Article featured in the Plymouth Herald by Herald Business Editor, William Telford
PLYMOUTH businessman Henry Hutchins has been selected to take part in an exclusive course run by one of the world’s biggest finance companies to help rapidly expanding enterprises.
The chief executive of Clever Student Lets was summoned to join Goldman Sachs fast growth programme for companies with turnover of at least £1.5 million, which are showing immense promise.
Goldman Sachs, which runs the 10,000 Small Business Programme, is a US-headquartered global investment banking goliath, engaged in investment management, securities and other financial services.
Mr Hutchins, boss of the expanding student lettings agency, spent one week each at seminars at Leeds University’s business school, Aston University in Birmingham, and the University of Oxford’s prestigious said Business School.
He was taught by experts, including his personal mentor Amanda Poole from Said Business School, along with 40 other business bosses.
“The course was mind-blowing,” said Mr Hutchins. “Without doubt the finest course available to growth companies and those that want to build them.”
“Goldman Sachs believes small business people are not given the back-up and support they need to build their businesses, so they want to give those businesses training.”
“Goldman Sachs just rang me out of the blue. People can be nominated for it but they chose me through tracking the business. “
“They are looking for people with a track record for growth.” Mr Hutchins said the free course covered a wide range of business related topics including growth curves, profit-and-loss accounts, marketing, leadership, employment law, pricing and sales.”
“It’s more valuable than doing an MBA,” he said. As well as sessions with academics, he took part in webinars and Skype sessions and carried out written work, with days often running to 14 hours. We weren’t there to relax,” he said.
Other companies on the course included tech firms, alternative energy companies, restaurants and even a funeral director. He said that after graduating from the course his business becomes a member of a ’10,000 Club’, connecting him with other like-minded entrepreneurs across the UK and US.”
“We can talk to each other and receive advice,” Mr Hutchins said. “It will be with someone who has been through the same problems and can understand what you are doing.”
Mr Hutchins said he has already acted on some other things he learned on the course, for instance, installing two new computer systems at Clever Student Lets and enrolling one of his directors on an MBA course.
“How many business people look at themselves and ask if they are weak or if they are the right person to do something?” he asked. “I’m making changes in myself and in the company, and real fundamental changes.”