March 2021 Meeting Shorts

Kerri McGarrigle, Chairman of Newark Business Club, opened this month’s meeting, welcoming all in her penultimate meeting as Chairman.

This month’s sponsor

Nottingham Business School sponsored this months meeting and Lynn Oxborrow & Suzanne Ross took to the virtual stage to celebrate SME support.

Lynn kicked off with news that their Small Business Leadership Programme is enrolling for 6th April. By the end of March, over 90 SMEs should be complete the programme from the first few cohorts.

A new Help To Grow: Management programme has been announced which is estimated to support 30,000 SMEs in the next 3 years around the UK. The course will cover strategy, growth, management skills and mentoring.

The Upscaler Project is designed for those businesses looking to go to that next level. 249 SMEs have already been assisted with 2,516 hours of support. Register for the celebration event on 29th March here

Women In Leadership is masters level short course that has helped 269 women leaders over 17 cohorts.

By delivering through Covid there have been some interesting observations on human behavious and responses;

Phase one – Acute uncertainty. Phase two – disruption. Phase three – adaptation. Phase four – new normal.

67% of businesses have taken on external finances. 45% of SMEs have pivoted or changed their business model. 76% envisage those changes will be permanent. For more information on some of the courses available to you, please email

Guest Panel

Following the round table networking, Lynn & Suzanne were back on stage with a panel to discuss their experiences over the past 12 months.
Katie Dearden of Oe:gen Ltd, Dr Eliza Awan of Clearview Med UK Ltd, Tracey Clarke of Virtual Administration Ltd, Lisa Davies of Get The Edge and Emma Holden of Shop Newark Online.
During the discussion, the panel shared their takeaways from the challenges of Covid. Collaborative working, staying positing, looking for new opportunities and adapting were all echoed. Simple things like showing gratitude to everyone you work with, checking in with your team and just taking care of your own well being, also featured.

guest speaker this month was Simon Akers from ARCHMON sharing some of his journey and how things aren’t always what they seem in business and life.

Life and success isn’t often a linear upward journey. There are ups and down on the way but your outward life may not reflect your inner happiness and wellbeing.

Simon’s inner wellbeing came to the forefront when his worklife was in full flow and as it crashed, he sought help from the NHS.

What he learnt was that self deception is the worst deception of all. You need to work with the reality of the situation in order to move forward.

The past 12 months, the human race has faced a new challenge. Covid-19 is the big leveler and it is bringing mental health to the forefront. Whether it is privately or publically, it’s important to keep the conversation going and to check in with other people and help each other out.

A good tip he shared, was to write down what you can and can’t control and focus on the areas you can control.

At the start of the talk, Simon asked us to share what makes us feel good. Exercise, getting outdoors, singing and just taking a break were all popular choices.

There are lots of excellent local services for help and support for your mental health so Simon would encourage you to reach out as early as possible.


The next meeting takes places on Friday 2nd April where the new Chairman will be decided