Business leaders from Oxfordshire and beyond have shared their insights and advice on the latest industry challenges in the second series of hit business podcast, OxTalks.
The second series of OxTalks, powered by the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (OxLEP) and sponsored by leading national law firm, Mills & Reeve, delves into some of the biggest questions in business – including what makes a good leader and how to break through stereotypes of an entrepreneur.
To support organisations in navigating current business challenges – whether a start-up, SME or multinational – host and experienced broadcaster, Howard Bentham, seeks out guests’ expert advice to find solutions to common problems.
Leadership: Nature vs nurture
In the first episode of series two, Daniel Geoghegan, Chief Executive of Bicester Motion and Bicester Heritage, shared his top tips to help businesses develop their leadership capabilities and nurture leaders of the future.
Daniel emphasised the importance of shared values, encouraging business leaders to make sure their organisation’s values were clear and adopted across their entire workforce. By ensuring values are taken on board by the whole team, those who are passionate about taking the business mission forward will emerge as future leaders.
For leaders to emerge, they must also be nurtured. Current business leaders should consider what support different members of their team need, and listen to what they want, too – being open to change and providing tailored support programmes motivates employees to succeed.
Starting a business: Feasible vs fantasy
Fiona Reid shared her advice on how to start a business and become a successful entrepreneur in the second episode of the series. As Associate Professor of Bioscience Entrepreneurship at UCL, and the founder and former Executive Director of the Oxford Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Fiona is well versed when it comes to the topic of entrepreneurship.
Sharing her expertise, Fiona noted that space is a key factor in determining the success of an entrepreneur. Giving yourself the space to communicate ideas, and listen to others’ advice, will help your business to flourish. Space is also important when it comes to organisation – allowing yourself the time to plan, but also leaving room for flexibility.
Personal brand: The importance of reputation
In the third episode, multi-award-winning photographer and founder of Paul Wilkinson Photography, Paul Wilkinson, sat down with Howard to discuss the steps to building a personal brand. For start-ups, it is essential to engage with the right people, and hold onto these relationships – as you never know when you might later find yourself needing advice from that person or organisation.
By maintaining good relationships with the right people, business owners can keep a good reputation. Paul shared a reminder that reputation isn’t formed from just one person’s view – it’s a collective thing. Therefore, you have to make sure you do your absolute best every single day, to build a reliable and authentic brand.
OxLEP’s Chief Executive, Nigel Tipple, said: “The second series of OxTalks is now in full swing and we’ve welcomed some fantastic local leaders onto the podcast to share their experience and learnings from careers in business – from the importance of keeping a good reputation to tackling stereotypes of entrepreneurs.
“We’re looking forward to continuing the series in the new year with the support of our sponsors Mills & Reeve, to bring you an exciting line-up of guests who will delve into topics such as how to motivate your workforce, creating a valuable training programme and opportunities in the Oxfordshire innovation sector.
“Please do tune in to the second series of OxTalks for more insightful conversations with host, Howard Bentham.”
OxLEP and Mills & Reeve are committed to driving the growth of Oxfordshire’s economy and are both involved in some of the county’s most exciting and impactful projects at the heart of the local community.
For more invaluable insights, the second series of OxTalks will return on Monday 8th January 2024, with brand new guests.
OxTalks is available on all streaming platforms, so tune in wherever you get your podcasts, or visit: https://www.oxfordshirelep.com/oxtalks.