I’ve spent the last 20 years trying to work out what it is that makes a businesses work and how to galvanise teams to make impactful ideas happen.

When I was in the British Youth Windsurfing Team, I had a coach (using the same coaching models as used with Sir Ben Ainslie), who accelerated my understanding of the importance of mindset and systems.

This systems approach was cemented during my Masters in Mechanical Engineering and I’ve put it to work scaling five startups since 2001, the largest to over 40 people and £12m ($20m) turnover with exit.

Why does the above matter?

It’s taken me since I was in my teens to understand that a business will have a natural rhythm and formula to make it hum. As a leader, you must try to understand this through key attributes that all scalable businesses have.

  • The first, is mindset. Has Henry Ford so brilliantly said “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right”
  • The second is trust, formed through clarity of vision and values.
  • The third is accountability, and clear objectives, with a team willing to challenging the status quo.
  • Finally, it’s the processes and systems that hold the above together and allows for continual improvement over time. 

Get these right, and you’ve built a rocket.


Entrepreneurs especially so. This is me arriving on the north shores of France near Calais back in 2003, unofficially the first person to windsurf the English channel (1hr 24mins). We all have a journey to travel. I could not have done this without my support team. The windsurfing was the easy part (other than navigating the cargo ships in the world’s busiest shipping lane). It took six months of planning, and waiting for the right conditions & a few failed attempts. Not dissimilar to running a business!


I was extremely lucky to be invited to Necker back in 2016. We did business brainstorming in the morning for Virgin Unite and we got to kitesurf in the afternoon with Sir Richard.

The most important learning I had from my experience was that ‘if you want to go fast, go alone, if you want to go far, go as a team’. We discussed nurturing your partnerships (both business & life) so all are elevated, working in collaboration not competition. Journey together & enjoy the journey.