To give you a flavour of what our clients say about the business coaching, business mentoring and stress management services provided by Liz Makin we have included here a selection of our client testimonials:
"Liz provided so much more that just the traditional business mentoring and I can't thank her enough for having such a positive impact on my business. In less than one year we completely changed the structure of my business, redesigned my service portfolio and expanded the client base significantly. I never expected to achieve so much in such a short space of time. Liz has real business insight and her own commercial experience enables her to really get involved and give practical help. As a result, I have had a very profitable year!"
"Liz is a great listener and can distil the many and often complex issues facing an individual - these might be things that are not immediately obvious. Rather than solve the problems for the individual Liz has a unique skill to help coach the person concerned to their own solution."
"I have worked with Liz over a period of two years during which time I have been faced with many business challenges, including rapid growth, a move to new premises, restructuring and how to build value into the business for a potential sale in the future.
Liz's mentoring support during this period and her extensive business knowledge and experience has helped me to meet these challenges and to develop a successful business, as well as achieving a better work/life balance."
"When I first came to Liz for help my one-man business was in a mess. I was under-achieving personally and financially, was unfocused and was wasting money by putting time and effort into projects that were not viable. I was depressed and my stress was effecting my professional and family life and I could not see how to sort out the mess.
Liz has helped me to understand what is important, to plan better, to focus on client need, and to balance work and family life. I have now turned things around personally and financially and am balancing work and family life well and am much happier as a result.
I am pleased to recommend Liz's professional and highly personable mentoring services."
"We often know we should be doing something, we often know that we need to change something, but we often prevaricate because we are too busy with the day to day or unsure of the best solution.
A session with Liz acts as a real catalyst - clarifying your ideas, often finding new solutions and above all getting you set to get on and do it."
"I first used coaching during a highly stressful time when there was a huge amount going on alongside trying to run the day to day business. I found the coaching enormously useful in coping with the business and emotional stresses of the situation I was in.
Liz helped me rationalise the position in a calm and professional manner and also to give me confidence when times were hard. The key to the coaching was around building and sustaining my self-confidence and in not giving up when things seemed bad.
I would urge anyone faced with a demanding or stressful time where it can at times be difficult to see ‛the wood for the trees‛ to seriously consider coaching as a way to better perform both personally and for the business."
"Liz's mentoring has been of great help to me in the past 12 months. She has helped me see through the everyday clutter and focus on the issues that matter to the business and to me personally. I looked forward to our sessions and these only came to an end when I had to join an in-house corporate programme designed to deliver similar objectives. If that proves unsuccessful then I would not hesitate to re-commence with Liz."
"As a small business owner put into a challenging environment Liz has been a great support over the last two years in getting me to focus on the right areas and helped me turn the business around. There is still more work to do, but I would not have got this far without her help. My confidence has also grown helping me to feel much more in control about where the business and more importantly where I am going."
"It was been a pleasure to work with Liz and I would not hesitate to recommend her for any coaching requirements we have within our Company in the future, I feel I have benefited from Liz's help & support and I wish her continued success."
"I found my sessions with Liz extremely helpful to put clarity and order to my thoughts and actions regarding the future direction I could take with my business. Liz's warm, personable style and her objectivity mean she is a great sounding board for ideas and concerns - invaluable for a small business owner. She had some very useful and thought provoking insights which helped me find the impetus to move my business forward significantly."
"I have worked with Liz over the last three years and she has helped me to run my business more efficiently and with less stress.
Running a small business can at times be very lonely, you can only discuss certain elements with your staff. It has been a great benefit for me to be able to discuss issues with somebody who is completely objective and emotionally detached from the business.
Liz's approach is to concentrate your efforts on those issues which are causing you the most angst. She helps you create a series of small steps which are easily manageable and achievable. When you look back on your progress, those small steps add up to big improvements.
I would thoroughly recommend Liz if you want to improve the running of your business and help improve your work/life balance."
"With Liz's support and fabulous mentoring I am now in a position to enjoy and grow my business. Thank you Liz for helping me, as an employer and business owner, to overcome difficult times and regain my positivity and enthusiasm for my business once again. Being a business owner is tough and can be a lonely experience but Liz is there to support me whenever I need."
"My first year of trading was very challenging as I learned many different aspects about running a business. The sessions I had with Liz were hugely beneficial. Together we worked through several aspects of my business and I gained a valuable insight into what my business style should be. With this understanding I had the confidence in myself and the business, to push the business forward. Liz is very supportive and a good listener. If you have any business issues you need to discuss or work through I highly recommend Liz as a source of support and guidance."
"Liz was very aware of our business when she came to the first meeting and had clearly done a considerable amount of background research. Sessions with her were extremely productive. She handled issues sensitively and with professionalism.
She is very thorough in following up between meetings and was full of practical ideas for resolving issues in our business when we were going through a particularly difficult time.
We would recommend her services to other small businesses without hesitation."
"Liz has been my mentor for three years and I always look forward to meeting with her.
Her probing style of coaching forces me to think through issues I might otherwise gloss over or miss completely. Moreover, she gives me highly intelligent and knowledgeable feedback on a wide range of subjects, from staff management to funding via operations and marketing.
Liz has helped me both at strategic and practical levels and her input has supported the growth of my business.
Many thanks Liz!"
"Over the last year Liz's mentoring has been a sounding board for the growth of my business. I was able to discuss and hone all my ideas and methodically apply each one in a strategic way. Liz has a real understanding of what small businesses face and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend her services."
"Working in a service business, it is often hard to give our own business the same kind of attention as our clients. Our sessions with Liz really helped us to focus on our own business needs, taking us away from working 'in' the business to working 'on' the business. We have now put in processes to make sure the leadership meet regularly to discuss priorities and plan short, medium and long term objectives."
"Within the month after my first session with Liz, we invoiced out a much higher level - just after my first session! Since then the mentoring has been extremely valuable from a business and personal point of view."
"Liz worked with me over a two and a half year period when I moved from a senior position in a large corporate organisation to working in my own business as a Recruitment Consultant. She supported me in addressing all the main business and personal issues that arose at the time of the most significant change in my working life.
Liz has a clear understanding of all aspects of setting up and running a small business and consistently helped me to focus up on the most important issues at the time as well as maintaining a drive to achieve the main personal and business goals. I looked forward to the regular reviews as it was an opportunity to bounce ideas around and put the various issues and pressures affecting the business in to context and perspective
The support and input from Liz proved to be a significant factor in the successful establishment of my operation."
"Liz has been a great sounding board for business ideas over the last year, her input has really helped the business to grow."
"I recently started a new business venture, and I recognised that I had reached a stage where I knew what I needed to do - but there was so much, I was not focussing on what was important. I also recognised I would benefit from coaching, but having been a business coach myself, I knew that I needed a good one! I had known Liz for some while, and I felt that she would coach me in a way that I would coach others, and that her style would be suited to my needs.
Liz totally satisfied my requirements, and within just two sessions, I had gained much more clarity, and was able to prioritise and focus on the key issues to get my business growth on track. One major element of Liz's work with me was that she listened to what I needed, and provided a completely customised approach to my problems, rather than just feeding me generic theories!
I would recommend Liz as a coach to anyone seeking clarity and a way forward, to help prioritise and focus on what is important."
"Somehow Liz enabled me to get my thoughts into a coherent framework and go out the door ready to take action - truly a catalyst for change."
"Liz was my business mentor during a very challenging year. The business was growing very rapidly and I was struggling to cope with the many different issues that arose (including staffing, communication, operations, productivity, sales and marketing, office space, planning, leadership and stress management).
Liz provided excellent support throughout this period, acting as a sounding board for me. I was able to discuss and explore the business challenges with her and find good solutions to the issues. Her help enabled me to move my business forward and put the foundations in place for further business growth. Her business knowledge and experience is extensive and she is a very good listener."
"Liz has helped me with my business for the last 12 months and we have dealt with many issues including a fire, shop closures, a move to a big new store and the stresses and strains of running your own business. I have tried to make the most out of every meeting and I think during the time we have covered almost every topic including staff appraisals, motivation, cost control and PR, to name a few.
Without doubt Liz has been a huge support to me, her business knowledge has helped me make better decisions and her advice on how to handle stress was especially helpful, for what has been a very stressful period of my life. It is good to know that I am able to use her services in the future if I find the need. Thanks Liz."
"I can highly recommend Liz, she kept us on track and helped us to think out of the box. It was great to be able to vocalise our vision. Thanks Liz."
"Liz helped us with quite a few items over the course of the year, some of the items I would like to mention:
- With any small business, there are always difficult times. What Liz was very good at doing was saying, "Hey you are not alone...but focus on what has got you here and how that is different from your competition." By doing this small piece of work, it helped us focus on our business and items we could control.
- Schedule of marketing - we put together a little matrix of when we would market what products, how we would market them and what customers to send them to. Again, by not panicking we were able to start at the top and send product information to prospected customers.
- Working with Liz, we never pushed the panic button, she always looked at issues from the "outside" and was always able to find a solution, sometimes the solution was a walk away, but this too is a solution.
- Finding new customers from our current customer base etc. etc.
Liz has many years in the real world of business, and understands the stress of running your own business and how that can impact on your life, how to manage time etc. I would recommend working with Liz, as she will be a great insight to anyone's business. Thank you very much for your time."
"Liz Makin has had a significant impact on the way I look at myself, my business and the world in general. Her newsletters are invaluable and have become a treasure house of information and intelligence for me - most importantly they merit regular re-reading and reassessment.
The personal contact I have had with Liz has been of equal value. The problems I had were solved with logic, rationality and understanding.
I would not hesitate to use her services in the future."
"As a result of the coaching I received from Liz I have become more focused and organised, enabling me to achieve more in less time. I am more positive and confident, gaining greater personal satisfaction from working towards more stretching goals."
"Liz Makin has been my business mentor over the last year under the Mentoring for All programme. During this time I was faced with some major business decisions, including an office move, closing down a branch office, staffing issues, purchasing a new practice and marketing my business in a new geographic area.
Through Liz's direction, planning and just down to earth listening I was able to tackle each problem as it came up. Liz is also a Chartered Accountant and has invaluable experience and knowledge in business issues which I was lucky enough to have the benefit of. This was to become one of the busiest years of my career, and frankly without her help, advice and guidance I think I would have found it a struggle on my own.
I am continuing to use Liz's mentoring services for the foreseeable future."
"Thank you so much for giving up your time to advise and guide me over the last year. My meetings and phone sessions with you have been very helpful in both helping and encouraging me, as well as challenging my thoughts and opinions where they needed to be! You've been brilliant and I hope your work as a mentor continues to go from strength to strength."
"Liz Makin was assigned as my business mentor through the Mentoring for All scheme via Business Link. I currently own two long established companies. I had just successfully completing a four year business plan that involved expanding these businesses via purchasing and converting two freehold properties. Once this was completed, I found myself at a loose end with no further major projects to undertake. I did not expect that my day to day workload from that point on would feel so menial and unfulfilling, hence leading to frustration and confusion regarding coming to what I considered to be a dead end.
My 10 sessions with Liz enabled me to discuss at length and in depth the specific areas of concern each time and agree actions that could be taken to move forward. I found Liz very easy to be honest and open with, which enabled me to talk things through and consequently come to well thought out conclusions. I would recommend Liz to anyone needing professional business guidance and support from a knowledgeable and informed outsider."
"Liz is both practical and wise. Her personal success in balancing a challenging career with a young family was massively helpful experience to draw on. She's been extremely helpful in helping me shape my goals and priorities."
"I have been on the mentoring programme for about a year, at first I was sceptical as to whether it would be of any benefit, however after a few months I found the process useful, as it gave me the opportunity to focus my thoughts for a few hours every month and plan for the following month. This I found laid the foundation for the following month."
"Liz helped me to think through several issues in starting up my business, and always helped me look for new ideas and positive solutions."
"Liz provides an excellent coaching service. Her coaching, by asking the right questions, makes you think about possible solutions for business challenges. She is a great person to speak to and likes helping and supporting people."
"Liz is both a volunteer business mentor working with our start-up businesses and a business mentor for Mentoring For All which is for established businesses across the East Midlands.
The business owners that she has mentored found real benefit from their time with Liz, she helped them focus and became a real sounding board for them."
Mentoring Manager, Nottinghamshire Business Venture
"I was made redundant in December 2008, my confidence was low and I'd reached a point where I could no longer clearly see what skills I had. I was unsure about what I wanted to do next, but had often wondered about working for myself. I was able to see Liz using a voucher scheme from Business Link. In one two hour session she was able to help me identify a clear list of things that I do and don't want out of my life and my work. Liz also helped me to identify where my strengths and skills lie so that I can make better, more informed choices. Her advice was invaluable and whatever career choice I make next, I know it will be a better one as a result of our very focused session."
Personal Client considering starting a business
"With practical support and encouragement, Liz has helped me change my way of looking at life. Over the past few months, I have become far more confident, independent and self-assured. In our meetings, I look forward to setting goals for my future- and achieving them."