all the key metrics and I can check them on a daily basis. In fact we’ve developed a dashboard that shows everyone in the company these metrics. This has proved really good at developing team spirit and we are now starting to understand the trends of the business and can plan for them”
The structured approach used by ActionCOACH is proving exactly what Hayley needed – “we have a clear 90 day plan and a 5 year plan which we work on at our fortnightly meetings and also at quarterly planning workshops run by Nigel and another ActionCOACH” But these plans are not just for the business, as Hayley says, “myself and Pete have our own personal plans and goals which really helps us visualise what we want and keeps us motivated”
- Hayley with her 90 day plan on the wall
The first six months of working with ActionCOACH have been focused on laying strong foundations for the business – “now we are beginning to see real payoff from these efforts and are building a profitable business” says Hayley.
Hayley and Nigel have been working together for 8 months now. “Now we have great foundations I am looking at growing sales and Nigel has been invaluable as I am not a natural sales person”. Nigel has helped Hayley to understand her customers better by tracking them all and using it to identify opportunities – “I have a matrix of our customers and can understand what they have bought already so we can look at what else we can sell to them, plus we know who is most valuable so we can focus our time properly”.
“Now we have sales targets and Nigel never lets us set easy targets, he always tries to push us to go a bit further. This has paid off, as we reached our target in November and January”
The numbers reflect the strong business they have built with £420,000 turnover in year 1 and a clear 12% profit “which is great for our first year of trading” says Hayley.
Cashflow is strengthening with each month, reducing the need for borrowing and allowing Hayley and Pete to start planning some time off – their first holiday for several years.
ActionCOACH’s influence hasn’t just been felt in the business, Hayley has found that personally she has grown – “the coaching has really given me confidence to move things forward and make things happen. I am more positive and calmer, less likely to explode, which everyone is pleased about!”
In conclusion Hayley says “the most important thing that ActionCOACH has brought to me and the business is the ability to plan for the future and visualise where we want to get to, we have these plans on the wall and seeing them every day inspires us to get things done. Nigel has easily paid for himself and always brings a smile with him. We’ll definitely be working with him for a good while yet”.