“We saw over 100% increase in profits between 2015-2017”
This month we ask Dynamic Medical Managing Director Andrew Edwards about their experience of working with Thompson Training.
Dynamic Medical Logistics is the UK’s leading distribution specialist operating within the medical sector. Established in 1999, the organisation combines distribution of crucial medical equipment with superior service, delivered by highly trained Hospital Logistics Specialists. In February 2015, they partnered with Thompson Training to undertake business coaching.
What made you decide to start using a business coach?
Like any SME business, we were looking to continually improve and grow as an organisation. We had actually worked with 3 business coaches previously, but hadn’t quite seen the results we were hoping for. When I connected with Gilly, her action-orientated approach to delivering change set her apart from the rest. We began working together in February 2015.
What challenges were you facing within your business?
To be honest, we weren’t completely aware of what our challenges were. Sometimes, it takes a third party to look objectively at your business and make you think about it differently. Gilly asked the right questions – this enabled us to dig a little deeper into what was working well for us, and what our weaknesses were.
As a result, we identified that some of our existing members of staff weren’t the right fit for what we were looking to achieve. Our internal communication needed improvement, and we had no formal sales plan at all. We were also using a third-party marketing company to produce our major content and literature; for us, it was the status quo and we thought nothing of it. But it was an approach Gilly challenged.
What did Thompson Training do for you?
After working with us to identify areas for improvement, Gilly instilled the confidence I needed to eject poor performers from the business and redraw the management structure.
We also emulated Gilly’s approach and introduced a culture of action with much better communication. This meant a move from zero management to weekly meetings, with a set agenda, detailed note taking and follow-up. Now, we have clear and defined lines of communication and accountability between all departments.
We also went from giving zero thought to performance management, to drawing up quarterly 1:1s with set goals and KPIs, all aligned to the company’s strategic long-term goals.
Gilly introduced a whole new way of methodically looking at our sales targets and how to achieve them. By breaking down the numbers and working backwards, we were able to create a solid sales plan. But she didn’t stop there; she then sat in with a team member and worked with her to put our plan into action. Gilly helped ensure she was saying the right things, and stopped her procrastinating. In fact, one of the main things Gilly taught us has become a mantra for sales: pick up the phone!
Has it all been plain sailing?
Like any business, we’ve had our challenges and stumbling blocks. We lose customers and staff, or perhaps don’t realise our targets or goals. One of the major benefits of working with Gilly is the sense of partnership. It can be lonely at the top of a business; with a business coach, you can communicate and share concerns, and get objective insights or advice from someone who understands.
What benefits have you seen to your business since undertaking business coaching?
Gilly was a major catalyst for change for us, and a significant part of what the business has achieved. We’ve learnt her methods and approach, and now integrate that into how we operate day-to-day. We saw over 100% increase in profits between 2015-2017, with our turnover increasing from £2 million to £2.7million. Not only are we generating more profit, but we’re also working smarter.
Would you recommend Thompson Training as a business coaching partner?
Absolutely. Gilly’s offering is differentiated from others by being action-orientated: this isn’t about sitting in meeting rooms brainstorming or chatting about strategy. She is a hands-on and energetic partner who will grab you by the scruff of the neck, shake you into action, and deliver real tangible change. Every action has a date or deadline, a person accountable. Her approach works – and it’s now a foundational part of how we operate.
After working with Gilly for the past three years, our professional relationship has evolved. We’ve moved from directive teaching to a more strategic and supporting role. It doesn’t stop being valuable; we operate as a true partnership to get the business moving forward.
What advice would you give to other small businesses considering using a business coach?
Do it! There is lots of funding and grants available, particularly for smaller businesses, so be sure to see what support you can get. Finding the right coach will more than deliver a return on investment.
Still not sure where to start with your business plan? Join us for a 1 day workshop and create your 2018 Business Plan in a day on 30th of January. You can book your place on Eventbrite here.