A Collaborative Approach to Independent Success by @TiYKingdom for #IndieRetail

Collaboration and support can go a little way toward saving our high street… I run www.thisisyourkingdom.co.uk (TiYK), a curated insider’s guide to the UK’s most lovely places to eat, drink, walk, think, potter, ponder, snuggle shop and sleep. This week we’ve been busy telling a host of lovely startups our ‘Tales of a Startup’ at ‘Creative Country Business’ a 2 day event delivered and hosted by ex-dragon Doug Richard’s School for Creative Startups and supported by Country Homes & Interiors. I love taking part in these events. It’s always such a pleasure to share stories and ideas with likeminded business owners who have taken the plunge or are just at the start of their new exciting journey.

Businesses are increasingly open to embracing a collaborative approach to growth

What really stood out during our many conversations and discussions was the way in which each business was willing to embrace a collaborative approach to growth – something I have been privileged to experience on many occasions during my recent post-city years. Gone are the days when rival businesses compete from behind closed doors, today’s entrepreneur knows ‘no man is an island’ and recognises the invaluable role played by collaboration and peer to peer support in achieving success.

We’ve been lucky to take part in many collaborative goings on over the last 2 years. From sharing contacts and ideas to swapping skills and taking part in joint PR campaigns and events – each experience, irrespective of its success has facilitated new relationships and opened doors to opportunities and experiences that have enriched our business journey on every conceivable level.

At the risk of sounding somewhat cheesy now, sharing and collaboration is exactly what TiYK is all about – the sharing of values, of knowledge, of locality and community. Whether it’s on behalf of independent businesses showcasing homegrown talents or local consumers passionate about provenance, we simply play a lovely part in encouraging and facilitating it.

Unique local ‘insider information’ provides a fantastic impartial channel for independents to improve their visibility…

One of the ways in which we help facilitate this collaborative approach between likeminded businesses is by inviting each one to share their favourite local thing to see or do with our readers in return for an accreditation and link. This system for capturing unique local ‘insider information’ provides a fantastic impartial channel for independents to improve their visibility whilst encouraging them to shout about similar minded small businesses they love and admire. Not only does this reinforce their brand values but it also helps raise awareness of their locality and goes a little way towards making our high streets just that teensy bit more lovely…


With Independent Retailer Month running for the whole of July why not take this opportunity to say thank you by nominating your favourite local shop! Simply share the name and address, along with a few words about why you love it (by midnight 31 July 2012) and we’ll reward the five most lovely entries plucked from the TiYK teapot with a big TiYK-style shout out!

This blog was written by Hannah Needham, founder of This is Your Kingdom.



About Clare Bailey

Clare Bailey, The Retail Champion (formerly Clare Rayner), is one of the most well-known and respected retail experts in the UK. With unrivalled knowledge in retail, high streets and consumer matters, she offers unbiased, independent content – whether engaged as a professional speaker, for broadcast media, or for a written feature. Clare is a business woman, entrepreneur and founder of several small businesses. Having been born into a family of successful business owners, it was inevitable that she’d eventually jump off the corporate treadmill and step out on her own! Today her brand portfolio includes The Retail Champion, The Retail Conference, the Future High Street Summit and the Support for Independent Retail campaign. In addition, she is co-founder of Mobaro Retail UK and a non-exec director of Beed Virtual Assistant Services. Having started her career as a fast-track store management trainee for McDonalds, she went on to work with leading retailers such as M&S, Dixons and Argos. She moved swiftly into management roles before being headhunted into senior consulting roles with global software giant SAP, and international management consulting brand, Accenture. Her corporate background in senior retail, consulting and technology roles, coupled with her experience of creating and running her own business, has enabled her to be equally capable whether consulting to global brands or micro businesses. This unique blend has not only positioned her as a leading expert in all things retail, but has enabled her to add meaningful commentary and insight to the debate around the future of the high street, and, how technology is driving fundamental change in the way consumers, and businesses, interact. Clare has become an influential voice in her field, which has resulted in her becoming a regular media contributor and sought-after conference speaker. Often seen on Good Morning Britain, BBC Breakfast, Sky News, and Chanel 5 (to name a few), Clare speaks on a myriad of retail, high street and consumer issues – but is particular adept when it comes to explaining the context behind retail trading results, newly released data, and government stats, in a palatable and informative manner. In addition to broadcast and conference speaking, Clare is the proud author of two best-selling business books published by Kogan Page - The Retail Champion: 10 Steps to Retail Success, published July 2012 and How to Sell to Retail: The Secrets of Getting Your Product to Market, published February 2013. She has provided contributions to various academic texts, including Retail Marketing Management (published by Pearson). With an engaging, conversational yet informative style, Clare writes for press and content agencies, providing features, articles, blogs and opinion pieces as well as contributions to white papers and reports. However, when the situation demands a more serious style, Clare can deliver - In 2016 she wrote an extensive report for a major insurance and risk law firm, as a retail expert witness, to support a public liability suit. She found that project particularly enjoyable as it played well to her strengths – assimilating large amounts of data and information, identifying the key points and articulating that in an understandable manner. When not on TV or speaking at conferences, Clare’s “day job” sees her supporting consumer-facing businesses through her consultancy services. When asked to describe what she most loves about retail consulting it is typically the opportunity to “dig deep”, getting “under the bonnet”, in order to leverage the business data to uncover the insights that lead to “lightbulb moments”. She also loves working on business change programmes that centre on improving the processes and systems to increase profitability by supporting more rapid, better informed decision making, improving the customer experience, or simply by become more efficient and streamlined. In this respect she considers herself a “business engineer” with a brain that works like a relational database! Due to her years of experience, her logical, objective approach, her quick, rational thinking, she is known for being able to cut through complexity, seeing right through to the crux of issues, finding creative solutions that others may have overlooked. As if all that wasn’t enough, Clare is a working mum, juggling a home life in rural Lincolnshire with her partner, their 5 kids, 4 cats, and geriatric Labrador! For all enquiries, contact Clare directly on 01727 238890 or email champion@retailchampion.co.uk.
This entry was posted in Independent Retailer Month - Blog-a-day for #IndieRetail and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s