Business Support

Jen Braithwaite

What was your background before becoming an adviser and what industry experience do you have?

I have a background in primary education, hospitality and learning & development – spending the last decade before setting up my own consultancy working for a global people development agency HQ’d in the Lakes.

Having a broad experience has enabled me to develop my skills, knowledge and understanding as an Advisor, giving me a brilliant base from which to support my clients.

Areas of specialism/interest

My areas of specialism are sales and marketing, along with personal development & wellbeing. I have a huge passion for sustainability, aiming for a carbon neutral business model myself and supporting others to achieve the same.

Why did you become a business adviser? How long have you been an adviser/self employed?

I set up JB Consulting in January 2020, after support through the BSUS programme.

In the grand scheme of things, I’ve not been an Advisor for very long, coming on board September 2020. I really wanted to be part of this brilliant organisation as I know how incredibly beneficial it has been to me and others. I’m here to spread the word and bring on board as many Cumbrian businesses as I can!

What do you most enjoy about the role?

I love the diversity of the Advisor role. I’m lucky enough to be part of the BSUS and Growth Hub programmes, so I see everyone from brand new businesses just finding their feet, to those who are more established. My clients are from lots of different sectors and all need something different from me – I empower them to thrive within their own organisation and into their personal lives. Everyone leaves my sessions feeling good about themselves and the day/week ahead.

Your biggest success to date as an adviser?

Each and every client has their own markers for success and my job is to help everyone achieve those goals and thrive professionally. My biggest success stories are the continued successes of my clients.

What have you learned being an adviser?

Where do I start?! I’m continually learning in this role, both from my clients and from the amazing network of other advisors. Each session teaches me something new and I don’t know where I’d be without the support and learning I receive from Lesley and Paul; they go above and beyond for all of us.

What type of businesses have been able to support and what support did you offer?

As a BSUS Advisor I’ve supported businesses in a variety of sectors, from construction to retail, fundraising to videography & audio-visual freelancers. As a GH Advisor my clients include electrical engineering organisations, PR and marketing companies, all looking to develop their B2B models and strategies.

Each client needs something different from me and I tailor each session accordingly, whilst working collaboratively with clients on a bigger business strategy.
Whilst most of our focus tends to be on sales, productivity and business growth, I also offer support for marketing, supply chain/tendering for work, people development and more general business advice.

Most of all I’m here to listen and to support clients to excel and to thrive, whatever the circumstances.

3 interesting facts about you

  • I love the outdoors! I spend as much time as possible enjoying the beautiful place where I live – with clients, my family, friends, or on my own. Forest bathing is my favourite thing to do when I need some inner peace… and there’s nothing quite like a glass of wine in the garden with good friends!
  • I’m a mum first and foremost. A large part of becoming self-employed was to give me more time to spend with my daughter and work-life balance is something I’m really passionate about for myself, my friends and my clients.
  • I absolutely LOVE Dolly Parton. She’s a role model to me in terms of business sense, giving back to her community and treating people with kindness – she’s also my favourite to sing along with in the car!