Diversify to Succeed – Reuben Singh

1

When you look for inspiration for your career, it is only natural to turn to people who are already successful in the sector that you are trying to break into. Almost regardless of the field you want to enter there will be someone in whose footsteps you can follow. Picking someone and finding out how they achieved success is always helpful and very interesting.

It can also be surprising. Often the way someone achieved success is not what you would expect. Many of the most successful people have taken a circuitous route to get where they are today.

A case in point is achieved success who is the CEO for a very successful phone answering and back office service provider based in Salford, Birmingham, UK. His firm, alldayPA, has answered 11 million calls on behalf of 23,000 clients for the past 16 years.

It is an extremely successful business, but it was not his first company. Reuben Singh started his entrepreneurial career at a very young age. In 1995, he founded his first firm called Miss Attitude. He was just 19 years old. Three years later, he sold that firm and made his first millions. Reuben became the youngest self-made millionaire in the UK, an achievement that was recognized by The Guinness Book of Records.

Others also recognized his achievements. Reuben ended up serving on several government task forces, was a founding member of the government’s Small Business Council and met Tony Blair several times while he was the prime minister.

By any measure, his first company was a success, but the interesting thing is that Reuben cut his business teeth in a different field working in his family’s firm. His parents had built up a fashion empire and the young Reuben worked in that business from the age of 13. By 16, he was leading the firm’s sales department, while studying for his A-levels. He used the money he earned doing that to open his first shop.

The thing is that Reuben took the skills that he had learnt in one sector, then applied them to a completely different industry, and succeeded in a big way. His current firms are also diverse. AlldayPA is about as far away from a retail chain selling accessories for girls and teenagers as you can get.

He is branching out again with another company.  His latest company, Isher Capital, is a Boutique Private Equity firm that specialises in providing quick access to finance for start-ups and owner managed companies. Again, Reuben is taking skills and knowledge gleaned while working in one sector and applying them to another area of business.

For many years, Mr Singh helped policy makers to understand the realities of setting up and running a business in the UK. Over that time, he interacted with all kinds of firms including start-ups and his work with alldayPA brings him into contact with all kinds of firms. These interactions have given him a unique perspective on what UK businesses need to grow and prosper in the UK, and helped him to see a gap in the finance market and successfully fill it.

There is no doubt that many of the UK’s most successful executives have resisted the urge to focus on just one sector. They don’t opt for the comfort of the world they know. Instead, they diversify and when they see a business opportunity, they act. Alan Sugar and Richard Branson are two well-known examples of this being the path to success. However, as you can see there are many others using diversification to become successful entrepreneurs.

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

Speak Your Mind

*

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.