As the dawn of a new year unfolds, I often compare this to the poised anticipation before a swimmer takes that crucial dive off the starting blocks.

Many business leaders find themselves on the brink of a fresh beginning, with apprehension of what the year ahead holds in store, the strategic significance of a well-earned break and the profound insights gained during moments of reflection.

Picture a swimmer, muscles tensed, standing on the starting blocks, ready to break through the water’s surface. And, within business, the return from a well-enjoyed break mirrors this poised anticipation—a delicate balance of eagerness and trepidation. The initial thrust off the blocks sets the tone for the entire race, just as the first steps back into the business world can chart the course for the year ahead.

And, like the swimmer encountering varying currents, business is filled with unpredictable challenges also. Something I’ve recognised as both a distance swimmer and business leader is that resilience is not just a trait but a prerequisite for success. Over my extensive research into what is required not just to grow but sustainably scale up businesses, I recognise that our ability to prepare for and manage turbulent currents are an inherent part of the journey.  And, just as my swimming (both in terms of distance and time/energy) has been transformed through coaching. I assist business leaders navigate challenges with a graceful stroke, turning adversity into an opportunity for growth.

Over the past few years specifically, we’ve all seen and been impacted by the fluidity of business. And, just as in the open waters, we also saw the critical importance of pivoting – adaptability is the key to staying afloat. As a swimmer, I recognise the need to adjust my stroke to the changing tides. Similarly, #ADDAZERO Methodology shows the importance of adapting strategies to the evolving landscape. Your ability to pivot, much like a swimmer adjusting their technique, ensures not just survival but a competitive edge in the ever-shifting fluidity of commerce.

One of the most impactful transitions I’ve made in the pool, is slowing each stroke down to examine in detail every part. Every kick, every turn, every breath.  I’ve shaved almost 6mins of my mile, by recognising success hinges on the precision of each stroke.  Likewise, business success demands meticulous planning and execution.

“Everything you have ever done has led you to where you are right now.

However, if where you are right now, isn’t where you want to be?

It may take reviewing and revising everything you now do, to get you to where you want to be”.

Eye for detail

With a discerning eye for detail and a willingness to ask awkward questions, I ensure every decision you make is a purposeful stroke propelling your business forward. Everything I do is a carefully calculated stroke towards our larger #ADDAZERO mission.

One of the other significant breakthroughs I’ve had within my swimming this year is to really get a better understanding of my breathing. For the business leader, so often ‘always on the go’ this translates through to the willingness and ability to stop and ‘take a breath’.  Strategic planning and better financial acumen become the oxygen for sustained business endurance. The #ADDAZERO Methodology ensures that the business not only survives but thrives in the long swim to success. This attention to both financial health and the importance of stopping to ‘take a breath’ aligns seamlessly with the ethical business practices advocated by My TrueNORTH.

Any competitive swimmer seeks to break personal records, constantly pushing the limits of their own capabilities. And, in the last year, I’ve seen this in both distances covered, and time taken. Culminating in completing my first-ever triathlon in August. And, as we enter 2024, fuelled by the #ADDAZERO ethos, I both encourage and hold to account business owners to push their limits ethically and authentically. The goal is not just financial success but achieving a personal best in creating a positive impact on both their business, community, and profession.

Eagerness to get started

Like many an entrepreneur, over the last 2 weeks, I’ve grapples with the subtle weight of apprehension that precedes the return to business in a new year. I’m sure I’m not alone, and this resonates with many other conscientious business owners, particularly those aligned with the ethos of #ADDAZERO, seeking to grow authentically and ethically. The apprehension, far from a deterrent, becomes a driver for meticulous planning and strategic thinking.

Therefore, the break over Christmas becomes more than a reprieve; it’s a calculated pause in the constant pulse of business operations. I not only understand but fully advocate the strength of reflection during these breaks. It’s a time to recalibrate, recharge, and, most importantly, to gain fresh insights that can fuel the momentum for the year ahead.

However, for this to be anything more than a physical pause, reflecting on the past year cannot be just a cursory glance at achievements and setbacks.  But used as a deep dive into the nuances of the entrepreneurial journey. To get its true value, you must be willing to go beyond the surface, ask those difficult questions, and extract the valuable lessons from triumphs and challenges alike. Our VIP EXPERIENCE days have proven for many this year a golden opportunity for a highly skilled and experienced scaleup mentor to meticulous review the actions and outcomes, offering guidance, advise, recommendation and resources for refining strategies, setting informed goals, and steering your business to #ADDAZERO.

As we welcome in a New Year, and I return to the helm of My TrueNORTH, this is far from a mere resumption of routine. It’s a plunge back into uncharted waters, armed with a reservoir of new ideas and a commitment to ethical business practices. The #ADDAZERO ethos isn’t just a slogan—it’s a pledge to leave a legacy. Which is defined by personalised 1:1 mentoring, backed by the multi-award winning and accredited #ADDAZERO Methodology playing its distinct role in shaping the UK business owner landscape of sustainable business growth.

As a fellow business leader, I invite you to take the plunge by completing the #ADDAZERO Scaleup Audit, and see for yourself the shape your business is in.

As my swimming coach has assisted me in assessing my strokes and techniques, this audit serves as a mirror, reflecting the hidden opportunity and vulnerabilities in your business strategy.  What better way to start the year, than to refine your approach, align with ethical practices, and set a course for sustained growth

So, what are you waiting for? Dive into the #ADDAZERO Scaleup Audit. Your scaleup journey begins with a single stroke…

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