As a winner of Theo Paphitis Small Business Sunday #SBS¬†award¬†Louise Barson, the author of My Life Pack¬ģ¬†attended the annual Small Business Sunday #SBSEvent on 30 Jan 2015 hosted by¬†Theo¬†and his team from Ryman Stationery having won¬†an #SBS¬†award in 2011.¬†For those of you who only know of Theo Paphitis from¬†his appearances on the BBC’s Dragon’s Den for many years, he is the chairman of Ryman¬†Stationery, owner of Robert Dyas and Boux Avenue and¬†co-owner of Red Letter Days.¬†Theo is also a passionate supporter of small businesses. He created the award #SBS in 2010 and says: “I admire people who have passion and energy. If you cannot bore your friends to death about your own small business then something is seriously wrong. I was struck by the number of business owners on Twitter who wanted to tell me about their new products and services.”
Small Business Sunday #SBS was born so that people have a specific time slot to tweet and can pitch their ‘sell’ directly to me.”¬†¬†Sunday is when Theo says he does a lot of his thinking and planning for the week ahead; a habit¬†he recommends to all¬†business owners. If you are a small business that is active on social media and wants to take part then send a tweet about your business to @TheoPaphitis between 5pm and 7.30pm on Sundays including #SBS and he announces his 6 favourite entries on Mondays at 8pm on Twitter. You get the benefit of a retweet from Theo to all his followers and access to the #SBS website and private Facebook group and an invite to the #SBS conferences as well as occasional other events.
The #SBS 2015 event was at the Conference Centre in Birmingham and provided winners a chance to network with other #SBS¬†businesses and to take part in the Q & A session and workshops – all extremely useful for a growing small business. All #SBS winners get presented with a certificate from Theo and have their photograph taken with him which is great for marketing purposes. The guest speakers this year were Judy Naake – St Tropez fake tan;¬†Julien Callede¬†from Made.com¬†“Very few business ideas will be brand new, take something and do it better” and¬†Rob Forkan from Gandy’s flip flops¬†“You don’t always need a mentor, you¬†know your business the best- you know¬†what works and what doesn’t.”
We all¬†enjoyed¬†an inspirational afternoon listening to the panel share their stories from their own businesses and take questions from the floor. Theo had earlier presented a motivational session and as usual overran as he is passionate about helping small businesses and had¬†suggestions¬†for people who had questions for him about their own businesses.¬†Theo also¬†announced¬†a fabulous¬†new #SBS winners website from¬†MetalFrog Studios¬†and other initiatives such as #SBS Angels.¬† Another inspiring day thanks to Theo and Kypros Kyprianou ¬†and the team from Ryman Stationery and¬†also networking opportunities¬†with fellow #SBS winners and potential collaborations.