CASE STUDY: Outback Whips and Leather
Nov 3 2016
You’re never too small to benefit.
I spend a lot of time talking to the delegates at Global Business Camp each year and quite often I’ll hear the same thing – ‘I was nervous about coming, I’m just a small business trying to get by and wasn’t sure if I’d be in over my head at a ‘business camp’!
But without fail, come the end of the Global Business Camp, those small business owners are thrilled with the decision to attend and take away a wealth of knowledge, practical advice and tools to implement and grow their businesses.
This was no different for Ron and Liz Hill, owners of Outback Whips and Leather – a retail store and leathergoods manufacturing business based in Broken Hill.
Ron and Liz opened Outback Whips and Leather in 2002 with no greater intentions than establishing a job for themselves that would put bread and butter on the table. Needless to say they were not prepared for what lay ahead.
With little start-up capital and minimal financial backing they were behind the eight ball before they had started let alone being in a position to control the greater than 60% growth that they experienced in the first couple of years.
Ron and Liz were in trouble and drowning in their own success. They had a very clear vision of what they wanted the business to be, but they were in over their heads – they didn’t have control of the business, it was controlling them.
Ron and Liz took the first step and found an accountant who cherished their core values and became a strong business advisor who worked side by side with them. They stayed focussed on their beliefs in being different, focussing on customer service, doing the little things and doing them right. The very things a lot of other businesses were scoffing at, the very things a number of large retail chains were going away from.
About 2010 their accountant suggested they attend Global Business Camp; they argued they could not afford it, but under duress, agreed to register for the next camp.
“Wow, if there is one thing that stands out as a turning point in our business it would have to be that camp that year.”
Ron and Liz knew they had a good business, they knew they had a good team but the Global Business Camp gave them the tools and confidence to build an award winning business and a great team.
So much so, that Ron and Liz have now attended 4 Business Camps and their senior staff have attended at least once each.
“Whilst the camp is tailored to business owners, it gave our staff the confidence to make decisions, to understand the complexities of running a business and take ownership of not only their jobs but the business as a whole.”
Ron and Liz plan on sending their staff to the camp on a regular basis, not just as a great training tool but as a great motivational exercise.
“It is amazing what your staff can do if you give them the right training, the right tools and believe in them. After three Business Camps I realised I was holding my business back. When I let go and involved my team we really started to grow. My retail store now runs without us.”
In 2016, Ron and Liz opened a second outlet and workshop in a different regional city. This opportunity arose from them allowing their staff to learn, grow and flourish within the retail store in Broken Hill. It was running smoothly without them which then allowed them to look beyond Broken Hill and determine what the next step was for growth within the business.
“If you think that these training camps and opportunities are only for big business, for companies with large staff numbers, you are wrong. We are a small retail store and saddlery manufacturer with a total staff, including Liz and I, of 5, operating in the most remote part of N.S.W.”
The proof of their success shows – Outback Whips and Leather is now one of the most awarded businesses in the western division of N.S.W. Awarded at the Far West Regional Business Awards in both 2014 and 2015, they currently sit as finalists in 5 categories in 2016 . Add to this their 2 Retail Tourism Awards and the mantle is starting to fill up!
“John Tsoulos and Global Business Camps inspired us to grow, gave us the tools and training to manage our business and the confidence to believe in ourselves.”
Ron strongly believes that without the knowledge and motivation, gleaned from each Global Business Camp, they would have probably been out of business by now simply because they didn’t have the tools and guidance to manage and grow their business.
“Whilst businesses close around us regularly and we are told that times are tough our business continues to grow. No matter what size your business; no matter what you sell I encourage you without hesitation to attend Global Business Camp. It will make a difference and may just be the best three days you have ever spent working on your business.”
It is great to hear such a story of success from a Regional business. Ron and Liz took the leap to remove themselves from their business for a few days, invest the money to grow their knowledge and they have never looked back.
Take the next step – this is the Business Camp that will drive you forward on the path to financial freedom.