Growth International - organisational and personal development

What our Clients Say About Us

"I found the coaching an interesting and illuminating experience, Having the opportunity to talk through our business and identify the challenges facing it with a neutral and experienced businessman like Peter was extremely helpful. It really helped me take a new, fresh look at our organisation and identify some goals to aim for. I would highly recommend the Leadership and Management Grant Programme."

Emma Barwell, Director, SSE London

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“The training organised by Growth International gave me a good chance to stop and take stock of the business from a different angle. I found it helpful and really learned some new idea from the various skilled people who trained me. I would definitely recommend Growth International for small businesses wanting to move forward and improve themselves and their business.”

Steve Lowy, Founder, Umi Hotels

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"Despite having a very strong operational background our business needed to grow and I needed to improve my understanding of how to effectively sell our services. Peter was excellent at initially understanding where I was and what specific areas we needed to concentrate on to get the most out of the coaching. A detailed programme was constructed which included support from Martin Riddell who demonstrated some very specific sales techniques . Frank and honest, Peter allowed me to understand how I needed to adapt my passionate approach in to something more professional, something I know has assisted us to keep growing."

Andrew Philpot, Managing Director, Temco Services 

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“I was introduced to Peter through the Train to Gain scheme and found his coaching and mentoring sessions positively invaluable. I had been running a CSR company for three years but felt I was lacking direction, getting too involved in day to day activity and perhaps losing sight of where the company was going. I knew I needed to think more about the future, make some important decisions and give myself some deadlines. Peter was a great sounding board. He questioned and challenged me but also offered practical and realistic advice and ideas. He is very approachable, easy to talk to and a great listener. It is reassuring to know that he is at the end of the phone to offer continuous support. I knew Peter had an accountancy background which was very useful but I was delighted to find out that he had a genuine interest in CSR too – this made our discussions much easier as he understands what we are trying to achieve. I still meet with Peter at least once a month and on the back of our sessions we are organising a CSR workshop for SMEs later in the year.”

Sarah Smith, Managing Director, Lumina CR.

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"Within a normal working day it's extremely hard to find the time to look at the business strategically, understand what additional skills or processes you and your team need or how to structure the business more effectively. Peter and I discussed and created an approach that met the key objectives I had and that could be implemented within my own busy schedule, an approach that has been rewarding personally and for the wider business"

Gideon Karmiloff, Managing Director, Vivid Brand

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Arbor Creative

"It is with thanks to Peter's mentoring that has enabled me to gain a more holistic view of my business, which in turn has allowed me to act with a global perspective on running my various business's. I would recommend the coaching to any business wishing to accelerate their growth."

Dorian Perry, Managing Director, Arbor Creative
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Aircair

"Like a lot of SME's, we in the AIRCAIR Management team thought we where on top of our game after running a successful company for quiet some years but as the old woodcutter knows, if you don't stop and sharpen your axe every now and then, you cut down less and less trees. Peter came into our company and listened to what we thought where our needs and gaols, but soon realized there where a number of areas that needed addressing if we where to achieve our targets. He set about setting up strategy meetings with our management team and helped us to develop all aspect of our reporting from accounts to project performance and assessment. From his efforts our management team now performs with increased confidence, and this confidence is being passed to the remaining members of our staff, who in turn are working more effectively thus improving AIRCAIR's performance in the HVAC industry."

Colin Petherick, Managing Director, Aircair

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"I have enjoyed working with Peter and he has been a very useful sounding board often challenging my preformed ideas and approaching the issue from a different angle. As a business owner it is very helpful to have an independent person who is away from the business to listen and challenge. As a small business I have found the Leadership Scheme a very practical way of helping to develop top management and would recommend others to take advantage of its offer."

Jacky O'Leary, Managing Director, N1 Creative

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"The coaching and group training sessions were of a tremendous help to all the senior staff involved. What made a big difference were the initial planning meetings with Peter and his team which highlighted not only our perceived needs for the company and the individual staff members but also areas for development we had not given much consideration to due to the every day pressures of work. The company has benefited from implementing the systems and strategies and the management team are more confident and effective in their roles."

Barbara Quartey, Chief Executive, Intuition PPIMS

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"The coaching and mentoring I received under the Train to Gain Leadership and Management Grant enabled me to step back from the day-to-day operations of the business and focus on the strategic needs of the company. Peter Desmond provided me with an independent and expert sounding board to consider a number of issues that I was facing as a director a small business. I recommend coaching with Peter. He is encouraging, and consistent. With his support I’ve learned things about myself that I didn’t know, and I was showed a different approach to assess what I really want to do regarding my professional career and how prepare myself for it in terms of priorities and mental aptitude toward the goal. Thanks to his guidance I feel I have a clearer idea of where I'm going.”

Pilar Jimenez, Manager, AESA (UK)

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"I undertook Train to Gain Leadership and Management training with Peter Desmond of Growth International, and found the experience very valuable. Peter was able to focus my mind on key challenges facing our organization and challenged some basic assumptions I had held without thinking. He also helped work through some solutions with a logic and clarity that would be a luxury in the normal pressure of day-to-day management."

Frank Wingate, CEO, West London Business

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"When our Finance Director left, we needed urgent help to tide us over until we could find a new person for the position. We contacted Growth International who provided us with a part-time finance director and other resources to assist with our cash flow management. The people they provided fitted well within our corporate culture, which was very important to us."

David Brooks, Managing Director, The Inbucon Group

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"Peter Desmond, as Visiting Fellow of Richmond College, lectured on two modules of Financial and Managerial Accounting of our MBA programme to classes of up to 25 students. The approach that Peter used in lecturing is aimed at helping the students to understand how accounting techniques and principles can assist them in their future work as managers in a commercial environment. Whilst technical issues are important to grasp, the interactive approach that Peter uses with case studies and major financial analysis projects of publicly quoted companies allowed the students to bring accounting into their everyday business experience. I have been pleased to have Peter on the teching staff and hope that we can continue to develop the Accounting course in the future to ensure that our students gain meaningful and relevant instruction on a potentially dry topic."

Michael Smith, Director, Richmond American International University in London

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“Peter's enabling style of coaching provided me with a reflective and practical approach to learning about my leadership style and how I could improve it.  The benefits of our work together have been felt by both myself and my team. I look forward to working with Peter again in the future.”

Ian Barratt, Chief Executive, Institute of Management Consultancy

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"Peter Desmond worked as consultant with Business Link as Acting Head of Finance of Business Link London City Partners (BLLCP), Integration Project Manager for the integration of BLLCP with 8 other Business Links, and finally as Interim Financial Controller of Business Link for London over a four year period. He showed remarkable ability to adapt to these various roles. He provided sound financial information and advice to the management team and board. He was a good communicator at board level and supportive of other management colleagues and the staff in the teams that he led. He introduced clear management accounting structure, and embedded financial accountability with in BLLCP. He managed a turnaround in middle management attitudes leading to improved budgeting and value for money. Peter exceeded my expectations in how he contributed to the development of the business. I would both recommend him and use his services again."

Ermine Evans, ex CEO Business Link for London
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"Peter Desmond coached me during a period of significant business change for me, when I needed to plan and implement a business development strategy and to make challenging decisions. When he and I began our work together I was feeling both overwhelmed and excited about the business. Peter’s approach was goal-orientated, and I welcomed this. He facilitated me skilfully to articulate my goals so that they were specific, measurable and time-bound, and he helped me to test whether they were also achievable and realistic, while at the same time stretching me. He was always organised and prepared for the sessions. He created a safe, supportive, non-judgmental space in which I was able to articulate my concerns and confusions, and indeed feel happy about the issues they involved. He both brought his considerable business experience and insights to ensure that my judgments and plans remained realistic, and reflected back what he was hearing from me, which gave me new clarity and perspectives, and the confidence to tackle challenges in new ways. He helped me explore more possibilities, and in a more expansive way, than I would have done on my own. He applied techniques selectively and in a way which was appropriate for specific circumstances. With Peter’s support I became more aware of my motivations and drivers, and felt I was really sorting my issues, not simply arbitrarily, but knowing how and why I was making my choices, with a medium-term perspective as well as a short-term perspective. Peter was completely empathetic to my agenda and my style: the methods he applied tapped in to my approach and were therefore very meaningful for me. He combines clarity with empathy, and is a good listener. I achieved my goals in every respect, and furthermore felt more confident and purposeful about the direction I wanted to take my business in. The impact of that, in turn, was felt in every business function, and in the increased efficiency which resulted. The learning which I drew enabled me to change the way I approached all business situations by being more focused on priorities."

Lindsay Wittenberg, Executive and Career Coach