What does it mean to be a successful businessman / woman?’ All our clients are business people, yet they all run very different businesses and approach business in different ways. Some see success as expanding overseas, others by running a sustainable lifestyle business.
However, the one thing they all have in common is that they are incredibly driven and passionate about what they do.
When Nick Harvey decided at a young age he wanted to be a ‘businessman’ – he wasn’t really sure what that meant, and could not imagine that he would go on to run a multi-million-pound business.
At just 17, Nick started working with his father, who was then the Managing Director of MEL Group. Nick began as an administrator but took it upon himself to get to grips with the individual companies that made up the Group, as well as working for brief periods of time in all the individual departments. This gave Nick great insight into how the business operated and the foundation and knowledge on which to build his future career.
From his drive in the early years to learn as much about the business as possible, Nick began to recognise niches in markets that the business hadn’t originally planned for. Consequently, at just 26, Nick formed MEL Aviation Components Ltd.
Today, MEL Aviation Components Ltd is one of the largest stockists of safety equipment in Europe and has achieved consistent year-on-year growth. In 2013, the company turned over £1.25million. As of 2018, the company is turning over a mega £12.6million and is scheduled to turnover £18million this financial year.
As of 2018, MEL Aviation Components is turning over £12.6million and is scheduled to turnover £18million this financial year.
Nick’s ability to be able to identify opportunities and create his own prospects has been key to MEL Aviation Components Ltd’s success. It is also the part of the job that really motivates Nick – “not knowing where the next opportunity will come from but being ready and alert to capitalise on it when it does”.
Nick’s ambition is truly inspirational. Not one to sit still, Nick is always looking at moving forward and is now focusing on turning MEL Aviation Components Ltd into one of the largest aircraft rotable companies in the UK.
However, it hasn’t all been plain sailing. Nick achieved his dream of becoming a businessperson, but encountered many obstacles, “I hadn’t realised quite how many things don’t go exactly as you planned. The need, therefore, to adapt is critical to success and overcoming challenges.”
Nick faced “pretty much every challenge you could imagine”. The business grew very fast for a new business, which meant issues were encountered with “staff turnover, cash flow and being able to find good sales people.”
“I hadn’t realised quite how many things don’t go exactly as you planned. The need, therefore, to adapt is critical to success and overcoming challenges.”
Nick had to be resilient to overcome these challenges and find quick solutions to ensure the growth of the company wasn’t hindered:
“Clydesdale Bank were instrumental in our growth and provided us with a term loan, CID facility and stock facility which assisted our cash flow greatly.”
Nick has since been able to resolve his cash flow issues. However, he is honest and admits that being a trading/distributor means that Sales Roles are incredibly important, yet the company still struggles to fill them. This is an area that the company is still working on overcoming and will not stop until they find a solution.
Nick’s drive is what has made MEL Aviation Component Ltd what it is today. For future entrepreneurs and aspiring business people, Nick stresses that, “you must be willing to be as flexible as possible with customers, whilst seizing opportunities as and when they come”. Nick has taken a lot of calculated risks with MEL Aviation Components Ltd, which have “almost” all paid off, but his customers have always been the driving force behind his decisions.
Also, Nick cannot stress enough the importance of being flexible to achieve your business goals:
“You need a plan, but be prepared that to get to where you want to be you will need to adapt accordingly and be flexible. You must be willing to change your plan in accordance with the general market conditions and the opportunities that come up and when”.
Nick now strives to covert MEL Aviation Components Ltd into a £100million a year business, before he goes back to the MEL Group to relieve some pressure from his Dad. With Nick’s drive and determination, we have no doubt that it won’t be long before this is achieved. To find out more about MEL Aviation Components Ltd, visit their website www.themelgroup.co.uk.
To see how Raffingers can support you and your business endeavour, contact us.