Byron Cole & Bianca Miller-Cole
Self Made is a truly definitive guide; a “Go-To” book for all entrepreneurs at any stage of business.
This authoritative, focused guide by two of the UK’s brightest young entrepreneurs – The Apprentice runner-up, Bianca Miller-Cole and serial entrepreneur, Byron Cole – is a comprehensive toolkit for anyone who wants to make a success of running their own business.
Featuring interviews with well known entrepreneurs, entertainers and industry experts, the book covers every tier of the business development process, from start-up to exit, offering practical, implementable and global advice on the start up process.
Bianca Miller-Cole is an award-winning entrepreneur, workshop facilitator and public speaker.
In 2012, Bianca started her first business ‘The Be Group’ to provide a 360 degree personal branding solution to individuals and organisations, to assist them in identifying and analysing the impact of marketing oneself on their career trajectory.
In 2014, Bianca was the runner-up on The Apprentice, the BBC television series in which candidates compete in front of millions of viewers to go into business partnership with multi-millionaire tycoon, Lord Sugar. In 2015, Bianca launched innovative hosiery & fashion brand, Bianca Miller London which has since been retailed in Topshop, QVC, Morleys department stores etc. She is an in-demand public speaker and was awarded a Power Profile by Linked in 2016 for being one of the ten most influential people on the networking site.
Bianca’s client list reads like the whose who of global businesses and includes the likes of Accenture, EY, PWC, HSBC, Barclays, Mercer, Olswang LLP, KPMG, BNY Mellon, LSE, Kings College London, Nominet and Microsoft etc.
Byron Cole is an award-winning serial entrepreneur, public speaker, investor, philanthropist and mentor to entrepreneurs and students.
In a career spanning almost a decade, he has been intimately involved in 12 business start-ups as a director, investor or shareholder. Byron currently acts as a consultant to Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and several other businesses – across various industries – at the start of their journey. His specialism lies in advising and assisting SMEs that have commenced trading, but which are not yet generating revenue.
Byron’s success in business is an authentic ‘rags-to-riches’ story, if ever one was told. From growing up on largest council estate in Europe to starting one of his first businesses out in a small office in Surrey, which was barely large enough to accommodate more than one desk, Byron’s fledgling company has grown exponentially.
SELF MADE BOOK FORWARD
As I begin this foreword it is only fair that I declare a strong bias in favour of Bianca Miller – Cole. I first encountered Bianca when she successfully applied to be one of the candidates on The Apprentice. She excelled throughout the gruelling 12 week process and was hugely impressive during the interview episode with her calm manner, professionalism, well-structured business plan and an ability to articulate her proposal.
It was therefore no surprise to me when Bianca launched her business and it has been a pleasure to observe from afar how she developed and adjusted her business plan, overcame obstacles and now has a business that is going from strength to strength. I wish her and Byron continued success. The Definitive Guide to Start-up Business Success is a pretty bold statement, and to embark on a book with that title is surely something of a stretch. I therefore read the manuscript with a certain degree of scepticism and a sense of foreboding that Bianca and Byron had taken leave of their senses!
After all the only way to really understand about being your own boss and launching a business, is to actually go out and do it. In reading the book, I immediately warmed to it. I enjoyed the anecdotes and was able to relate to many of them, these were peppered with real life experiences and frank advice. I began to find it compelling reading, and my thoughts turned to how much I might have benefited from such a book before embarking on my career in business; I would surely have avoided some of the more common mistakes.
The book is presented in a clear, logical, and very readable format, simplifying and explaining company and business jargon. There are some really valuable nuggets to help you map out your business, address the matter of gaining access to sources of finance, building your brand and using networking to best advantage. Indeed, the book is so comprehensive and well researched that it leaves no stone unturned in its effort to live up to its title. In my opinion is does exactly what is says on the front cover!
Anyone who has started a business knows that is can be a tough and lonely existence. You need to be resilient, single-minded, adaptable and lucky! In the journey to become ‘Self Made’ there is no-one to blame but yourself if things go ‘off the rails’, however the massive sense of satisfaction, and relief, when business picks up and you gain confidence is absolutely exhilarating.
The thing about business is that it is dynamic, and what has worked today, may not work tomorrow! Self Made: The Definitive Guide to Start-up Business Success identifies the skills required no matter what the change in landscape; qualities such as being inquisitive, asking questions, listening to the answers, spotting trends, business opportunities and learning from your own experience and those of others.
I can now summaries my thoughts. Read the book, you won’t be disappointed.
Claude Littner – May 2017
Entrepreneur & Author of ‘Single Minded’, Adviser to Lord Sugar on The Apprentice
I am very excited about this book. It is beyond brilliant and much needed as it covers absolutely everything you need to know when setting up a business – there is even a chapter on mindset which is so important. I really wish this book was around when I started my ventures.
Founder of Make Your Words Work, Co-founder of Flock GlobalTM,
Broadcaster, Creative-in-Residence at King’s College London.
Ten years ago I started a charity to help young people from underserved communities to set up their own businesses. Over 270 business started as a result, yet we still see people confused about what business is all about. The world around us is changing. Rapidly. Jobs for life are a distant memory and the fourth industrial technology revolution threatens many roles that many have traditionally used as initial steps into the world of work. For many this is a scary development, but for those who will see these inevitable developments as a chance to traverse the entrepreneurial road less travelled, it opens the door to thinking about starting their own business.
What Bianca and Byron have provided in their comprehensive guide to starting up a business, is an easy to follow but detailed roadmap of things that the aspiring business owner should consider. Additionally, for those who have already begun the journey the guide offers insights that can help their business go to the next stage. As the world continues to change, the need for helpful and sage advice increases. The definitive guide to business start up success does what it says on the tin and adds to the much needed information for the next generation of successful business owners.
Entrepreneur and Winner of BBC The Apprentice 2005
Successful entrepreneurs learn fast. Self Made is a fantastic way to learn an incredible amount of hugely practical information very, very quickly..
Co-founder of Shazam, investor and business consultant
This book offers practical advice for anyone thinking of starting, growing or scaling their own business. The format is very user-friendly and allows business people to reflect and think about the importance of getting the foundations right before jumping into the world of entrepreneurship. Working for the UK’s largest supporter of SMEs, I am confident that many of our customers and other aspiring entrepreneurs will benefit from Bianca and Byron’s personal experience.
Head of Entrepreneurship, Royal Bank of Scotland, NatWest and Ulster Bank