11 April 2017

Meet the Group CEO - John Mitchell

We welcome John Mitchell as group CEO following Business South’s merger with Enterprise First last year.

What are you most excited about in terms of taking the helm of Business South and what are the opportunities going forward?

 Business South and Enterprise First are uniquely placed to bridge the gap between start-ups and small businesses and their connection to large corporates.  As well as linking the supply chain, it’s also about knowledge sharing, mentoring, and addressing wider concerns that reflect the whole business community such as recruitment, infrastructure and transport.  Our combined expertise and non-political affiliations mean we can work with a variety of key stakeholders within the public and private sectors to bring about positive change and economic growth.  That to be is really exciting. I’m looking forward to meeting the Champions and hearing directly from them how we can best work together.


What’s been your most successful professional achievement to date or what are you most proud of?

Growing and developing Enterprise First to become the leading south-east business support organisation in supporting aspiring entrepreneurs and helping small businesses reach their potential. We’ve achieved that through listening to our customers, building a strong team, and continually expanding and diversifying our service offer.


What are the biggest challenges facing businesses at the moment and how are we adapting to those needs?

Technology is changing the way we do everything and the speed at which we do them too.  Being able to understand and interpret what drives client behaviours is important as it can keep you a step ahead of competitors. 

I think finding and keeping good staff is also the key to a successful business.  Most of all through, its constantly evaluating what you are doing, try new things but make sure you know if they are making a difference.  We tell our clients all the time that it’s about working smarter not harder.  Use your resources, review your business plans and performance regularly and be agile.  All businesses need to continuously evolve and transform if they want to be successful.


What three words best describe your character?

Northern, Determined, Progressive


Who and what inspires you?

I admire all those who take the risk in starting their own business, especially those who have started with nothing, or from challenging circumstances.


What’s the best advice you have ever received?

Never judge a book by its cover!


Where do you want to be in 10 years’ time and what will be your business legacy?

Hopefully retired from full-time work, but active, and giving something back to those who haven’t been as lucky as me.


In terms of legacy, I hope all those I’ve worked with, colleagues and customers have picked up some knowledge or experience to help them meet their goals.


If you wish to contact John directly, he can be reached via:

Telephone: 02380 682520 or 01252 319272


Twitter: @JohnMitch4

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