Sales Masters Guild Founder, John F Kettley takes us back to the birth of the guild and why he’s still pushing things forward today.
2009 was a pivotal year; a year when the business world tipped over a cliff edge from which it would never be the same.
Up until that point the corporate world were desperately clinging on to all that they knew of how to sustain their business growth, in a world that was changing ever faster due to the way in which people were purchasing just about everything.
The Lehman brothers titanic crash that began the financial markets meltdown was literally the tip of the iceberg, the real reason that its demise led to so many businesses across the world falling over was actually not just down to the withdrawal of banks’ lending facilities, it was far worse than that, it was down to the senior management teams of so many companies simply not adjusting their business models to change with the times.
It also resulted in a seismic shift in my focus from a life time of building businesses to sell, to becoming a turnaround specialist and mentor to business owners.
I was between projects and the phone calls I was receiving at the time were from business owners I knew well, asking me to come in and take a look at what they were doing… oh my god was it an eye opener…
As I look back on it now some 10 years later, and with the benefit of having worked with many hundreds of business owners, I can share with you that the core problem for most businesses, is their ‘driver’ i.e. the MD or CEO of the organisation not having a strong outside perspective to draw them back from their mirror so that they can see what it only too obvious when you see the landscape from a helicopter view point… Essentially they are simply not seeing where the landscape is moving too.
The Beginning of a Different Way of Seeing
What followed the collapse of so many institutions across the UK, was an avalanche of people falling out of the corporate tree; people who had spent a life time building careers only to see their positions become void, and now in their late 40’s, 50’ with little prospect of getting a similar position, many decided to take the opportunity to pivot.
Masses of ex corporates made the decision to become a consultant, business coach or therapist in an effort to become master of their own destiny and try to build a decent work-life balance on their own only to discover that the business consultancy sector is a famine or feast business model that so many fail to ever succeed in.
Meanwhile the government were rolling out business development grants left and right trying and stop the massive numbers of businesses that were failing and adding to the country’s unemployment figures.
This was a time when I personally thought that organisations like the FSB and the Chamber of Commerce would have been running solid business development trainings, to teach business owners how to recalibrate their business models and grow stronger businesses, but they simply weren’t geared up for this or (as far as I could see) interested in changing their business models to change with the times which is the principle reason why I founded the Sales Masters Guild to offer what no organisation was offering to the business community, real world entrepreneur training geared to creating sales revenues and business growth.
From my stand point I could see a massive hole in the business world, wherein business owners needed a fresh approach from that which all of the traditional consultants and business coaches were offering i.e. real-world entrepreneur training.
I’ve a saying I’ve used for many years when mentoring and training business owners
“Until a sale has been made, a business is nothing more than a good idea”
Which is why I called our organisation the Sales Masters Guild; my belief being that if you can master ‘sales generation’ and all of the key elements that make up a business that works. You’ll have a business that will always make money.
Sales generation is at the centre of absolutely everything that we do, which in truth is what separates us as an organisation from just about every action business coaches focus upon, and which is why I believe our reputation in the business world has grown and why today some 10 years later, we are still heavily focused on delivering the kind of mentored support business owners ‘need’ to turn their business around and take it to levels beyond what most think is achievable.
This said we’ve still have a long, long way to go in educating the business community to the real-world advantages of engaging with a personal business mentor and the speed at which they can accelerate an ambitious person and organisation.
I sincerely hope that by sharing with you my journey over the last decade, and how both the business and personal business development landscape have changed, that you take from this something that will help you to see ‘your business’ with fresh eyes and a renewed inspiration to plan for a bigger future for you, your family and your business.
If this blog resinates with you and you may be of interested in one or more of our training courses. Training courses are regularly run by our Mentors across the country.
You can find out more about Sales Masters Guild founder, John F Kettley over on his profile page.
John F Kettley
John F Kettley is the founder of The Sales Masters Guild.
A serial entrepreneur from his teenage years, John and his companies have sold a vast range of products and services across just about every market sector and medium there is, both here in Europe and the USA.