Icon Business Solutions
c/- Solution Dynamics Building
18 Canaveral Drive
P O Box 335-047
Browns Bay
North Shore City 0753
New Zealand
Ph  +64 9 912 1901


Interview with Garth Clarke of North Shore Furniture Restorations about his SuccessModelTM Business Improvement Program.

Garth approached us at an Expo and asked if we could help grow his furniture restoration business.
He was a one man operation working from his garage with a very small revenue.
We met with him and even though his business is one we would not normally look at consulting to, we could use it as a training program.
Garth was willing to invest in his business to grow it and we started on a $8600 program.
Garths enthusiasm has impressed us immensely and the improvements and huge gains in his business reflect the effort he is putting into his SMP program.

We are now at the 3 month mark and have asked Garth for an interview.

Q. What are some of the best outcomes that have been happening for you during the Success Model Plan Garth?
G. The most surprising thing for me was the increase in income that occurred from one simple change to my advertisement in the Nth Shore Times. That, more than anything else indicated to me that I was onto a good thing.

Q Are you doing the programme on your own, or are you involving others?
G. Basically on my own.

Q What are some of the things that you are enjoying, working with your Business Advisors.
G. They are making me aware of what I don't know. But, that doesn't worry me, as I am comfortable with the fact that the programme is going to supply me with the information and the education of how to get around what I don't know, and point me in the right direction to help me get the information if they can't supply it.

Q What sort of advise and solutions have your advisors given you in the programme so far?
They have given me some very interesting information on marketing procedures - many of which I would never have thought up myself.
That is what I find so exciting about the whole programme. It is opening up areas that I hadn't thought of, because of my limited experience in running the one business.
I am limited by my own experience, where as the Icon guys have far more experience in different companies so there is a lot of cross fertilization there.

Q As a business owner, what have you been learning when doing the questionnaires?
G. It is making me think more professionally about the business. It is bringing to my consciousness a lot of things that I am not doing and should be. Hopefully I will get around to doing them all. But it's also making me analyse the business in a way that I had never thought of, which is a good thing.

Q What are some of the changes that you have implemented so far, through the programme?
I have altered the way that I answer the phone, I have changed my ads and implemented a new design and branding of my advertising material.
I am more conscious of pricing the work I do properly.
I am moving into new premises, and organising what that entails with a new spray booth etc. Just a whole heap of things, but those are what spring to mind.

Q What advise would you offer to business owners looking to take on a SuccessModel Programme?
G. I'd say go for it, because everybody is an expert in some field, but we are not experts in all fields.
This programme will indicate the areas where your strengths and weaknesses are, and some of the weaknesses you may not necessarily be aware of. It will show them up and make you think about it. Then it can make you more profitable.

Q You are 3 months into your programme. Has it been successful for you so far?
G. Extremely successful.

Q Would you recommend the Success Model Programme, and would you term it as an investment for your business?
G. Yes, it is an excellent investment.
I look at it from the point of view that the money that I have invested is a lot cheaper than buying an existing business.
It is going to get me to where I want to be a lot quicker than I anticipated. In fact one of the first things that was mentioned to me was getting into premises and out of my garage.
When I started, I wasn't very optimistic at all about that occurring, but now 3 months down the track, it is all happening.

Q Thank you Garth. We will look forward to talking with you again when you have finished the programme.
G. Thank you.