Monday, 31 August 2015

Jessica Ennis is the perfect business role model

Pete Crouch, managing director of Pinktulip Productions explains why business people an learn a lot from Olympians like Jessica Ennis

inspiring a generation: Jessica Ennis with her gold medal. Now there are calls to re-introduce sporting opportunities into our school system

Team GB’s excellent medal hoard in the Olympics has had me thinking about what it takes to be truly great.
Being in business may seem like a question of survival at times, but what does it take to become a world-beater like some of the Cumbrian companies in the news in this week - the Lake District Creamery and James Fisher, for example?
As a small business owner I have to fulfil a number of roles, and it is rarely easy to be great at all of them, but we saw in the Olympics some athletes who can be truly great all-rounders. Just look at Jess Ennis’ gold winning performance in the Heptathlon, an example of a truly exceptional person.
However, our athletes cannot achieve success on their own and have to build a team of experts around them. Team ‘Jennis’ is made up of a whole host of specialists who help Jess deliver outstanding results - nutritionists, physios, biomechanists, coach, managers, etc - all individually exceptional at what they do.
This shows us the real benefits of collaboration and making sure you work with the right team of individuals that allow you to be great at what you do. I think looking at the way athletes run their ‘business’ should be great inspiration for those of us in business.
It’s easy to get dragged down in all the doom and gloom surrounding the global economy and banking crisis etc but in my mind where there is difficulty there is opportunity and as many economic experts and commentators have said over the past couple of years the UK economic recovery will start with the SMEs and collaboration is the way forward.
I am not a Cumbrian, but since I settled here eight years ago I have developed strong relationships with businesses in the area. There is a real sense of loyalty among Cumbrian businesses and building on those relationships allows for strong growth.
Such collaboration can be seen on a grand scale this week with the announcement that Britain’s Energy Coast is investing £5 million in projects including harbour improvements and Rosehill Theatre.
Collaboration in itself is not easy, and finding the right people who complement each other and bring the best out of each other should be a challenge every business embraces.

This article was originally published in our weekly newsletter which goes out to over 1300 businesses across Cumbria every Friday. To sign up go to

By By Pete Crouch
Published: August 28, 2012


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