Clare is the director of CTCC Solutions, an outsourced credit control service that provides credit management for businesses from invoice creation all the way to chasing outstanding invoices.
Read on to find out about how the networks she has collated has helped CTCC Solutions thrive and what is in store for the future of her company.
You’re quite big in the networking scene down here. Has networking always been a big part of your business and the way you work? Yes massively, right from the beginning. Initially when I was made redundant, I was lucky enough to know a business coaching team. I went to them with my business idea and the first thing they said to me is that you will have to go networking. You’re going to have to get used to selling yourself as a business. Like they say, people buy from people.
You’re a keen advocate for SMEs. What is it about small businesses that draws you towards them? I think because we’re a small business ourselves, we understand why people are working hard on their small businesses. They’re doing it for their families, their small team. It’s more personal for a small business and it can make a massive difference to one, two, or five people.
Cornwall’s quite known for its small businesses. Do you think you’ve grown to be a part of this collective? I hope so. Yeah, I really feel there is a strong small business community. These small businesses can become your supplier or even your client at some point.
There is always that trade and business community spirit going on. It’s a feeling of ‘let’s all work together, bring all of us up as a collective’ rather than just one of us.
Along with all the many things you do, you are now an EA. How is that going? Yes, Enterprise Advisor. It’s been interesting. It’s a way of being able to have conversations with other businesses to see what their issues are when it comes to recruiting and seeing what skills are needed. It’s also very interesting to meet the next generation of young entrepreneurs and the next staff intake too.
One tip for business owners who are struggling with their cash flow. Know where your invoices are is probably the biggest thing. What stage are they at? Make sure they go out on time too. There’s no point in saving up your invoices until you have no money. It could be another few months before you even get your money in. Also knowing your customers is important. And only giving them credit if they’re worthy of it.
What has been the best business advice you have received? There’s been lots of little bits of advice over the years. Yes, believe in your product or service you provide, which I do wholeheartedly. When you do, it becomes easier to explain that to other businesses. Another advice would be, when needed, get a business coach. There will be times throughout every business life where things change. Sometimes having that external person to be that sounding board or just to give you a different perspective is great.
You’ve been in business for a decade now. To what do you owe your success? The support that I’ve got from friends, family, and staff has been great. They’ve always been there to look at new leaflets, review presentations I’ve done. All these things may individually seem small, it is a constant support that definitely makes a difference.
What does the future of CTCC Solutions look like? Good question. I want to be able to help any businesses with their cash flow.
Whether that is short term, long term, and have enough members of staff to help anyone that needs it. I think having a happy team of amazing problem solvers is also what I want for CTCC. I’d love to grow the team too. I think having a team big enough to help more and more businesses would be absolutely amazing.