Spotlight On: Mike Dunn, Managing Director of Excel TM Group
Introducing Mike Dunn – the managing director of Excel TM Group, an innovative company that specialises in running construction telemarketing and lead generation campaigns. Read on to hear his story; how he founded his company, the biggest challenges he has faced to date and whether he would recommend entrepreneurship to others.
1 – Please tell us a bit about who you are and what you do.
My name is Mike Dunn and I am 33 years old. I’m from Chester and have a wife named Sian and a 5-year-old daughter called Scarlett. Excel TM Group specialise in construction-specific telemarketing and lead generation. We work with anyone that has a product or service that fits into the construction sector and the built environment. Our clients range from large global companies like Dulux paint to smaller one-man bands who consult Architects. Our aim is to build long-lasting and transparent relationships with our clients from the very start of the trial and to work with them to generate ROI throughout.
2 – How and when did you get started?
I set the company up in January 2020 in my back bedroom with nothing more than a broken desk and a borrowed laptop from my good friend. With just 20p in the bank and my mobile; the journey began!
3 – What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced so far?
Like most companies in the UK and across the world, Covid was by far our biggest challenge! Due to the fact that Excel TM Group were set up a couple of months before the pandemic started, we naturally didn’t qualify for any funding and of course were at risk of losing everything. Obviously, at the time no one knew how this would end and worse still when it would! With clients confirming that they would not be able to proceed with the campaigns and unfortunately cancelling contracts I had to make a difficult decision – work completely free of charge and hope for the best. It might sound risky but it was the only choice that I could make, my thought process was to work for free and do a great job – hopefully, from doing this the clients would either:
A. Offer me a job at the end as I have a family to support.
B. Stay with Excel and help the company get started properly.
I’m delighted to say that they are both still with us now 😊
4 – What has been your most satisfying moment so far?
There have been a few but the most satisfying moment so far has been making the final for the great British entrepreneur awards – Service Industries – Northwest. The reason being is that we have been going less than 2 years and have already surpassed most of our competition. It was also made sweeter by the fact we have had some competitors try and ruin things for Excel by sending tweets from company pages, following us to meetings and trying to poach staff. Suffice to say there are now 21 of us 😊
5 – Would you recommend entrepreneurship to others?
Like everything, it must be right for you! Entrepreneurship is one of the most rewarding and stressful processes you can go through. If you think that you will make millions straight away then think again. It’s a tough slog that requires patience, motivation, and the ability to learn from failure. If you have an idea or a better way of working and want to take the bull by the horns then yes, I would definitely recommend entrepreneurship. However – if this sounds scary or sounds like you couldn’t do it then it might not be for you and if so, don’t feel disheartened! Success comes in many forms.
6 – What was your motivation to become an entrepreneur?
I had spent years moaning to my wife about problems in the workplace and how I could do things better and after years of her listening to it she “encouraged” me that it was time. We had also had some heartbreak along the way, between losing a baby, having a bad bill of health and being on the back end of a horrid ex-boss I decided enough was enough. I spoke with ex-colleagues who told me they wanted to leave their current role due to bad treatment and how ex-clients were fed up with receiving bad service. Naturally, it felt like the right time! My biggest motivation of course is my wife Sian and my daughter Scarlett, they push me every day and help me to become a better person as well as a better boss.
7 – What drives you? What motivates you?
FAILING! The fear of failing is the thing that drives me the most. It sounds so silly but being scared actually helps me. My family is my WHY and of course my motivation. Knowing your ‘why’ is crucial to being successful because it’s the reason you get out of bed in the morning and the thing that pushes you most when days get tough.
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If you found this ‘Spotlight On’ article interesting and want to find out more about Mike Dunn or his company, Excel TM Group, then head to their website here.
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