Getting to know: Richard Bosworth

What do you currently do?
I’m a business strategist who runs What If? Forums for owner managed and family run businesses from wide ranging sectors – helping them to boost their effectiveness and business performance so they can enjoy life more

What is your inspiration in the business?
Seeing how I can really focus my members on what is important and watching their businesses grow from strength to strength as a result of doing this. It’s particularly rewarding to enable them to work ‘on’ as opposed to ‘in’ their enterprises. Once they’ve cracked this – there’s no stopping them.

Who do you admire?
Warren Buffet’s value investing criteria – a checklist of how a business would look to an investor. The list asks questions about key areas such as the company’s ability to generate cash (value), if it is simple and understandable, if it has a consistent operation history along with its long-term prospects.

Looking back are there things you would have done differently?
Establishing sooner the areas where I add value in my members’ eyes – because they can be very different from what you think. I also wish I had identified and promoted the competitive advantages of the Forums – giving customers the distinct, demonstrable reasons for choosing us over the competition.

What defines your way of doing business?
Begin with the end in mind – have a life plan for yourself and know what you need the business to deliver for you to realise this life plan. Stick to your goals and start planning for your exit five years in advance.

What advice would you give to someone starting out?
Create a simple one page plan which answers five basic questions: What is your winning aspiration? Where will you compete? How will you win? What capabilities need to be in place and when? – and what management systems you need to launch and sustain.
What If Forums