We met with Tony Snaith, founder and CEO of Communicate PLC, at the company’s new offices in a business park just outside Middlesbrough.
Tony has a clearly-defined direction for his business, which is something he believes is vitally important for all small businesses, but he feels that a gradual loss of direction is holding many small businesses back once they start to grow:
“Do you know what amazes me? Every single person writes a business plan either to take to the bank to get their loan or because they have been told to by their business school. Then the second they get started, it’s thrown in the bin! My advice? Stick to your foundations and you can’t go far wrong.”
Tony believes that the keys to achieving a specific goal (his was to float the business within 10 years) are having structures that support your business goal and rigour at the heart of the business.
For Tony, this meant setting the business up as a Public Limited Company from the very start (even including it as part of the name) as well as investing heavily in having the right legal structures, accounting practices and businesses process in place right from day one – something which many businesses only do much further down the line, if at all.
“Rigour means my business can quickly expand and roll out in new regions as well as adapting to new market trends and technology innovations while keeping to a clear direction.”
Tony strongly advocates the importance of having a strong mission and vision from the start because it has absolutely worked for him. He’s stuck to his business plan from day one, and now has one of the fastest-growing and most innovative small businesses in Europe.
What marketers can learn from Tony:
Any business that wants to grow fast and sell must keep its eyes on the prize, following a very specific roadmap to help them get there.
Marketers that want to reach people like Tony need to identify the points where they can join them on their journey, and make clear exactly how they can make the road to success smoother and, ideally, shorter.
Wynyard Business Park, Wynyard Park House, Wynyard Park Avenue, Wynyard, TS22 5TB