For Charlotte Nichols, founder and managing director of Harvey & Hugo, this has come in the form of the valuable time she spends with Peter Wilcock, speaker and author, founder of customer services specialist Carpeo and of marketing business The Growth Machine.
After Charlotte’s PR and marketing agency grew in recent years and expanded into a number of new areas, she recognised the need for a source of support and advice on how to further that success. Here’s how she and her mentor have both benefited from the experience.
As head of a flourishing PR and marketing agency based in Darlington and Newcastle, Charlotte Nichols was keen to learn from someone with experience of growing businesses to enable her to further expand her enterprise.
“After working for several years in PR I set up my business in 2009 with the aim of demystifying PR by creating simple ‘off the shelf’ Pay-as-Hugo PR and marketing packages that are flexible, cost-effective and deliver results.
“Today I’m proud to say I have a brilliant, passionate and hardworking team and we’ve established ourselves a fantastic reputation for making our clients’ brands desirable to their target markets.
“However I have now reached the stage where I am looking to grow the business to the next level, and so the mentoring scheme has been an excellent way of gaining an insight on how best to do that.
“By working with Peter, it’s been great to have someone I can bounce ideas off and get feedback from. Owning a business can be a lonely place sometimes and so I’ve also made a good friend
out of it. He’s even passed business my way.
“Peter has helped me to establish goals for my business and provides inspiration and ideas on how to deal with things and keeps me focused. I would definitely recommend mentoring to other members of the forum. I would say, though, that it’s important to find a good match.”
Given that digital marketing is becoming an increasing part of Harvey & Hugo’s business, working with its founder helped Peter Wilcock discover the importance of blogging and social media. He also found the mentoring experience extremely fulfilling in other ways.
“Being an Entrepreneurs’ Forum mentor enabled me to give something back by spending time discussing somebody else’s business. The most common issue amongst business owners is they feel they’re on their own out there, mentoring can fill that gap and hopefully be there as a support from time to time. Having two daughters of my own, I would also like to think that someone would be there to help them if they ever set up a business as Charlotte has.
“I was very impressed with what Charlotte has achieved so far and hopefully, with my help as a sounding board and adviser, she will achieve a lot more in the coming years.
“During the mentoring process I have encouraged her to think about what Harvey & Hugo actually does, what its vision is and what its elevator pitch should be. This has enabled us to set clear goals for the future. She’s also helped me discover a love of blogging that has even spurred me on to write a book. On second thoughts, it could be Charlotte is the mentor!”