cape town Archives | Spillly

Culling And Stacking Staff – Your Vitality Curves.

By Business Coaching Consulting Hiring No Comments

Every single business needs a great level of attention paid to retaining the right staff and culling those that don’t fit the ideal avatar of a suitable employee.

It can certainly be a difficult or tough process to undergo, but in order for your business to be as successful and as progressive as possible, there needs to be a level of measurement applied that will determine which staff contribute the most and those that are the most destructive to your company.

And in coming to terms with those that don’t bring any value, that are a weak culture-fit and that simply can’t grow – you need to get that rifle locked and loaded and begin hunting.

Rifles Ready; It’s Time To Go Hunting 

As a business coach that comes into contact with so many different businesses and entrepreneurs, there’s always an apparent vitality curve that needs evaluation and consideration.

Within the vitality curve you always find a small percentage of employees, around 10%, that sit on the edge with no value to bring to the company; these employees tend to be a bad fit in both productivity and culture. While they work at a slow pace, with low-output and a distinct inability to get certain responsibilities done, these members of staff are to be considered problematic for the healthy operation of your business and need to be pushed out.

The greater portion of the curve, which is generally around 70-80%, will be the staff that perform at an average rate and do the job well-enough to have the business operate effectively. These employees generally make up the majority of your business and keep it functioning at a healthy level without hassles and the requirement to possibly terminate them. I recommend training, motivating and incentivising those that fit in this category.

And finally, you’ll find on the other end of the curve your company’s top performers, also around 10%, which drive your business in the right direction and bring better profits, efficiency and promise. These employees should be treated with a higher level of respect and should be compensated, accordingly. Give these staff members great incentives, prizes and/or motivation to keep doing an amazing job.

When it comes to dealing with the bottom 10%, your poor performers, then it’s recommended that you find ways to get rid of them, either by firing or working them out of the system.

As criticised and difficult as this method might be, you need to cull this group of non-performers, as they act as leeches to the company – constantly feeding off of your business and never bringing anything to the table.

The former CEO of General Electric, Jack Welch, is famous for doing exactly that; firing and getting rid of the bottom 10% of performers on a yearly basis, keeping his top 20% of performers incentivised and motivated, while coaching and training the other 70% in order for them to keep developing and progressing in the business.

Even with a strong defense and great interview approach, there will always be a few rotten eggs that end up in any business, so it’s helpful to divide, categorise and select those that need better incentives, more training or to be culled.

This method is quite popular in some of the biggest companies out there and is often referred to as “rank and yank”, where employees are ranked and yanked out according to how well or poorly they are performing. It ultimately makes way for a better performance culture and the overall efficiency of the business.

It’s Not Always Fun, But It Needs To Be Done

 Obviously it takes up loads of time and energy to proactively get rid of staff and ensure that you’re constantly evaluating which of them make a good fit every year, but you’ll come to see that it becomes a necessary evil.

While it can be highly criticised and seem like a harsh route to take, your business will reap the many benefits that come with a strong, determined and high-functioning environment of performers that have what it takes to keep you on a trajectory of growth.

Keep in mind that you’re not being vindictive or malicious, but rather keeping your company’s best interests at heart.

In the belief that everybody deserves a second chance, you are more than welcome to act on that and give every employee a chance to improve and deliver on expectations. Offer training, coaching and advice to help bring about a change in attitude and if it doesn’t work, then you know that your rifle is in arm’s reach and ready to fire.

Remember that you also might run into dishonest and malevolent employees that might not necessarily deserve second and third chances, but that should be fired and replaced by someone with more promise and that will appreciate the opportunity to work for you.

Also, be open to creating an environment that takes care of average employees by training them and giving them the opportunity to grow in the company. This keeps them hungry and motivated to reach the status of a top performer and will most certainly bring positive results.

Finding difficulty in taking aim of the staff that need culling is a common occurrence and you don’t need to worry, because I’m here to help you with that (and a whole lot more). My coaching services include rifles and ammunition, along with the tracking techniques to sniff out and determine those who are detrimental to your business. Let me in and I’ll show you how it’s done.

We can meet via Zoom call, face-to-face, at the shooting range, or even a traditional phone call will work wonders. Let me know how I can help you:

+2783 253 3339


Bullwhipping The Sales Machine Out Of You!

By Business Coaching Entrepreneur Sales No Comments

Thinking back to some old-school (and brilliant) pop culture, Indiana Jones definitely comes to mind. Such a legendary character that brought true action and adventure into our hearts that satiated our imaginations with all the right choices. Ah, the nostalgia.

One of my favourite trilogies of all time (of course, they had to butcher it and turn it into a pentalogy, with a fifth being introduced in 2022), I was hooked like a salmon to a treble hook and was in total awe of his ability to use the bullwhip like a proper Spanish Vaquero.

Using that bullwhip effectively is no easy task and understanding how it works will add a bit of bulk to the analogy I’ll be providing for you today.

My Whip Is Longer Than Your Whip 

In those years, when cowboys mattered, the size of the bullwhip determined the strength and ability of those capable of wielding such a responsibility. The bigger the whip, the stronger you were; not to be mistaken with small-dick syndrome and the overcompensation that comes with having the most expensive, phallic-shaped car possible.

By using it as an analogy for sales and referrals, you need to be aware of what it does and how it works.

Being quite a difficult process to get started, there needs to be a lot of work and strength put into initiating the circular motion that will gradually expand in circumference to eventually send out the tip as far as possible. This is done in order to create a loud crack through a small sonic boom made by breaking the sound barrier.

So, how does this translate to sales and referrals?

Obviously, in order to get new clients, you need to get out there and do some heavy lifting of your own, pushing down on your sales team and using the right marketing tools, while setting aside your pride and asking for business.

Like the bullwhip, getting it going can be difficult to do, but once there’s momentum built-up – it becomes a lot easier to manifest your intended outcome. It takes a lot of strength and effort to go out and land your initial clients and deliver value and a quality solution to them; but once those clients are involved in the process of buying on a regular basis, they will start referring you to others with comfort and confidence.

Similar to the cone that a bullwhip forms, which gets wider and wider as you spin it; so do your clients continue to expand until they reach a tipping-point, where referrals start happening.

At that point, you don’t have to put as much effort into sales and marketing, but you just have to maintain the quality of work that you’ve been producing.

You need to be aware that in order to become a referral-based business, you must look at it as a long-term goal, because in the short-term phase of your growth – you need to be far more aggressive and proactive and go out there to do your marketing.

Pace Yourself And Crack The Speed Of Sound

 In sales, the pace in which your sales leads grow is directly related to the effort that you put in at the beginning of the process.

As soon as you start selling and landing new work, the sooner referrals will pour in from those clients and you’ll build a portfolio of work that will fetch positive PR that can be used as content for your marketing strategy.

In your business, you act as the wrist that will provide motion to the bullwhip; speaking to as many relevant people as possible, advocating your business and driving awareness to your service and USP.

The faster you whip those sales, the larger the sales will be and the easier it becomes to maintain those clients and the referrals that will come with them.

Now, before I whip you, get going and drive those numbers up.

Get those referrals flowing to you like a well-irrigated rice farm.

And be sure to include me in your ass-whipping journey; I’ll provide you with a bigger, stronger bullwhip, one that won’t just break the sound-barrier, but shatter it.

Get in touch for a lunch, a chat or to see who might even have the bigger whip:

+2783 253 3339



Stop Playing In The Middle; Pick A Side, Dammit!

By Business Coaching Entrepreneur Strategy No Comments

A big part of building a concrete business strategy is in deciding the market that your company is going after, which can be difficult as every market is unique and all of them have certain dynamics that are to be considered when taking them on.

Every business also has a different approach as to what they are going after and within that playing field there’s always opposition to be considered. As a business owner, you want to find space where you’re not in direct competition with that opposition.

This is why I’ll often recommend to my clients that they should always consider and keep fully aware of the market that they are aiming for to adopt their product or service, as it’s not always a clear-cut path.

“Where Do You Play And How Do You Win?” 

As you’re going through the process of finding the right market to deliver to, your awareness shifts to dynamics such as size of market; the geography of that market; the LSM and earning potential that comes with those potential clients; and whether you’re targeting a large, mass audience or a very niche and particular audience.

Within every product or service, your market can often be divided into two categories that sit on either side of those dynamics mentioned. Bear in mind that there is always room for a middle-ground, but that’s the space that you want to avoid when picking a side.

I like to look at the two sides as the Rolls Royce and the Chappies sides of those industries; the Rolls Royce side refers to the most expensive, exclusive and niche markets, while the Chappies bubble-gum side refers to the cheaper, high-volume and open markets.

Essentially, your goal is to pick a side and work your product or service and customer relations into one of those sides, while keeping away from the middle.

It’s better to pick either the low-volume, high-margin route or to take the high-volume, low-margin route, as the markets tend to be split and function better in one of those two areas.

In South Africa, when you take a look at the retail and food industry, we have Woolworths that takes on the Rolls Royce model, with careful attention paid to high-quality import products that opt for a smaller target market that are willing to pay higher prices. They dominate that area of the market, with a greater experience to offer their customers and a more comfortable environment; which ends up being a bit more costly.

In comparison, you have the Shoprite brand that adopts the Chappies model, where there’s access to a much wider market, but with much lower pricing on their high-volume products which cater to people with lower incomes. The experience isn’t as great and less attention is paid to making the customer feel far more comfortable and at home, but the pricing is far cheaper and there are far more customers at the end of the day.

These two models work very well for the businesses in these spaces and when you find some companies that try to sit in the middle, like Pick ‘n Pay, there’s always a challenge to deal with as the bottom takes up most of the volume-based market, while the top takes the niche and exclusive market; while they struggle from the middle to cater to both ends, taking fire from both sides.

Pick A Side And Stick With It

 When picking and deciding on your target market, be very deliberate as to whether you want to find and attract Rolls Royce (high-touch, boutique, exclusive; better experience and enjoyment) customers or Chappies bubble-gum (lower priced, high-volume, wide audience) customers.

You will do your business the world of good if you choose to focus on a particular market and ensure that you deliver the best possible product or service that you can. Don’t fall into the trap of chasing shiny pennies that distract you from picking one side.

Try to avoid the middle and keep away from attempting to make both sides of the spectrum happy, as it doesn’t always work out for your business in the best way. You’ll be left under a load of strain as you compete with both the cheaper and expensive model, rather than dealing with one competitive force by choosing one of either side.

Take the time to consider the pros and cons that each of those markets present you with, weigh it out and determine which area suits your product or service best.

Being a fence-sitter has never really worked out too well for anybody, ask Humpty Dumpty.

And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen, picking a side and being firm in that decision will help your business blossom in the best way possible.

The same applies when choosing a business coach to assist you in taking ground-breaking leaps to achieving the best your business has to offer; it’s either you want me in your court, or you don’t – there’s no time for indecision from the middle.

So, let me know whether or not you’d like to have a meeting, a chat, a face-to-face or a much-needed wake-up slap:

+2783 253 3339


I’m kidding about the slap, but I mean, if that’s your thing… I know people…

Sacrifice Versus Stimulus

By Business Coaching Consulting Innovation Strategy No Comments

I’ve come to find that within a growing number of industries, more specifically in  tech-dominated spaces, that more and more entrepreneurs are becoming reliant on the idea of finding investors, or some form of financial backing before taking their solution to market and starting a business.

This notion that there needs to be funding or some form of stimulus before making the decision to create a business is somewhat ridiculous, in my opinion.

I don’t know if hard-work, sacrifice and the due diligence required to prove oneself in the market isn’t as important anymore; or if I’m just outdated.

Doing Sales Versus Hunting Down Investors

 I’m finding it quite interesting that more and more potential entrepreneurs are avoiding taking a route to success through the sacrifice of time, effort and resources in order to get their company started and off the ground – instead they opt for some sort of external funding.

This sort of logic shows that it would be wiser to spend precious productivity on chasing down investment and financial support in search of someone to fund your dream business – when all of that drive and ambition could be spent on developing the product and sales strategy to achieve that goal through one’s own volition.

There’s a lot of conversation around the idea that starting a company without funding is far too difficult or strenuous to be achieved in this day and age, and that spending time on a sales deck to lure in an investor would be the right way to go about making this happen.

But very few start-ups need this type of external investment and I find it a bit lazy to avoid the more traditional route of sacrificing your own resources and pushing your hardest to achieve success on your own terms, without the need for that sort of intervention.

I’m not saying that investors are a bad thing, either, but when too much emphasis is placed on financial support, it can be somewhat problematic and hinder your growth as an entrepreneur.

If the time is taken to develop the product or service and some sort of financial sacrifice is made to put your solution out there, then it’s far more applaudable and attractive to potential investors that could provide funding further down the line.

By putting more ambition and drive into your product or service and showing that you believe in what you’re bringing to the world, you’re likely to achieve far more results.

Other than the achievement that comes with that desire to make the necessary sacrifices to start a great business, you’re granted far more autonomy and freedom in the decision-making processes and feel much more empowered at the end of the day.

As someone that has invested and provided financial backing to people and their dream businesses, I always consider certain criteria and would never blindly give away money without weighing out the attitude and character of the entrepreneur, first.

That being said, one of the biggest motivators that will attract me towards investing in a potential business owner is their ambition and the momentum they’re able to create in pushing their solution through sales, sacrifice and determination. There’s a certain level of reluctance I feel toward giving my money to someone that doesn’t show me that they have these qualities and don’t have enough belief in their solution to brave the storm themselves.

I suggest to anybody that wants to start a business and conquer the mountains that come with being an entrepreneur, to have enough belief in their product or service to first engage in the sales, marketing and make the sacrifices needed to brave that inevitable storm.

If your ambition is to be an entrepreneur, a successful business owner and believe that you have what it takes to take your solution to the market on your own terms, but require a bit of guidance and advice: as a successful business coach, I can help you with that.

Perhaps you’ve been putting in the effort and have a solution that you know is of real value to particular markets and industries, but can’t get past a certain point and might need some financial intervention: I can also help you with that.

It’s quite easy to grab my attention, as my phone is always fully charged and I’m constantly reloading my emails page, waiting in anticipation for a client just like you – so, let’s make something happen, soon: [small investment required]

+2783 253 3339



Selling Your Business? Well, Here’s What Buyers Look For

By Business Management Consulting Entrepreneur No Comments

I often call bullshit for the litany of reasons that people sprinkle on me for wanting to start a business; talking about wanting to make an impact on the world, a dent in the universe, change and better lives… Such a load of crap!

Spare me the soft, fluffy and sordid motivations behind starting a business, we all know that often, the biggest driving force behind that decision is money – cold, hard cash.

9 times out of 10, people predominantly want the wealth and power that comes with owning and running their own business; perhaps enjoying the journey along the way, while making a positive impact and supporting people in that venture of self-discovery.

When digging deeper, though, I find that quite a sizable portion of my clients have the goal of creating a business just to sell it down the line, cash out and then retire with millions in the bank.

These people often don’t go in with the right mindset to approach that in the best possible way – that’s where I come in.

Cut The Bullshit; Let’s Call A Spade, Well, A Spade.

By identifying that your mission is to ultimately work on creating a great business in order to sell it 3, 5 or even 7 years down the line, you’re already on the right track to discovering what it might take to find the right buyer.

A lot of people try to build a business with the sole intention to sell that business. There is absolutely nothing wrong with doing that and I will often push for my clients to find the right way to go about it, if that’s really what they want.

As a business coach and having successfully owned and run a few great businesses, myself; I know how to make a business run beautifully, but I also know a gorgeous opportunity when I see one.

Clients will often approach me and tell me that that’s what they want to do, the route that they want to take and I make them ask themselves a few important questions, “firstly, what does the buyer of your business, in five years, look like?”. You should ask yourself what kind of business or buyer will want to buy your business and what makes your business attractive to them.

It’s absolutely crucial to put yourself in the buyer’s shoes and define what it is that you’re looking for if you were the one wanting to buy a business.

What To Flaunt In Your Business, So That You Find The Right Buyer

There are numerous factors to consider when looking at it from the buyer’s perspective and you should ensure those factors cross your mind in some way or the other, so that you make the most desirable and mouth-watering business, possible.

Most of my clients run businesses that provide the service of selling time, so the approach is fairly different to all enterprises, but many of these aspects can be applied to one that is product-based, as well.

To flaunt that sexy business of yours, you want to take note of a few very important things, such as brand value and how valuable or desirable your brand is; how deep your defensible moat is in protecting the business; the lifetime value and scale of your clients/customers; how stable your profits are; and the overall quality of your product and clients.

There’s plenty more to be discussed and it will turn your company from a typical, boring 6 to a desirable, gorgeous catch of a 10!

Starting with brand value: in the past, I was offered a very tempting amount by a large multinational to buy one of my product lines; interestingly enough they didn’t want product, stock, people, nor the assets – they simply just wanted the labels and the brand. It fascinated me that all they wanted was to take over the IP and this taught me the real value of the brand that you present to the world. The way your business looks, is presented and talked about is crucial in selling to a potential buyer.

In creating a product or service that is difficult to replicate or duplicate, one that is expensive for anyone to hop into the same market and to compete with; you begin to form an impenetrable moat around your business, so that it becomes even more desirable to the buyer. Vertical integration (do you own the service, product, supply chain, outlets?) will make that moat run even deeper, like a bottomless pit. The more vertical integration there is, the more stable you are and the more likely your business will sell.

Next, your clients become just as important: as long-standing customers that bring lifetime value and a stable income are golden-nuggets to the buyer. If your overheads are always covered and there’s a consistent flow of profit coming in, the likelihood of making that big sale increases drastically.

Do you have all of the necessary contracts in place? Contracts between you and your clients, between you and your suppliers and any other stake-holders in your business are all of value to the buyer. Ensure that all of those contracts are rigorous, so that no unforeseen circumstances rock-up and that nobody can just walk away with no obligations.

Take a stroll down memory lane – generally around the last 3-5 years – and determine how consistent your profits and revenues are, while identifying whether or not they are continuing to grow, or if they are in decline. The person that wants to buy your business is ideally looking for consistent (and consistently growing) profits. Having one great year and one shockingly bad year will make any potential buyer a nervous and reluctant wreck. It also doesn’t hurt if your revenues and profits are higher than that of your competitors.

Quality clients are also very attractive – do you supply large multinationals, do you supply large, comfortable and secure businesses? Or do you supply lots of bottom-feeders that tend to be inconsistent and unpredictable? These questions can make or break the attractiveness of the business. If you have consistent annuity-based clients with great reputations, you will tickle the buyer’s taste buds.

If you have intellectual property, or proprietary technology that’s patented and protected; a stable management team with trustworthy and reputable leaders that are suitable for advancement in your business; and a variable overhead, where the staff and employee-base is small enough to cut back on and find freelance work if crises like Covid might arise: you’re on the right track to finding the most suitable buyer for your business.

Most buyers also look at geographical reach and whether or not you dominate only one province, or city, or if your reach extends to the entire country or even a global customer-base; also, an excellent and high NPS (Net Promoter Score) that indicates how likely your clients, customers and staff are to refer you and whether or not they adore and believe in your business, willing to spread your brand like unrelenting Jehovah’s Witnesses.

It doesn’t end there, trust me.

Synergy also becomes important to the buyer, as potential savings are always a major benefit to them. If the buyer has the option to immediately save money by removing some of your costs, because they already have it built into their business, it becomes more desirable. An example might be that your business and theirs have a full-time server, where they can transfer everything to one of the two and cut back on some of the costs of operating both. This can also extend to particular staff that both businesses might have, like a bookkeeper that can be let go of, because they already have one, or in the delivery of products and distribution (instead of using two trucks, transport duties can be shifted to one).

Is your solution plug and play, that it solves the buyer’s needs so that they can plug your solution into their client-base with ease?; what is the level of automation in your processes and policies, so that there isn’t huge reliance on extra employees, that it is fully-functional and works fluidly without too much human interaction; and does your USP differentiate you in the market and is it very obvious to the potential buyer?

Finally, does your business sit in a ‘blue ocean’ marketplace? Is it in a clean environment that has plenty of opportunity to dominate that market or industry, or does it sit in a ‘red ocean’ market that is surrounded by constant competition, rivalry and challenges? It’s far more attractive if the buyer doesn’t have to deal with strong competitive forces and can dominate that area with far more ease.

Throw All Of Those Ingredients Into The Crucible

 In taking all of those elements into deep consideration, you create a solid business that any buyer would leap at the opportunity to acquire it from you.

Your goal is to make it as attractive to the potential buyer as humanly possible. By paying such careful attention to what they would be looking for in a business, you’re able to create the most impressionable and desirable set of circumstances to sell.

Now, with you filling the shoes of a prospective buyer, are there any other important things to consider when looking to buy a business? What else would have you gunning for the opportunity to take over such a high-potential company?

I want you to walk away that much richer, having made the right decisions behind selling your business and for the highest possible amount. All of this with the peace of mind that both you and the buyer will be happy with the decision you’ve both made.

Who knows, maybe if you tick all of those boxes correctly, you might find that your business is a keeper and end up hogging it all to yourself.

If you’re looking to sell your business and are in need of an evaluation, based on what I’ve talked about, definitely hit me up. We can run through your goals in attracting and manifesting the most suitable buyer and what exactly it’ll take to sell, effortlessly.

I’m a phone or video call; a lunch or a quick beverage; a whatsapp or an email away from making your dreams a reality:

+2783 253 3339




A Great Recipe for a Gripping Consultant Coach

By Business Coaching Consulting Entrepreneur No Comments

Just in case you were curious, wondering what it takes to be an ideal business coach or  consultant, what the difference is between those and a mentor and where exactly I fit into the equation, worry not.

For I am here to unpack it for you.

While they all have a very similar ring to them, there are differing definitions for these occupations. Each one is different in a few ways and it’s important to be able to distinguish them from one another, just so that you make the right choice when picking one to bring out the best in your business.


So, how do all of these differ from one another?

Let’s start with a mentor: even though it’s someone you know and respect, who offers you both guidance and advice, they tend to come unstructured – with no goals or timelines that are set, remaining unaccountable to their processes and guidance. They also tend to be subjective in their approach, giving you opinions on how, or why certain things should be done.

This is not what I do.

So then, am I a coach? Coaching tends to have a more structured approach – with set periods of time, there are goals made that should be adhered to and accomplished. A coach is also paid for their time, so there’s more pressure and accountability that comes with the package. While remaining objective, they are non-advisory in their nature, tending to stay away from giving advice, but rather have a clear mission to understand where you are so that they can help motivate you and find solutions – keeping you on a path to achieving your dreams and finding success.

Although I touch on some of these points – this is not what I do.

Ah! So I must be a consultant?

Not exactly.

While a consultant also has more accountability and helps in defining their client’s objectives, they often work together with the client to achieve their goals and to bring better results by being part of the process and producing actual work. With a project-based approach, there will be clear timelines and deadlines that need to be adhered to, while they are also very advisory in nature and have a lot more to say when giving direction.


“Spillly. WTF?!  What do you do then?”


I’d consider myself a hybrid. I sit somewhere in-between coaching and consulting – helping you define your growth objectives and assisting you in achieving them with strategic thinking, planning, advice and an outcome in mind of how to get there. I am objective towards your targets and goals, respecting the objectives that you’ve set to accomplish and will push you toward learning and attaining more to get to your desired outcome.

The role I play in my clients’ lives is that of a silent-theoretical partner – one who is always a call or text away. I act as a catalyst to the success of your business, helping make the right decisions, while inspiring, motivating and educating along the way.


Intelligence + Emotional Aptitude 

A person’s IQ (Intelligence Quotient) has been used for many years as a predictor of success and a way to determine how intellectually capable a person is in any given environment. Affecting everything from school and job performance, to income and health, IQ was seen as the ultimate test of character.

Until, EQ came along.

Emotional Intelligence has gained massive popularity in recent years by giving spotlight to empathy and its effects on leadership. It is the ability to connect with people on a higher level, sharing personal experiences and understanding which results in better leadership skills, mental health and job performance.

What if you were to combine these two powerful social commodities?

With my coaching-style built on a rigid foundation of both intelligence and emotion, I’m able to bring the right ingredients to a wide variety of scenarios. With IQ, the ability to logically piece together all the observations over the years gives me the foresight to pick up on risks, behaviours and immediate benefits within your business.

While EQ lends itself to my years of understanding and working with hundreds of staff (as well as clients’ staff) and identifying what makes my clients and the people around them heard and understood. I take a clear-cut route to finding and fostering connections with people.


Strategic AND Practical

Not only will there be a need for a healthy combination of EQ and IQ, but there are elements of strategy and practicality needed to make for a well-rounded approach.

In being strategic, there should always be a plan of action that encapsulates the needs, desires and end-goal of my client. Through careful, thorough analysis, I will provide the tools and steps to implement and execute a plan that will bring about the best results.

Being practical means that it’s always better to have a certain level of involvement in the process. Being able to add value and effort where needed, so that results are proven and not just from a theoretical standpoint. Putting in actual creative effort – not only providing ideas.

If there was a coordinate plane to help you visualise where exactly I sit on the axis of both EQ and IQ; Strategy and Practicality; I’m slap-bang in the middle. Blending all of those aspects best I can to complement you and your business.

Fresh Ingredients Go A Long Way

The longer I spend as a family man, a coach and a business owner, the more I learn and grow those commodities. By finding the right fertilizers and giving just the right amount of nourishment, my lessons and advice become ripe for the plucking. Giving my clients only the freshest ingredients to savour all that I have to offer.

A successful business consultant/coach not only has the intuition and ability to use all of the right information at the right time, but also knows all the right measurements needed for their secret recipe.

The desire for your success is of great importance to me. It is my duty to understand your goals and challenge you to achieve more, all within your boundaries and levels of discomfort.

As a business consultant and coach I act as a propellant in helping you achieve success, clarity in your dreams and goals, healthy business growth, financial stability and a sense of joy in what you do.


I am a coach that cares;

That listens;

That understands and seeks to find understanding.

So, go ahead. Squeeze the best out of what I have to offer.

Let’s get together for a fruitful discussion and an enticing cup of something strong.

You know where to find me: 083 253 3999 or brent@spillly.com


















To Be, Or Not To Be A Family-Run Business

By Business Coaching Entrepreneur Strategy No Comments

Family is a beautiful and sometimes icky subject to approach when business is involved, as there are so many arguments for and against the involvement of family in forming any kind of business.

In my years of coaching a diverse variety of clients, I’ve found that a number of them run family-owned businesses and that there is a certain level of both ease and discomfort that come with making such an unpredictable choice.

As with everything in life, there’s always a lurking list of pros and cons that can be used to spark either healthy debate or ignite a scorching argument – so get your pitchforks and flamethrowers ready, as we take a look at some of them.

Is Blood Always Thicker Than Water? 

In breaking down the different arguments for and against having a family-run business, I often run into both plenty of benefits and detriments in the situations that my clients often come to face.

These family-owned businesses come in different shapes and sizes: a husband and wife partnering up to conceive a healthy, young startup; a father and son building towards a timeless legacy; sometimes 3rd generation families that start with the grandfather and trickle all the way down to the grandchildren, exist, as well.

There is a lot of conversation around how to run the dynamics of a family business and a lot of business owners will often run into the decision whether or not to include or employ family.

Usually in those family-oriented businesses, there’s a tendency to employ family members that are either unemployed, miserable in their current jobs, or that they could trust in building a great business that will last. Most of the time it’s done out of love, but sometimes because employing family can work out as a nice, cheap option.

Some of the biggest advantages of having a family-run business would be more empathy all the way through the company, as there is an extra level of care; you often know who or what you’re dealing with in an employee and understand the person better; the opportunity of a faster start-up, because you avoid the process of sifting through people that you don’t know, avoiding tedious interviews and background checks; and family tends to be a bit more united from the get-go, having more motivation to succeed with and for one another.

Take a look at some of the most powerful family-run businesses like Nike, Walmart and Samsung – they are amazing at what they do and provide a pretty solid defence around family involvement.

Get your fire extinguisher ready – because on the contrary, Harvard research has proven that family-run businesses have a success rate of around only 30%. A scary statistic that should be paid more attention to, as 70% of these businesses fail, get bought out, or never make it past the 2nd generation.

It’s not difficult to find arguments against having a family-run business, as it’s not always a peachy and pleasant road to go down.

You’ll find that those high levels of comfort ultimately slow down the company growth, with a reduced sense of drive and professionalism; conflicts don’t necessarily stay business-related, but can carry through into personal affairs; often blatant levels of unfairness on staff that aren’t considered family, as promotions and progress in the company become a contentious issue; deciding which family members deserve leadership roles and raises certainly push buttons; and often a lack of accountability follows if management doesn’t want family who are in the wrong left feeling butthurt.

It can often change family dynamics quite quickly, creating resentment and rifts that were never there before.


Blood and Business Can Be Like Oil And Water 

One of the saddest things that I come across in my experience coaching is the disjointing and disruption of families that can often be found in running a family business.

Quite often, married couples might partner-up in starting a business and pretty much all of their energy, time and efforts are spent on making that vision work in the best possible way. Waking up together, going to work together and all that is ever discussed is the business – creating an imbalance between their relationship and business-relationship.

As the proverb goes: “familiarity breeds contempt”.

All of that time spent on work and business, without enough focus on love, ends up eating away and destroying a marriage faster than a divorce lawyer with bills to pay. The power dynamics in family-business relationships often shift, too – the water gets murky and power becomes an issue between couples, parents, children and even grandchildren. It doesn’t always work out for the better when the kids take over the business, kick mommy and daddy to the curb and play with their budgets, while partying away the profits.

There’s a funny saying that’s echoed through time: “the grandfather started it, the father built it and the children spend all of the money.”

My stance is that if you don’t need to employ family or friends, simply don’t.

It’s not always worth the risk of burning bridges, creating rifts, starting fires and ruining the precious gem that is family. Love your family, take care of and respect them enough not to bring them into a potential and likely mess.

It’s impossible to go back in time and make your amends when the damage has already been done.

For more polarising and hard-hitting thoughts on your business decisions, tactics, ideas and plans:

Feel free to get in touch with a business coach that actually gives a shit, We can have a chat, grab a lunch, maybe a warm beverage, You know exactly how to reach me:


+2783 253 3339






Why I love Jo’burg so much and a little less every day.

By Lifestyle Motivation No Comments



I was born in Hillbrow in 1975. For the first year of my life my family unit lived in Berea on the eastern outskirts of modern-day Hillbrow. We moved shortly after to the now, much greener northern suburbs, where my mother has lived in the same house for 37 years. I am a true Jo’burg boy. My accent reveals this truth.

Except for a brief stint in London I have not lived anywhere else in the world for an extensive period of time. I love Johannesburg. I preach my love on the interwebs and to friends and foreigners, alike. I defend Jo’burg in the great war between Johannesburg and Cape Town and I take pride in the fact that I live in the greatest city in Africa.

But something is slowly changing.

There is the great anecdote about the boiling frog that I have always believed to be true of the people who live in South Africa and Jozi in particular. The last 2 years of my life have been spent working in the inner-inner city of Johannesburg, where the melting pot of cultures and lack of space is obvious. Crime is rampant and local government service delivery is poor. These are not new revelations and I have been aware of this from as early as leaving high school, which I attended near Joubert Park, in the city centre, twenty years ago. What’s become more worrying is the ease at which my fellow neighbours and I are now accepting this slow decline.

I recently returned from a two-week break in Cape Town over December where I was deliberately looking at how well the city runs in comparison to Jo’burg. Cape Town is quite literally a different country. Yes, there are litter and crime and unemployment issues but the traffic lights all work, recycling waste is easy, the street curbs and island don’t have weeds growing out of them and the distinct lack of potholes is staggering. How can they have got this so right when Jo’burg has far more tax payers and a larger economy?

I am not one to talk politics but clearly at some level the Democratic Alliance (DA) has managed to grapple with problems and resolve them where the ANC is failing fantastically in central Johannesburg.

I’m considering “emigration” to the fairer Cape as an alternative to being boiled alive in Jo’burg. I fear that the path we take in Jo’burg is slippery, downhill and full of greased politicians.

I love my city. My tree-lined city. My non-windy city. My  vibrant city. My city that I know so intimately. It saddens me to even consider leaving my network of friends, family and local businesses but the right hemisphere of my brain is winning this fight of leaving.

All that was won in the great fight to freedom is slowly being lost. I should end this post with “Vote DA!” but the problems are way deeper than sheer politics and are now engrained in us all. I, like many others, feel that staying and fighting this battle is now a waste of energy and that’s clearly half the problem.