Meet the mentor helping North West business leaders through the economic crisis

  • Sunday, November 20, 2022
  • Posted By GM Leadership Hive

It's no secret that our economy is currently facing an extremely challenging time, leaving people everywhere with the difficult task of figuring out how best to navigate the cost of living crisis. And it's not just domestic households that are feeling the pinch, the crisis has also increased the cost of doing business, which has introduced serious challenges for company owners and leaders all over the region.

GC Business Growth Hub, specifically, Greater Manchester Leadership Hive - which is a free recourse platform that helps business leaders to grow, develop and learn - is here to help. Aiming to platform the best leadership and management support from across the region, the Greater Manchester Leadership Hive offers a range of fully funded supportive programmes to offer the essential tools needed to run any firm as effectively as possible.

From mentoring services to workforce development, as well as leadership and executive development programmes Greater Manchester Leadership Hive provides practical advice to help company leaders navigate challenges and unlock business growth potential.

To mark national mentoring day on Thursday October 27, the Greater Manchester Leadership Hive is thrilled to be providing a valuable mentorship service itself, iMentor. The service works by matching service users who are looking for business guidance, with an experienced mentor who is able to provide useful knowledge and help to apply actionable strategies. 

Imentor CMYK 01 (1)

The long term benefits of which include business growth, increased knowledge, support and networking. To begin your fully funded mentoring journey, click here, at no cost.

To find out more about the impact of the mentorship programme, we spoke with Greater Manchester Leadership Hive iMentor, Laura Anne Harvey, 32 from Hawarden in North Wales. As the company director of Laura Anne Hospitality Consultant Ltd, where she provides hospitality consultancy and business coaching services, Laura is able to offer a whole host of great advice to her mentees.

Laura's passion for mentoring and business lead to her being headhunted for the role of iMentor, she said: "I got approached by iMentor in the summer via a recommendation by someone else on the program as a mentor. I do mentorship and coaching in my own business, it is something I am passionate about and enjoy.

"I believe we can all practice continuous personal development and learn something from others and that everyone should always be open to learning new things. If I can help someone to develop, save money or prevent them making mistakes based on my own experience, I think the experiences should be shared."

Laura Anne Harvey, Greater Manchester Leadership Hive Mentor

"I also find it very rewarding when you see the positive impact you can have on a person or a company. I also use a mentor for my own business, so I see the benefits to mentorship."

Since joining the the Hive mentorship programme a couple of months ago, Laura has already been matched with two company directors after their profiles matched the sort of guidance that she is able to provide.

Laura explained how the programme works, she said: "You are sent matches based on your experience and knowledge. You have the opportunity to review the mentees profile to see if this is a business and person you can help based on your own experience. If you agree to work together, you are introduced by the Leadership Hive team.

"You make contact and arrange an initial call to ensure you are the right fit for each other before committing to the programme. As the mentor, I offer six hours for free and we discuss on our initial call how these hours can be used best to utilise the experience for the mentee to ensure they get the most out of the programme."

Laura Anne Harvey

Laura has been mentoring Corin Bell from Open Kitchen, and is excited to begin mentoring Rachel Poole from Continental Fashion, helping both to upskill and develop their companies.

She explained the kind of support she offers her mentees: "For Corin, I have been offering support on marketing and what’s worked well for other businesses similar to her. I have also done some marketing training to help develop her skill set and take this back to implement into her business.

"For Rachel, we are specifically focusing on the role of the director. I will share experiences around subjects such as corporate risk management, leadership styles, change management, strategy tools and any other areas that we feel are relevant to the role as a director."

Laura enjoys speaking with her mentees, and has found it very easy to develop strong and supportive working relationships. She is able to offer support to both women via zoom, as well as by meeting up in person.

She said: "Both personalities match mine in terms of energy and the approach that we work in.

"I have done a two hour session with Corin and really enjoy spending time with her. She is very passionate about her business and its values. We have been doing zoom calls. I have had the introduction call with Rachel on Zoom we have our first session booked on Zoom but we may work on a hybrid approach so some sessions may be face to face."

Although the mentorship programme has only just begun, Laura is thrilled to see the sessions beginning to take play in the businesses of her mentees, she said: "Corin is implementing the things we discuss in our sessions that she feels will work for her business.

"I am helping her to understand more about marketing and the different roles in marketing and we will look at job specs and responsibilities to ensure her marketing team is effective. If they can drive sales this will help the business with costs.

Laura believes that this a great programme to get involved in for anyone who is looking to grow, learn, or climb the ladder in business.

"I would recommend this service to any start up business, or for people who may have been promoted or want to apply for a senior role within a business but would like some support. I think this service would be good for any business who is struggling, needs to reduce costs and look at operational efficiencies."

Laura Anne Harvey, Greater Manchester Leadership Hive Mentor

To find out more about the Leadership Hive programmes that could help to accelerate your business, click here.

To find out more about the iMentor Mentoring programme, click here.