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Introducing...Sean

05/06/2017

Tell us how you got started in the digital/creative/tech space...

After five years in finance I joined a global tech business to work in their consultancy division. Seeing how organisations and technology fit together to do new and interesting things always captured my interest and it was great to work on projects that had me out in glamourous hotspots like Mumbai, Krakow and Skelmersdale 

 

Six years ago I founded my own business to help SMEs grow and found myself working with creative & digital companies to develop their offer and win new business, before then co-founding Form with Matt in 2015.

 

What is your current role and what do you enjoy most about it?

I do a bunch of stuff in the business leading on client management and operations whilst also running Form’s leadership development programmes with Manchester Growth Company and Tech North. I love delivery - the biggest kick is when you see people in front of you make new connections in their brain that you know are going to open up new possibilities and avenues for their business to grow.  

No-one ever said 'you know what we really need here is less clarity'

Why Manchester? 

I’m a Northern lad having lived in Stretford and Sale in South Manchester for 10 years, with stints in Sheffield, York, Newcastle and Liverpool before that. This is a great time for the North; we’ve got the people, the ideas and the potential to build on the legacy of many before us who have created things that become known the world over.  

 

What's one big thing you've learned about what it takes to grow a business?

Never underestimate the power of simply asking. Maybe it’s a cultural / British thing about being reserved and polite, and sometimes its doubt, a lack of confidence or a lack of clarity that holds us back. But when you’re looking to grow, often it’s not a new strategy that’s really needed, rather it’s taking something you believe in and being bold in moving on from planning to actually getting out there and making clear asks of people.  

 

What's the piece of advice you find yourself giving most often? 

No-one ever said ‘you know what we really need here is less clarity’. It’s hard and sometimes painful graft, but stripping away the clutter and / or cutting through the fog to get to the essence of an idea, a plan or a message is something that I often find myself helping folk with. Clarity creates momentum and momentum delivers results.  

 

Best book you've read in the last year and why? 

Probably Talk Like TED. Speaking in public remains an essential (albeit daunting) skill to master for both building profile and stirring movement amongst your followers. We all need to constantly get better at how we communicate and this is a great digest of how the best speakers in the world move people to action.  

Speaking in public remains an essential (albeit daunting) skill to master

One album and/or podcast we all need to have in our lives...

I do a lot of driving between the northern hub cities so am chewing through a bunch of podcasts at the minute. I come back most often to the “99% Invisible” podcast coming out of California. With ‘off-the-beaten-track stories that resonate with my creative side and its gorgeous production it always gives me pause for thought.  

 

Most looking forward to about Greater Connected? 

Simple really, it’s the chance to help high potential businesses go further faster. People have all kind of reasons for wanting to grow and when you help folk discover those reasons and see them build a plan and put it into action, it’s the biggest buzz I’ve found you can get in work time!

 

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