Growth & Customers

Sage Summit mentors share their top advice for entrepreneurs

What happens when you gather together thousands of budding entrepreneurs and business owners plus some of the world’s leading business mentors, advisors and coaches?

You get the Mentor Lounge: a day of one-to-one sessions, mentoring and advice at the Sage Summit in London’s ExCel on 6 April 2017.

Learn from the mentors

Here, we bring the best of the Mentor Lounge to you. We asked our mentors to share their top piece of advice for anyone looking to start – or grow – their business. From focusing on your strengths, to doing what you love – here are their very best nuggets of advice to help you take your next step.

Francesca Geens, Digital Dragonfly

Keep reading, learning, asking questions, talking to other business owners and remember you aren’t supposed to do it all by yourself!  @f_dragonfly

Mark Deakin, Microsoft

Make sure you do what you love. It’s going to be a tough few years getting your business off the ground. @markdeakin

Taravat Taher-Zadeh, T&T Consulting

Focus on your core skills, the services or products you are selling, and seek the appropriate support, business tools, advice, skills-sets etc. Try to resist the temptation that you can do all or most things yourself – the opportunity cost to building your business could be greater than you think.

There are ways and means of securing support without having to spend much money (if at all in some cases), especially in the crucial first couple of years. It’s perfectly common to feel anxious, isolated and apprehensive; your passion, resilience and self-belief will see you through the challenging times – but have that plan! @ttcttz

Jennifer Brooks, Capability Jane Recruitment

Have confidence, learn from your mistakes and above all, keep going!

Linda Baldwin, Capability Jane Recruitment

Recognise your areas of strengths and quickly bring people in to your business who can plug any gaps and support your weaker areas. Surround yourself with people who believe in your product or service as much as you do, but who are prepared to challenge you and be challenged.

Janet Mohapi-Banks, Success Coach and Mentor

If any of your results aren’t what you had hoped for, ask yourself “why?” five times to identify the root cause. Concentrating on the results without identifying and correcting the actions that were taken to get there, won’t improve them.

The only way to get the results you want is by making sure that all the actions taken along the way are working towards the desired outcome.@jmohapibanksuk

Amanda Cullen, Business Coach

Play to your strengths and spend most of your time here rather than focusing on your weaknesses. If necessary and possible, get someone else to do the things you’re weak at. @AmandaCcoach

Tina Boden, The Tiny TroubleShooter

Constantly build your crowd, on and offline. People you can sell to, people that will promote you and people that can advise and support you on a journey that’s not always easy. @MicroBizGirl

Adnan Zaheer, PwC

Build the right team. Understand your numbers. Focus on marketing strategy and execution. Think through your exit strategy. “We may stumble and fall but shall rise again; it should be enough if we did not run away from the battle.” – Mahatma Ghandi. @adnzaheer