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Posted by Sarah Brown on 28 Sept '15

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Inspirational people and companies we have noticed over the last seven days

Each week we like to share who has inspired us and is making a positive impact across different areas of activity:

Local business

Booths since 1847 have been running food stores that celebrate good food and service in the North of England. They have grown organically and are still a family business. They have inspired us because they have grown a sustainable business, believe in planning and want to involve their staff. This is a quote from their website:

To ensure everyone of our 3000 employees can contribute to the success of Booths, we’ve created a Five Year Plan. Having this plan ensures we all know where we’re going and how we’ll get there – and because we’re all about food here, we’ve called it the Perfect Pie. Our three goals that form our Perfect Pie are to STAY SPECIAL, GROW SALES, AND BECOME EFFICIENT


4N Business person

We met Sam Kemp (Rollins) at the 4N breakfast at the Business Networking Show. She impressed us because she has been named as a UK Top Rated Accountant by the review site VouchedFor.co.uk. Sam received this commendation due to the outstanding reviews that have been written by her clients on the VouchedFor website! This fantastic endorsement for Sam has also meant that she has featured in the UK’s Top Rated Professionals guide in the Sunday Telegraph newspaper on 29th March.

Charity/public sector person

We read about Emma Johnson in the i newspaper(full article from the independent here). She is principal of Oasis Academy Foundry and has turned it from a failing school which was half empty to a school achieving above the national average results with 40 different languages, and a waiting list.

They encourage a sense of responsibility by getting children to look after animals including two alpacas at a local farm. If children don't attend Emma or her deputy do a home visit, and when children reach the end of their primary school years she has a graduation ceremony with gowns and caps.

National business

RJ Balson Britains oldest family business celebrates 500 years of family ownership this year.. A butchers it started just six years into the reign of Henry VIII, the year before the first published account of the discovery of North America appeared and 8 years before the cocoa bean was introduced to Spain. Since then, dozens of family members have passed their butchery skills down through 25 generations. The current Master Butchers are Richard Balson and Brother-in-Law Rudi Boulay, who married Jane Boulay (nee Balson). From 1880, until this day, their shop has been in West Allington, Bridport, not far from its original location and it continues to deal in the highest quality meat, poultry and game, making their own range of speciality foods, and offering an unrivalled, old fashioned service. We were inspired because they are still entering and winning awards and adapting to the needs of the modern market now selling meat over the internet as well as from their shop.

Sports person

Lizzie Armitstead is a 26-year-old from Otley and will wear the world champion’s white jersey with rainbow bands for the next 12 months after a sensational win in Saturday’s 130-kilometre race in Richmond, Virginia.

She fulfilled a lifelong dream after a series of near misses in the World Championships, adding to her 2012 Olympic silver medal and 2014 Commonwealth Games gold, plus two successive World Cup series wins.

The Guardian reported that Armitstead was still struggling to come to terms with her achievement. She said: “I can’t get my head around it yet, really. I’m just so focused on the process all the time. Crossing the line and being world champion, I’ve always dreamt about it and now I’ve done it. It’s quite a surreal feeling, but obviously very special. Very happy.” “All the failures I’ve had in the past, ups and downs, just makes it more special.”

We were inspired by her determination to pursue her dream.

Who has inspired you? Please let us know

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Tags: i factor inspiration leadership