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Online Live: Case Studies

Plan. Grow. Do. Background:

Five months of lockdown has changed the business landscape of the Sheffield City Region forever – if businesses weren’t already marketing and selling online, they now have no choice but to upskill to survive.

The heavy industrial base of the Sheffield City Region has been built on traditional methods of buying and selling – the pandemic has dealt a body blow to everything from face-to-face networking to doing business on the golf-course. Businesses need to transform their marketing and selling methods to have any chance of competing in the digital world. Doing it the way they’ve always done will no longer work.

Plan. Grow. Do. is one of the single biggest Covid rescue packages for businesses in the whole of the UK. 100’s of businesses are being offered fully funded training to give them the confidence, structure, and process to compete in the digital world.

50 business leaders were invited to trial the Plan. Grow. Do. training in July/August 2020 and the results exceeded all expectations. Skillsbank – which is funded by the Local Enterprise Partnership – is now investing to open up the pioneering training to save and transform businesses; save and create jobs and to ensure the economy of the Sheffield City Region rebuilds and recovers after the devastation of Covid.

The Plan. Grow. Do. programme has been devised by two of the region’s most influential sales and marketing experts.

Rob Taylor – who has worked with the likes of Amazon and Google – has won plaudits for his work helping traditional businesses embrace and harness the power of the digital economy.

Steve Knapp’s inspirational selling techniques are still the cornerstone of one of the world’s biggest brands – Shell. In 2019 he released his best-selling Amazon book ‘FunnelVision – Selling Made Easy’ which has introduced his pioneering teachings to businesses and entrepreneurs worldwide.

The Plan. Grow. Do. training majors on factors that are critical to Covid recovery and include:

  • Understanding the new environment
  • Planning actionable recovery steps
  • Sales training to boost confidence.

Case study 1:

Kayleigh Thompson, Energy Consultant, Professional Energy Purchasing.

Kayleigh Thompson, Energy Consultant, Professional Energy Purchasing, said the training gave her a completely new perspective on the relationship between two key parts of her business – sales and marketing. It also provided a lot of post-training support and invaluable hints and tips.

She said: “One of the biggest outcomes was seeing how the sales and marketing operation of a business actually complement each other and should always be made to work together. I’d never viewed it like that before.

“I can’t believe how much I took away from the training. I carry the three course books around in my laptop bag everywhere I go. It’s very easy to lose sight of what you should be doing and what should take priority when you’re busy in your job. Plan. Grow. Do. has helped keep my focus on the right things.

“I now make a ‘to do’ list and a ‘priority list’.

“I was that impressed with what I’d experienced on the Plan. Grow. Do. taster webinars through the Chamber of Commerce I was already to buy the course. When I found it was fully funded, I jumped at the chance! I’d suggest anyone else does the same.”

"One of the biggest outcomes was seeing how the sales and marketing operation of a business actually complement each other and should always be made to work together. I’d never viewed it like that before."

Case study 2:

Jason Duffy, Arthur Rose Recruitment

Jason Duffy is a recruitment agent. He launched his business just weeks into the pandemic. He says every single aspect of Plan. Grow. Do. was of high value. He also enjoyed the fact – though the training was delivered live online – that he was able to share best practice with other businesses on the course.

“This training was truly worth its weight in gold for me. It’s very easy to get complacent in your business. It’s very easy to forget the importance of training. I’m so very glad I opted for doing the Plan. Grow. Do. course. Being a relatively new business there’s so much to think about. Some of the most important things I’ve learnt for my business is the sales funnel and sales cycle; how to pitch yourself and an insight into how the different platforms work. It was very interesting to know where I’m selling on the sales cycle and how that can be adapted to influence the outcome. I got complacent and I was stuck in a rut. Even if you think you know it all you definitely don’t.

“The style of presentation was brilliant and I’m still in touch with people from the course.”

“This training was truly worth its weight in gold for me.“

Case study 3:

Adam Bradley, Corrosion Resistant Materials Ltd.

Mexborough-based Corrosion Resistant Materials Ltd is a family-run specialist, technical materials supplier working in the steel trade. The industry has been particularly hard hit in the pandemic. Getting the Sheffield City Region’s traditional industries ‘digitally fit’ is a major goal of the Plan. Grow. Do. programme. Adam Bradley, director of Corrosion Resistant Materials, successfully completed our training.

He said: “No one will leave Plan. Grow. Do. empty handed. Before the pandemic I’d be getting in the car or boarding a plane to do face-to-face meetings. Now I’m doing 15 meetings a day on Zoom or on the phone. I’m far more productive.

“The Plan. Grow. Do. training encouraged me to position myself as more of an expert and grasp opportunities. The company now works more collaboratively with other stockholders.

This never happened before“People sometimes dismiss training opportunities like this because they think it will be too much time out of their working day. This was a great time investment and it didn’t’ actually take that much time. Every single business will get something out of it.”

“The Plan. Grow. Do. training encouraged me to position myself as more of an expert and grasp opportunities. The company now works more collaboratory with other stockholders. This never happened before."

Case study 4:

Andy Freeman, Space To Breath.

Andy Freeman is co-director and founder of Space to Breath – a collective of experienced and professional well-being experts based all over the UK. The business is well-versed in dealing with people that have mental health issues – getting the sales strategy exactly right was of paramount importance.

Andy Freeman said: “I was always aware sales was something we needed to do more of. But I was a bit nervous about it. I wanted to do sales in a way that seemed right for the values of our company. Before Plan. Grow. Do. there was no sense of planning attached to our sales strategy and I was very attracted to that area of the training. I found the course delivered on that and a lot more. Prior to the training I’d say we were absolutely delighted when anyone at all wanted to work with us – whether they fitted us or not! Now we have an understanding of the kinds of people we can help. Before the course I was very good at coming up with my own good idea and I’d say ‘let’s do this’. Now we’re identifying things people are struggling with.

We’re looking at ways to build trust and then helping people. The sales are coming more naturally. We’ve come up with a company well-being audit to allow businesses to spot any areas that need addressing. We’re then working with those companies to address the issues.”

“We’re looking at ways to build trust and then helping people. The sales are coming more naturally."

Case study 5:

Rob Shaw, Glu Recruit

Rob Shaw is managing director of Sheffield-based Glu Recruit Ltd – a business that has enjoyed over a decade in the industry. Plan. Grow. Do. has enabled the company to have a far clearer understanding of its ideal customers and how best to engage with them – vital in a period that has seen a fundamental shift in the ways companies do business following the impact of the pandemic.

Rob Shaw said: “Every single member of our team was left with something positive from the training that they’re now implementing in their day-to-day role. Plan. Grow. Do. has provided the company with a much clearer idea of who our ideal clients are and how we structure our sales activity to engage with them. This has made it far easier to measure success and identify any further training required within Glu-Recruit.

“The training itself was delivered in a very down to earth way. It was insightful and fun. I would encourage any business to take part. The world has changed so much this year and sales efforts need to adapt to a different kind of marketplace. Plan. Grow. Do. is a great opportunity to make sure you’re selling to the right people in the right way. You will be given the clarity and structure to move forward and have a far more competitive business as a result.”

"Every single member of our team was left with something positive from the training that they’re now implementing in their day-to-day role"

Do you qualify for fully funded sales training from Plan. Grow. Do.?

The application process to access 100% funded support from the Sheffield city Region Growth Hub, Skillsbank is simple, quick, and guaranteed to be accepted assuming three simple pre qualification criteria;

  1. You’re a business owner, or part of a team in Sheffield, Doncaster, Barnsley or Rotherham
  2. You’ve been trading (Sole trader or Ltd company) for 12 months or more
  3. You and the attendees are over 19 years old.