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Dave Gammon is coaching small firms to think big
DAVE Gammon from ACTION-coach is on a mission to give Basingstoke’s small businesses a real boost to succeed.
The one-time Orange director of finance is keen to offers his services – but only to those who want to listen and learn.
“I’ve had a bit of a colourful career, and I’ve been involved in pretty much every aspect of business at some level,” said Dave, who has worked for the likes of British Gas, Energise, Ernst & Young, Grand Metropolitan and Tesco.
“I’ve sold, marketed, I’ve run large teams of people, and I have been involved in a lot of the financial side of business. I suppose I would be termed as a Jack of all trades,” said Dave.
Dave likes to describe himself as a generalist, and he comes with an abundance of energy and enthusiasm.
“I find that when I’m coaching, I can draw heavily from the big companies I’ve worked for to help small businesses.
“Quite often people will say, ‘Dave you’ve had all the big corporate jobs, but that has nothing to do with a small business’. But the two are identical – there is no difference.The fundamental disciplines I show people are the same with any business.”
When Dave, who had been managing a team of 450 staff for mobile phone giant Orange, decided it was time to work for himself, he had a number of ideas on the go, including opening a wine bar.
However, an encounter with a regional manager from ACTIONcoach at a business exhibition set Dave off in a new direction.
“Within two minutes, I knew that was what I am going to do,” recalled Dave, who forked out a hefty sum to set up as an ACTIONcoach franchise. “I suddenly realised how much experience I could bring to bear to help these small companies.”
Now based at Worting House, he has no regrets, and he has a good range of clients, from the likes of Gary Livingstone, managing director of award-winning engineering manufacturer LG Motion, to Top of the Town restaurateur David Wyatt, from The Lime Leaf.
Gary said: “The breadth of Dave’s business experience is excellent – he’s like our non-executive director – just a really experienced and reassuring person to have on your side.”
Dave said some small businesses may not be equipped with the skills and knowledge that some larger companies take for granted.
Dave said: “In fact, one of the most fundamental things we do is to get businesses to prepare a 90-day plan, and even that process itself sets them to grow.”
Many people he comes across say they are working flat out and misunderstand that that is not necessarily a good thing, especially if it means they are focusing on things they can delegate to others.
Dave said: “What I love about working with small businesses is that we decide what they are going to do, and they rapidly go ahead and implement it and then start to see the change almost immediately. I get a massive buzz out of that.”