Aston graduate’s placement has real impact on local SME

The Leadership Whisperers
Emma Taylor and Jude Jennison of The Leadership Whisperers, with Giovanni Pollarolo and one of the trained horses used for the leadership training activities


An Aston graduate on a four-week placement, arranged through Graduate Advantage, has helped local training and development company, The Leadership Whisperers.

The Leadership Whisperers is a business focused on the training and development sector, providing leadership training activities with the aid of their professionally trained horses. Combining this with the knowledge of the directors; who between them have more than 30 years of senior management experience in the commercial environment, makes for a unique offering.

Emma Taylor and Jude Jennison, Founders of The Leadership Whisperers, became aware of Graduate Advantage having participated, and successfully completed, the Aston Programme for Small Business Growth – a programme specifically designed to support owner-managed companies plan for future growth. The programme is presented by Aston Business School’s Professor Mark Hart. The business has gone from strength to strength since being founded in 2014 and already works with a number of high-profile clients.  Professor Hart has been very impressed by the ideas implemented by Emma and Jude, describing their business plan as a ‘game changer’.

The company’s mission is to help leaders and executives develop powerful relationships and communication skills that enable organisations to live and work in harmony. The company explains the reason for using horses as widgets in promoting leadership skills: “horses mirror your leadership and provide non-judgmental feedback so you can recalibrate to get the results you want”.

Jude, also an author, has recently published “Leadership beyond Measure”, a book which describes her extraordinary story of bringing leadership with horses into business. Jude explores seven leadership lessons and the methods implemented in offering leadership training and learning through horses to transform leaders and businesses.

Emma and Jude were looking to recruit a postgraduate student with the right set of marketing skills, to help them with planning marketing strategies and growing the company. The aim of recruiting an intern was to utilise their marketing knowledge to gain a better understanding of processes and plans, in order to grow the business in line with plan and projections.

To assist with the marketing processes and plans for the business, Giovanni Pollarolo, MSc Marketing Management at Aston University, was recruited to join the team. For Giovanni this presented an opportunity to utilise and develop the skills acquired through his course, in turn helping to boost his future career prospects by networking within the business and commercial environment.

The work undertaken by Giovanni has enabled the business to create a structured plan by generating process flows and a client management process. This contributes to the development the business, not only from a marketing perspective, but also by giving a wider understanding of the various methods that are applicable to help with growth.

During the time Giovanni spent with The Leadership Whisperers, he has applied his marketing, general management and business skills to be able to present a strategic overview of the business. He has also been able to produce a set of marketing key performance indicators (KPIs) and a 90 day plan for the company, stating the break points on the current marketing process and ways of fixing these points to ensure there is a logical flow to the marketing strategies adopted by the business.

Emma and Jude have been very happy with the work Giovanni completed with the business. His contribution to the development of the business was substantial, providing a proper structure for marketing activities going forward.

Graduate Advantage was able to find a candidate with the right skills and mind-set to fit the business during this high growth period. To see if Graduate Advantage could help your business, get in touch via the website:
http://www.graduateadvantage.co.uk