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David Harris - Mentor Profile


Career Snapshot

I started business life as a chemist – in fact as a ‘Liquid Engineer’ – designing new oils for Castrol. Customer needs were central to everything there and I soon moved into a global marketing role managing the marketing planning process covering over 60 countries. This is where I developed my passion for understanding the value of a customer-centric, fact-based approach to marketing (and business as a whole).

I have spent much of my career to date in the intersection of marketing and technology. An early pioneer of the use of the internet in business, I led a number of e-business initiatives starting with Castrol’s very first website and now help businesses to choose how to use ‘digital’ for their marketplace.

While still managing global projects at Castrol, I was encouraged to start a business of my own. I co-founded an information technology company in 1997 which has now transformed into a leading regional IT services consultancy for SMEs, managed now by my co-founder.

Over the last six years I have helped a wide range of businesses in and around Oxfordshire to flourish and I am a registered and approved Growth Coach for the national GrowthAccelerator programme.

What Motivates Me?

I never tire of witnessing that ‘Eureka’ moment when a business owner – with perhaps a little nudging from me – sees the potential future value of their products or services through the eyes of their ideal customer. I enjoy bringing together people in business who never thought they could be connected.

What Is My USP?

I think my “Unique Selling Proposition” stems from that combination of technology and marketing. Having worked as a scientist, a strategist and a practitioner in a wide range of different business cultures, I can very quickly navigate a course through complex issues to help a business to succeed.

What's It Like Working with Me?

I am known for my ability to quickly understand the key elements of a business and help my clients focus on the right actions to enable growth.

Not every approach works for every business. I do expect clients to be open to difficult questions about their products and services, their customers and their ways of working.

Typical questions to trigger practical working sessions include:

  • Who is your customer? – not just their industry but as people, how do they make decisions?
  • What pain or problem are you offering to solve so well that people will pay you?
  • How will you service these customers and get them to refer you to others?
  • • How will you innovate to continue growing?

These are tailored to my clients and sometimes result in surprising outcomes well away from the original expectations - and may result in exciting new approaches to the business.

Clients have said I have a friendly and inclusive style giving them the confidence to make the best actions for the success of their business.

To request David as your Business Mentor and to arrange an initial conversation over coffee, click below.

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