Our team

The team at Be the Business all have one thing in common – they want to help you unleash the true potential of your company and make Britain the economic powerhouse we all know it can be. To get things moving, they’ve each shared their own productivity tip as food for thought. If you have one of your own worth sharing then please let us know.

Helen Puddefoot

Communities director

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“Understanding your natural energy patterns throughout the day can allow you to plan around them. If you know you're better in the morning, block out time to do brain-taxing work that requires focus. If you have a dip between 2-3pm do something that energises you – whether that's meeting with people or building in a walk to get you moving.”

Andrina Collymore

Finance manager

“Time management is key – I prioritise what must be done today over simple non-urgent tasks. A to-do list and a can-do attitude maintains my focus. I also think having a great line manager, who is willing to share their knowledge, keeps me motivated and keen to learn more.”

Shanni Elcock

Digital marketing manager

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“Working in social media means that I survive on instant gratification, so I assemble my to-do lists with this in mind – sandwiching difficult tasks between blocks of two or three easier and quicker to complete tasks. The quick wins and sense of achievement keep me pumped for the more challenging items on my list.”

Arunima Motilal Dhar

Mentoring for Growth lead

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“When I am struggling with a task that I find cumbersome and challenging, I gown up and go into the plant. Walking a plant floor, meeting my team gives me a real buzz and I leave energised and ready to tackle the challenge of a not so simulating task.”

Adam Hardy

Senior research and insights manager

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“I’m an advocate of setting your schedule or task list for the next day the night before. This helps keep you focussed on priorities but also hopefully allows you to make a distinction between work and home.”

Jon Boys

Research analyst

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“There are big ticket items that take a lot of time and resource like getting a new qualification, and there are hacks which can be done cheaply and quickly. Staying hydrated is the hack I think has most potential. It’s an instant energy boost and increases your stamina.”

Helen Wilson

EA and chief of staff

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“The first thing I do in the morning is “eat that frog” – do the thing on my list that I put off doing the day before. I try and keep my list no longer than five items, so it remains achievable. It’s not good to eat frogs for breakfast too many days in a row through!”

Tony Danker


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“I am more productive through the people I hire, so I recruit people who thrive on being given ownership of a task with a vision of what is needed rather than full direction.”

Jessica Northend

Corporate affairs director

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“I try and plan my priorities for the next day the evening before. I’m an early riser, so planning ahead means I’m able to tick off my most important task of the day when I first get up. By the time I’m in the office I feel like I’ve already accomplished something. I also like to switch off alerts for texts, WhatsApp and email to carve out a bit of time for concentration.”

James Gribben

PR and communications manager

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“I cycle to the office most days. It’s a great way to fit exercise in to my week and I start work feeling refreshed. My morning bike ride is also a good opportunity to think about my day ahead and what I want to achieve, while I often find myself taking a longer route home, using it as a way to switch off.”

Emma Cooper

Impact and performance manager

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“I'm a huge fan of pomodoro timing (25 minutes on, 5 minutes off) and find it really helps for large and complex tasks. I also like to choose an environment which suits the task – if I need to think creatively I go to a whiteboard and if I need to really concentrate I find a different space in the office. A change of scene really helps.”

Svenya Mueller

Knowledge manager

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“Knowing the value add of my work, feeling the support from an inspiring and collaborative environment and a little bit of time pressure makes me highly productive.”

Paloma Sackman

Flagship programme manager

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“I carve out time in my diary to work on bigger projects. It’s easy to get side-tracked by the smaller tasks that are often quicker and easier to do. I also like to feel like I am getting stuff done on my list so sandwiching smaller quick wins around the bigger things keeps me energised and feeling like things are progressing.”

Kirsty McMorron

Communities development

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“I like to create lists by project area or silo, so I can prioritise and multitask. I think delegating tasks to relevant people or departments is also the key to being productive – the most appropriate person for the task is likely to be the most efficient, hence the most productive way to achieve it.”

Hunter Ruthven


Connect with Hunter

“Planning ahead and scheduling are key to good productivity for me. I like to break my day down into chunks, diarise them and then be strict with myself about stopping one task, even if it’s not finished, and moving onto the next.”

Paul Lantsbury


Connect with Paul

“To improve focus when working in a noisy office, or other environment, I like to plug headphones in and listen to natural sounds such as waves or rainfall. Unlike music, it allows you to tune out the background without it being distracting.”

Gill Paine

Operations assistant

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“Timing is everything for me when it comes to productivity. I am far more productive in the morning, and the earlier the better. I like to have all the big stuff dealt with by lunchtime when my energy is higher and leave the afternoon for follow-up and general admin/prep for the following day.”

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