Bid writer and coach, Dr Holger Garden, met a fellow Buckinghamshire Business First member at a Buckinghamshire Business Leaders’ Dinner and was soon writing an important bid for them that led to Holger’s new client being awarded a £3m contract – the company’s largest-ever assignment.
Details of Holger’s client cannot be shared due to the nature of the contract and client confidentiality, but Holger was more than happy to tell the story from the point of view of his Amersham-based business, Mercury Communication & Strategy Ltd. “I think it’s a great story to tell. Not only does it show what a united business community we have in Buckinghamshire, it also shows the opportunities that exist for businesses on the lookout for them,” says Holger, who recently invested in Buckinghamshire Business First and became a Partner member in the organisation in order to raise his business profile and give something back to a local business community that he feels a big part of.
“It was at the Business Leaders’ Dinner at Stoke Park in May 2015 when my new client-to-be overheard me talking in the catering queue about what I do,” reveals Holger. “We started chatting and quickly realised that what I do – writing, presenting and coaching for success - and what they needed were perfectly aligned. We met up soon after the event and began the process of working together on an important bid they were putting together – in fact, their most important ever.” Not only that, Holger also worked with them on a presentation that formed part of the bid process - and his work certainly paid off, with the company successfully bidding for a contract worth more than £3m in consultancy fees to be gained over a ten-year commission. This opportunity represents a step change in the company’s future revenue stream.
This is far from the first time that business has been facilitated via an encounter at a Business Leaders’ Dinner - and these encounters are far from chance. Whether it’s overhearing a conversation while queuing for food or being sat next to a stranger who turns out to offer exactly what you need, making a useful connection is something to be expected when you are surrounded by dozens of the brightest and most enquiring business minds in the Entrepreneurial Heart of Britain.
“This is what you get with Buckinghamshire Business First,” says Holger, “a business community that can and does work together.” It was partly this allure of a united business community that encouraged Holger to invest in Buckinghamshire Business First and become a Partner member. “I had worked with Buckinghamshire Business First on a couple of projects which gave me a great insight into what they do for the county’s businesses, and I was impressed with the investment opportunities on offer.
“Becoming a Partner member in Buckinghamshire Business First has allowed me increased exposure via the online member directory as I get featured at the top of the search rankings and I have attended various networking events for free, as well as free workshops on topics like marketing and web design. Then there’s the feeling of making a contribution to something bigger than one business, a rewarding feeling of doing your bit for the wider cause of supporting your local business community.”