October Peer Group - Winning Strategy

Business 101 – Making Strategy Work
A pragmatic and simplified approach to developing a strategy that aligns with day-to-day activity.

We are all constantly faced with an ever changing set of challenges and opportunities. Without having a formal plan or end goal in sight there is a risk that we simply allow ourselves to be buffeted by events and not create the time to determine whether or not we are heading where we really want to go.
The Strategy Cycle introduces a number of key disciplines and tools which underpins an understandable and accessible model which will drive not only the creation of the vision but allow the team to execute against that vision, thus delivering the ultimate goal as defined by you and your company.

Gary believes in a simple philosophy, THINK, PLAN, DO and each stage of his 8 step process is designed to ensure that all aspects provide a cohesive thought process, an action plan and most importantly an effective way of executing against that detailed action plan.
This model is not theoretical but a practical tool which can be used to align your business vision with daily activity.


Utilising the Strategy Cycle to enable;

  • The alignment of personal goals and business goals
  • Confirmation that your business core competencies match your strategic deliverables.
  • The alignment of both the skills and finances to execute the strategy
  • Communication to your staff to help them share your vision and become motivated to help support the business in getting there.
  • The creation of a road map that can be broken down into measurable stages to execute your vision.
  • The alignment of your strategy and daily tasks; STRATEGY = DAILY ACTIVITY x TIME


Take-away – an easily understood, methodical business process and a range of tools which you can apply to pragmatically deliver success as defined by you. This session allows you to build a simple blueprint for running your business.

Why You Should Attend – At a Glance

The October event,  includes a keynote from Technology Business Strategy expert Gary Weston.

Attendance is free.

It is free to attend either or both sessions. If you wish to stay overnight and join us for dinner Tuesday evening, the hotel are offering dinner, bed & breakfast deals for £120 + VAT – purely optional on your part.

Key Details

Tue 3 October 15:30-late

Wed 4 October 08:30-13:30
(Attend 1 or both sessions)


Highgate House
Grooms Lane

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About Gary Weston

Gary Weston is passionate about business, about the often unrealised potential that companies and their staffs have lurking just under the surface, waiting for a catalyst to send them on a journey of discovery and growth. He developed his approach to helping and working with SME’s as the continuation of a highly successful corporate career which saw him operate in several continents (including North America, Asia and Europe) and across a wide range of industries (including heavy engineering, electronics, print and electronic directories, telecoms cabling, FMCG, software development, digital media, wholesale/retail operations and CG animation to name but a few).

The scale of these businesses ranges from start-ups with revenues of less than £150K to multi-nationals shipping products in excess of £2.5B per annum and everything in between. He has been involved in 4 start-ups and in 3 closures and at one point was responsible for thousands of employees across 9 sites in India, North America and the UK.

Gary is a successful business coach, speaker, interim manager and NXD at board level for a number of SME companies and most recently as a Strategic Consultant with Scottish Enterprise, delivering a methodology for creating and implementing growth strategies – the Symbiotic Strategy Cycle.

Gary holds an honours degree in Manufacturing Engineering & Management and an MBA from Strathclyde University and Business School. He is also an Accredited Business Coach and a Member of the International Coaching Federation.

Wierd Fact
For 10 years he Captained the Scottish National Paintball team playing professionally in Europe and the USA. Go figure?


Panel Session – GDPR in the IT/Software Industry: A Threat or Opportunity?

Threat or Opportunity? –  in most situations, both!

Our Panel will answer your questions on GDPR. A valuable opportunity to refine your business strategy to leverage GDPR.

Ed Wright – Shakespeare Martineau LLP

Ed works with clients from all sectors (including life sciences and technology, media and telecoms) on wide-ranging non-contentious commercial, contractual, IP, ICT, e-commerce, data protection, competition and public procurement law issues.

He advises on IP creation, ownership, protection and exploitation, including technology transfers, R&D collaborations and agency, distribution/reselling and franchising arrangements.

Ed has a keen interest in drafting/advising on IP licensing arrangements and, whenever possible, presents and writes on topical commercial and/or IP matters.

Clients consider Ed to be very approachable, intelligent and commercial.

Simon Ghent – Fifth Square

Simon delivers white labelled Data Security and Privacy Consultancy to forward looking MSPs.

Simon has over 20 years’ experience in IT and Telecom consultancy, project management and implementation. In 2010, he established a cloud focused MSP in the East Midlands. After experiencing rapid growth, he sold the business in 2015.

Following 2 years of Business Consultancy he launched a range of services specifically designed to assist organisations assess, prepare and maintain demonstrable compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and best practice.

Simon is a member of the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) and is an ANSI/ISO accredited Certified Information Privacy Professional/Europe (CIPP/E) and a Certified Information Privacy Professional/Management (CIPM). In addition, he is certified as a Cyber Essentials Assessor and certification body through IASME.

Matt Leipnik – Founder, Chalk Circle Ltd

Matt is an Entrepreneur and Information Security Specialist. In 2010 he founded Chalk Circle, a Cyber Security Consultancy and Managed Services Provider based in the South-East of England. Matt has also overseen the technology strategy, systems and infrastructure to enable the Digital Catapult to rapidly accelerate the best digital ideas in the UK to market.
In his previous role at Tata Communications, Matt was Director of Managed Security Services Engineering, where he built Tata’s next generation cloud security platform and provided security for Jaguar Land Rover One and Formula 1.  One of his key interests is human interaction with technology and design. Matt is a business mentor for the Kent Foundation and runs the Elevate Business Network, a young entrepreneurs meetup.

Detailed Agenda

Day 1 – Tuesday 3rd October

3:30pm – 4:00 pm: Registration

4:00pm to 6:00pm: Peer Group Session: Common Business Issues

7:00pm to 7:30pm: Networking in the bar

7:30pm on – Working Dinner: Panel Session – GDPR – Threat or Opportunity

Day 2: Wednesday 4th October

08:30 am – 12:30 pm: Gary Weston – Winning Strategy

12:30 pm – 1:30 pm: Lunch

1:30pm: End – back to the office

Attendance is FREE.

It is free to attend either or both sessions. If you wish to stay overnight and join us for dinner Tuesday evening, the hotel are offering dinner, bed & breakfast deals for £120 + VAT – purely optional on your part.