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Meet ABM Mentor James Talbot


February 12, 2024

Supporting CEO’s scale and prepare their successful small businesses for sale.

In this blog, we speak with ABM Full Member, experienced professional Business Mentor James Talbot about his mentoring approach, professional qualifications and how his ABM membership supported his mentoring journey.

Part 1: Your Mentoring Practice

Why did you become a business mentor?

I love all there is about business in all its various forms.  When I had a rough ride with a business partner, I did some personal development and it followed on from there. It’s been fun and the time has flown by!

I have had the privilege of being mentored by James over the past 6 months, and I cannot speak highly enough about the tremendous impact he has had on me and my business.

He is a true professional in every sense of the word. His approach to coaching is marked by a rare combination of expertise, care, and meticulousness. From the outset, he demonstrated a genuine interest in understanding the nuances of my business, its challenges, and opportunities. I wholeheartedly recommend James to any individual or business seeking a coach who combines expertise with a caring and meticulous approach. He is an invaluable asset to any business endeavour.
Petru, Founder at Lycaeum Music

What are your qualifications to be a Business Mentor?

In short: I have done a lot of business!  

I have had four of my own business and run a number for some corporates. During the last thirty years, I have bought, sold and turned around companies across Britain in sectors as diverse as packaging, lighting and stockbroking as well as chemicals and oil. In addition, I have worked with many company owners, CEO’s and other senior managers coaching them through their leadership and business issues, over 10,000 hours at the last count.  

In terms of professional qualifications, I have completed the ILM 7 in Business Mentoring and Coaching through the ABM. I also have an MBA and am a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Securities & Investment.  In addition, I was the first Director of Development for the International Coaching Federation in the UK and a founder member of the Association of Coaching.

James’ coaching and guidance has been invaluable in our journey of founding and growing Vimbo Health. He challenges me in the right areas and makes me ask new questions and look at issues with a fresh perspective. From concept to rolling out our first product, James has guided us all the way and I look forward to continuing to benefit from his wisdom!
Tafi Mazikana CEO Vimbo Health

Who are your typical mentoring clients?

I mainly work with founders and owner/managers of successful small business who are looking to grow their companies for exit. Whether they have been going for 5 months or 15 years, together we explore the different opportunities to grow the value of their business and employ necessary strategies to prepare for a successful exit.  

I also work with new directors, mentoring them as they grow into their new positions. This includes   supporting them in their development of leadership skills, board management and long-term business planning.  


Part 2: Your ABM Membership

Why did you join the ABM?

I joined the ABM just before lockdown because I felt that founders and owners need business knowledge as well as the personal support that coaching gives. For me it has always been about supporting a person, usually the owner, in running a business.

What have been the top three benefits you’ve experience as an ABM member?

I really enjoyed working on the pathfinder qualification group. Getting the ILM 7 qualification was a bonus! It was like doing my driving test all over again, making me realise which areas in my mentoring practice needed improvement and reflecting on how I can provide a better experience for my mentees.  

I also enjoy being part of the regional London network. The regional events are a fantastic way to connect with fellow mentors.  

Also, supporting the ABM with the Help to Grow programme was a fantastic opportunity for me.

Why would you recommend joining the ABM to other business mentors?

First of all, it's fantastic to be part of such a experienced community of business mentors. Gaining a recognised qualification and having access to professional mentoring supervision is also very useful. With the change in technology and markets getting ever quicker, it is really useful to have the ABM support us as the legal and regulatory environment also change.

Also, from a client perspective, I think being part of the ABM differentiates you from other mentors as it adds credibility.

What are your future goals as a professional business mentor?

This is a difficult one. With tech advancing as fast as it is and AI hurtling down on the mentoring sector at a speed, I definitely need to learn more about this could impact my mentoring practice and how I can use it to be a better mentor. Thankfully, people are changing less quickly and I see an opportunity to do more with the newer generations as they put into practice what is important to them.

About James Talbot

With thirty years experiences, James has built up a deep knowledge of business. Not just the fundamentals but also at the cutting edge of management and technology with specific expertise in financial services/FinTech and light engineering. He supports CEOs of successful SMEs who want to scale and sell their business.

Discover more about his mentoring services here.

Connect with James!



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