Is your organisation at a turning point?

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Your organisation is struggling to reach its potential.

Organisations focused on their community or members seem to be getting busier and busier. People are expecting more and more. Technology is changing fast, and the demands on your people are increasing. You just feel like there’s so much you could achieve but you’re not making the most of the opportunities in front of you.

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A restructure or funding change is on the horizon.

Your organisation is at a big turning point. Perhaps a restructure is on the cards. Or maybe you live and die by one contract and it’s up for renewal soon. Or it might be that your parent organisation or a key partner is pushing for a merger. Either way, you don’t want to lose your autonomy or your best people.

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Your way of working feels out-of-date.

Technology has totally changed what’s possible for your organisation. But you’re still structured like a 20th century industrial factory. Top-down decision-making. Rigid processes. Controlled information flows. These ways of working are slowing you down. And stopping your organisation from reaching its potential.


It can be both exciting and scary when your organisation reaches one of these turning points.

It’s a chance to reset your course. To grasp hold of some big exciting opportunities.
To say “Hell yes!” to a new direction.

But you also need to say “No thanks” to other priorities. Because if you don’t have a clear direction,
your rudderless ship will eventually keel over.

It’s time to renew your organisation.



Your people and your community can be your saving grace - if you let them.

Nelson Arts Festival Implementation Event - Brent setting the scene

As a successful organisation, you have one thing keeping you ahead of the game - your people. Not just your dedicated staff. But also your supporters in other organisations and the wider community.

You’re well networked. You have years of goodwill in the bank. People know you and they want to see you succeed. Now’s the time to tap into that strength.

Of course, you could set a new direction in a small room over a long meeting with just a few key people.

But what happens when you share that plan with everybody? They certainly won’t feel like they own it. And if people don’t own a plan, they’re much less likely to act on it.

We can help you engage your staff, your key stakeholders and your wider community of interest.

Give them the chance to share their wisdom and their ideas. You’ll be amazed at the energy this creates. You’ll be surprised by the ideas people have been holding onto. And you’ll be relieved when we structure their input into a way that’s designed to get things done.


Create a new direction in collaboration
with your staff and key stakeholders.

Our experience in strategy will make sure you focus on the right long-term goals with simple steps to move forward. After our process is done, you’ll have a set of agreed priorities and some clear steps to take. Plus, you’ll know who is willing to contribute their time and energy to make things happen.


“Some of the Board were worried their voice would be lost in the community engagement.”

For a Board or Senior Leadership Team, it can be nerve-wracking to engage your staff and key stakeholders.

They’ll have unrealistic expectations.

We’ll be overwhelmed with ideas.

It’ll just open the door to criticism and negativity.

Our process won’t allow that to happen.

We’ll create a structured engagement plan so you retain control over the overall process. Before doing anything else, we’ll agree an overall process with your Board. Then we’ll work with you to create a targeted list of key stakeholders for the engagement. We won’t involve anybody without your approval.

Our experience as an independent facilitator will ensure you end up with a direction and plan that gives you confidence about the future.

Nelson Arts Festival Planning Event
Sarah Yarrow
The Board found there was huge alignment between their views and the community’s. The process has given us alignment with the community and a mandate to act. That’s really powerful.
— Sarah Yarrow, Trustee, Nelson Festivals Trust

“At first we just didn’t think we had the time for a process like this.

It’s stressful when your organisation is at a turning point. You’re sprinting just to keep up. You don’t need something else to organise and worry about.

But our clients tell us how relieved they are once the process is done.

They have a clear direction and focus, which often means they have less to do - not more.

And they tell us how we made it easy for them. We do the legwork and keep everybody in the loop. This leaves you free to focus on people and ideas.

It was extremely helpful to have Business Lab holding our hand through the handover as it was a new way of working. Their communication helped us to lead the process. They always kept notes and reminded us about who we needed to communicate with and when.
— Sarah Yarrow, Trustee, Nelson Festivals Trust
Nelson Arts Festival Implementation Event

“We didn’t want to feel like we were being processed”

Facilitators are all about processes. At 2am we’ll be awake trying to decide whether to use this process or that one.

Some facilitators waste people’s previous attention on complicated processes.

We don’t.

When your organisation is at a turning point, we keep things simple so you can focus on actually making decisions and taking action together.

Colin on the whiteboard
The Business Lab team were just so natural as facilitators. I’ve worked with others where they ‘facilitate’ and are obviously using techniques. They were just natural, just themselves. We haven’t felt like we’ve been processed!
— Sarah Yarrow, Trustee, Nelson Festivals Trust


Set a new direction that inspires action.


We could go on for hours about the benefits of engaging your community and stakeholders in your strategy and planning. But you’re time poor.

So let’s sum up what you’ll gain:

  • Your organisation will have a clear plan of action with a small number of key priorities

  • Your staff motivation will increase because they’ll feel valued through being involved in high-level decisions

  • You’ll develop partnerships with key stakeholders who want to contribute to your mission

  • You’ll stop losing sleep over your organisation’s future direction.

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Just a quick note. We have limited availability in our calendar due to several ongoing projects. It’s best to get in touch with 2-3 months before you want your engagement process to begin so we can carefully map it out with you.