My name is James Parris. I have worked predominantly in the Technology and Commercial Property sectors since 2002. I have also coached Elite rowing since 2004. Crews that I have coached have won National and International Regattas. Oarsmen and oarswomen who have rowed at World Cup and World Championship Regattas have been through my programme.
In 2005 I started working in my Family’s business in the Commercial Property sector. The business had been running since the early 1990s and was one of the first Serviced Office Operators in the UK. It was very successful and had expanded around the world, predominantly in the United States. The business had weathered several economic bumps in the road, even though its flexible service meant that it was sensitive to these cycles.
Following the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2007 the business lost about 50% of its client base almost over night.
Tasked with turning the business around, the Team and I devised a new product for the industry and released this to the market, leading us to double turnover in 18 months. During what was a very difficult time for the Commercial Property sector as a whole, our business seemed to be in rude health.
Having left to pursue other opportunities in 2013, I watched, powerless, as my Family’s business started a slow decline due to an inability to grow. Turnover for the business had been in the region of £6 million.
Early in 2017, the business closed.
Having analysed what went on and with the benefit of hindsight, had we have dissociated ourselves so we could work on our business, rather than in our business, and created a team that was built for high performance, the company would in all likelihood have grown and survived.
Having coached rowing since 2004, I have built successful teams in the world of rowing which have won at many prestigious National and International Regattas. Some of these teams were only beaten during a season by the GB International boats that would go on to win medals at World Championships and the Olympic Games.
Combining my experience from the sporting world, growing a business to the ‘adolescent’ stage and watching its subsequent decline, my goal now is to help other businesses get past the £10 million turnover mark, beyond which they are more likely to survive and grow.
Some of the rowing crews I have coached
Kingston Rowing Club Training Camp 2017
Thames Rowing Club Training Camp 2013