After 10 years of running aask us Ltd, I reached a “light bulb” moment recently, and realised that sometimes it is more productive to allocate time and really drill down on a situation to get the right result.
So how did this moment arrive, and who should I thank?
Well it was actually down to the Government, which also gave aask us our first taste of “real” funding and support in 10 years!
UKTI is set up to offer businesses practical help in increasing their exports. Part of the process is a compulsory 2 day workshop, which in itself nearly put me off, but the nice UKTI chap said it was essential, so off I went to the “winning and delivering business overseas” course (at least it was free food and an overnight stay as compensation I thought).
The course is a mixture of practical workshops, lectures and discussions which drill down into what each business has to offer, both as a product and service. Alongside that were 12 or so other participants from a wide variety of backgrounds, from the physical; dog collars, pottery and security, to the on-line world of cyber crime, consultancy and energy management. This gave us all a time to discuss our businesses, our management roles and how we work things out, with a range of diverse and interesting people.
The 2 days were an excellent way to reflect on how I look at the business, not just for exporting, but also in the general way in which it is run. I managed to come to a few conclusions that will really help shape the company over the coming weeks, months and years, something that during a busy day to day work schedule I have never really had chance to focus on in great detail.