AFTER 55 years in business Ravenshead’s Tony Bittlestone is better placed than most to know how to turn around a failing business.
Folllowing 24 years as a Chartered Accountant and finance director experienced Tony (71) formed Non Executive Direction in 1980, offering vital advice and tips on how to salvage struggling businesses.
Since forming his personal business, the hardworking director has worked with 45 SME’s and helped swing around the ailing fortunes of 34 different companies across 17 different sectors.
And, according to Tony, the key to any successful business is having a firm control on the company’s cash flow.
“When I go to work with a company, the first thing I do is ask the opinions of the manager and the board of directors, preferably on an individual basis,”he said.
“My main concentration has alway been cash flow of the business, is it good, is it bad, can it be improved?
“I have never failed to improve the cash flow of the company I am working in some way or other.
“On top of sorting out the cash flow, I like to improve the attitude of the managers and to get them to look outwards,” added Tony, who has recently returned to Nottinghamshire after successful spells in other areas of the country.
Looking outwards and seeing the bigger picture, as well as having the correct staff in the correct areas are also key to the long term success of any SME.
Said Tony: “I look at who is not peforming and which areas need additions to improve the team, but I am not a hatchet man, more a ‘candid friend’ of the board. It can be lonely at the top.
“I have a lot of experience in business and over the years I have spotted boards at SME’s still making the same mistakes that were being made 20 or 30 years ago. With my experience I can help them.”
Tony believes there are very few companies out there who cannot be turned around with hardwork.
“Most companies are there to be saved and there are many different ways this can be achieved,” he said.
“The bigger the company the longer the assessment process takes, as there are many different factors to consider.
“It takes around 10 days over three months before you get a sense of what can be changed. The changes are then made in the order of significance.
“I am interested in helping people. It will cost them very little for me to give them a view.
“Once I am there most companies are very happy that I am there.”
For more information on how Tony can help your business, call 07850 346 544 or email firstname.lastname@example.org