Ed & Will’s Story – Business Mentoring Has Helped Us Launch Our Business

It has been an incredible experience working with Alison, she has evolved our business and the way we handle clients in the best way possible.

She has been able to help us out in so many ways and encouraged us to do things on our own and not have to rely on her to do things for us, we are beginning to grasp the business world.

We feel like we’re ready to conquer it!

Of course we will be keeping Alison as our mentor, and I hope she will be keeping Flowbox as her designers!”

Ed Craddock, Flowbox Design


“Ed and Will are extremely talented individuals.

They have embraced my website project and gone the extra mile to achieve what I believe is now a more useful resource for young people, their parents, educational establishments and businesses.

I will continue to employ them as my designers and am more than happy to be their business mentor.

 I highly recommend their design services.”

Alison Mannell, Firebird Training Limited

Alison has been mentoring us to help launch our business

Ed & Will, two 18 year old entrepreneurs had formed their design company, Flowbox Design, and were in need of an experienced mentor. They wanted someone who knew how to handle young entrepreneurs, who understood the business world and who also had the drive and enthusiasm they needed to kick start their business.

Alison was looking to relaunch her Youth Job & Young Entrepreneur Coaching programmes and knew this would involve a complete overhaul of her current website. A friend of Alison’s just happened to be Will’s Mum and after having a chat Alison knew this could be a match made in heaven. Business coaching/mentoring in exchange for a new website designed by the very people she helps.

Alison, Will and Ed sat down together and plotted out what each person wanted from a potential partnership.

“For the first week or so, we were talking and discussing things multiple times a day – it became a wakeup call to us that we really needed to be on the ball as this was a big project, a great opportunity and that we were working with someone who was not going to be messed around.

We started developing Alison’s new website. For the weeks that followed we began to design a website which wasn’t quite following the guidelines she had set and so there were multiple emails of amendments and changes to be done.

We had arranged a second meeting with Alison to discuss the design further. We really needed to iron out the discrepancies in what we believed each party wanted from the project. This was the turning point in the project.

We came to Alison with a completely new design, which she loved straight off the bat. We were excited to have been able to evoke a new reaction from her, she became very excited about the direction we had taken – we had really pulled through for our client and it gave us an incredible boost to get the project done exactly how Alison wanted it.

A month or so down the line the project was full steam ahead. The website was taking shape and the finishing line is in sight. Our meetings with Alison took a slightly different direction, now. Instead of being solely about the project, we were discussing our own business now. Ways in which to move forward was first on the agenda.

This is where, we feel, Alison really stood out from other mentors. She was determined to keep us on track, to set realistic goals and to have us think about things we hadn’t thought about. Furthermore she was able to do this in a very effective way. We didn’t feel patronised or that we were being talked down to, she showed an excellent understanding of how to communicate with us, two teenage entrepreneurs.”

“We now had goals, which we had to accomplish within a given time frame. Alison would check in regularly to find out how things were going, and this motivated us to work hard at everything we had to do, so that we could impress her with what we had achieved since we last spoke.

This was fantastic for us, the more we accomplished, the better off our business became and it showed, our enthusiasm to work on the project went through the roof, as did Alison’s excitement for how the project would turn out.

More recently we had discussed with her about how we were making a trip to Rockstar Youth, an initiative aimed at young entrepreneurs. We were looking for funding money to get things moving for us.

In our meeting Alison went through everything we needed to think about when looking to acquire this loan, we had a list of questions which we went through with her, not only did it provide us with something to show Rockstar, that we had considered everything – from our target client, to a full breakdown of what we would spend the money on and why we would be spending it.

It also gave us a solid understanding on who we are and where we stand as a business. She really psyched us up for the upcoming session with Rockstar, we had confidence in ourselves and our business, we were determined to secure this money.

We attended the Rockstar incubator day, where we would find out that not only would we receive the full amount of funding, each, but we would also have opportunities to work with Rockstar, and the businesses who were also accepted onto the program, too!

When we told Alison she was over the moon, there was a genuine happiness for us and also a level head for how we need to work on this accomplishment to push us even further. She provided insight on how we should go about finding the perfect office, and once we had found it how to make the most of it.

The development of the ideas we went through was extremely organic. We weren’t simply sitting there being told how to run things, we were being encouraged to think for ourselves, and how we could capitalise on our opportunities.

She brought us back to reality and set us another list of goals to achieve, how we can start to increase our awareness and how we can utilise the money we were to receive.” Ed Craddock, Flowbox Design