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how she did it

Case Studies // “I should be doing what ...

“I should be doing what I wanted to do, not what someone else wanted me to do”

Sue Weighell, the owner of Delta Solutions, shares her story of how and why she started her business. She says , “I decided that I should be doing what I wanted to do, not what someone else wanted me to do. Delta Solutions was born.”


My business

I describe myself as an accountant but that is only half the story. Although my background is accountancy and I have worked as a Finance Director, I have expanded my experience in a Managing Director role. Using this experience, I have set up Delta Solutions to use all my business experience to help SME’s grow in a stable manner. The finance basics must be in place so that a business can grow with strong foundations and my experience in accountancy gives me the ability to help businesses achieve this. But this will be done without losing sight of the whole business.

Planning the strategic direction of the company and management of both short and long-term financial goals is vital to the stability of a business. I can examine the business and in discussions with management, can produce a plan for the future and more importantly, ensure that all staff “buy-in” to the plan.

I will look at a business from the basics up and will review all basic processes to ensure managers and owners are making decisions about the business on accurate information.

An example

  • Invoice someone incorrectly and that will give them an excuse not to pay – poor cashflow.
  • Invoice someone incorrectly and your profit and loss account will be affected – overstated or understated profit.
  • Invoice someone incorrectly – incorrect gross profit.
  • Invoice someone incorrectly – dissatisfied customer

So systems should be set up to minimise these errors and staff should be fully trained to understand what impact their role has in the business.

Why?

I set the business up last year when the role I had held for some years changed and I no longer felt fulfilled at work. But it was a job and so I just carried on. In March last year my Mum died. I had spent a lot of time, whilst working full-time and looking after two teenage children, visiting Mum regularly and doing her shopping after she had lost Dad to cancer in 2006. So all that suddenly changed and it made me question my work and I decided that I should be doing what I wanted to do, not what someone else wanted me to do. Delta Solutions was born.

Challenges?

The biggest challenge has been building a business up from scratch. I have excellent technical skills but needed to build up a client base. Luckily I have some marketing knowledge and also experience of social media. I am also a keen networker and belong to a number of groups. I am the current Chair of Network North West, a women’s network group. I have built up a good contact list over the years with banks, funders, solicitors, financial advisers etc

Overcoming the challenge?

Well, it is slow progress but both face to face and virtual networking are helping build a client base. I have also taken on some unpaid work for social enterprises where I feel I can use my skills to help others.

Setting up a new business is hard and potential entrepreneurs need to do their homework and have a good financial base from which to work. Funding from external sources is available but not always easy to acquire, particularly for new start-ups. New start-ups must have in place a good business plan detailing their business and targets they have set. They need to do their homework and ensure that they have robust plans in place.

Business training

As a support to start-up businesses and those recently set up in business, I am just putting together some training packages to teach people business finance on either a one-to-one basis or as part of a group. These will be offered as competitive prices by myself and people who are experts in their specific fields. So watch my website for details when they have been finalised.

Inspiration

I have always found Anita Roddick inspirational in the way she built up a successful business chain but combined that with a social conscience. Although, I know not all will agree with me. I feel that it is important to give back to society and have in the past been a school governor, something that I would like to take on again one day. I am currently an Ambassador for The Genesis Appeal, the only UK charity dedicated to the prevention of breast cancer – something that I have personally experienced.

Closer to home, I spent a lot of time with my grandmother as a child and think that I gained a love of cookery and sewing from her. Hobbies that sometimes get left on the side nowadays! I also remember going with her to houses measuring up for the curtains that she made. And at the age of 80 she took up a new hobby – glove-making. She hand sewed made-to-measure leather gloves. That’s inspirational.

What next?

I am now looking forward to building Delta Solutions and helping other businesses grow with a strong financial foundation. A client once said “My business wouldn’t be where it was today without Sue”. What a compliment. I can’t ask more than that.

Sue Weighell, Director of Delta Solutions

[email protected]

www.delta-solutions.org.uk

Office: 0845 164 5015

Mobile: 07796 176817

Blog: http://suziw.wordpress.com/

Facebook: www.facebook.com

Twitter: SueWeighell

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