Published: February 22, 2020 | Updated: February 22, 2020

Former MD builds specialist team to ignite business performance in Dorset and beyond

Phil Griffin, Regional Director, Tinderbox. Picture: Dorset Biz News.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

Phil Griffin is looking to set alight business performance in Dorset.

The former Managing Director of furniture insurance company Guardsman has bought the South West franchise of Tinderbox.

The business, which uses the strapline ‘Igniting Business Performance’, was founded in 2009 and targets companies with turnovers of £1m-plus.

It has helped more than 300 clients in the last 11 years and claims to have a 100 per cent success rate.

The brand is now being rolled out across the UK.

Phil, as the Dorset-based Regional Director, is covering an area which also includes Salisbury, Southampton and the South West.

But, unlike many management consultants, he is not adopting a ‘Superman’ approach and doing it alone.

A feature of the Tinderbox model is that Phil, who lives in Verwood, will be supported by a team of specialists.

He’s now hand-picking his team, ranging from experts in marketing and human resources through to cyber security, digital strategy and sales training and growth.

The major banks as well as other intermediaries, including accountancy firms, will play a large part in introducing Tinderbox to potential clients.

Typically they will organise a two hour presentation for up to 20 of their bigger clients and cover a specific business issue.

Attendees then have the option of a free two-hour meeting to discuss their challenges and see if Phil, and his team of specialists, can assist.

It could be growing their business significantly or, perhaps, improving sales and marketing performance.

Only after a proposal has been submitted, accepted and goals agreed that the assignment will get underway.

The average assignment cost is around £15,000 but the ROI (Return on Investment) can be significant, delivering £100,000-plus to the bottom line, insists Phil.

He said: “So many companies budget with a rear-view mirror.

“They look at the previous year’s performance and then add, say three per cent.

“But we’ll use our skills to identify growth areas.

“We might go for 25 per cent and end up with 20 per cent but it will still be bigger than the original three per cent.

“Our goal is to implement winning business strategies, add vital new skills and optimise business potential.

“The result is positive feedback to the introducer and a happy and more profitable client.”

Phil is now one of nine Tinderbox regional directors.

All have operated at senior level.

In Phil’s case he has nearly 30 years of commercial experience with businesses ranging from toy company Mattel through to Daler-Rowney, the manufacturer of artist’s materials, DoCrafts (paper craft) and, latterly, Guardsman UK and Europe.

Now he’s building up a business from scratch.

And he can’t wait.

Phil said: “I am absolutely passionate about helping businesses succeed.

“But I also want to assist business owners for planning when they exit one day.

“Private equity firms think about exiting from Day One.

“I want to help owners adopt the same mindset by adding value and creating a business which will continue long after they’ve gone.

“Tinderbox is a really exciting business model and I believe we can make a huge difference to companies in Dorset and beyond.”