My belief

“People choosing to run their own businesses want to get away from people telling them what to do.”

You will be pleased to know that as your business coach, I will never tell you what to do, nor what I would do if I were in your position. Instead, I listen to you so that I can truly understand, and then my challenges will force you to think through your situation from a different perspective so that you will come up with your solution.

You will learn to focus on achievable outcomes that you believe in, that will stage by stage grow your ambitions and make your business more profitable.

Can you honestly say that your business is performing exactly as you hoped it would? As the person in charge, the ultimate success of your company depends on what you do and how you do it.

So if you want your company’s performance to change you will have to adjust the way you think and act in order to get different results – that’s where I can help.

What I have done

Christopher Elwes - Business Coach BerkshireIn 1968 I began my career as a Fine Art Auctioneer, working for the world famous auctioneers Christies and was responsible for opening up Christies South Kensington and driving it from sales of £1m to over £40m.

In 1987 I had the opportunity to buy into the family-owned auction house Bonham’s. Although having been in existence since 1793 Bonham’s had failed to match the growth of the three other London Auctioneers and with annual sales trailing at around £7m it was failing to make a profit.

Despite starting the business expansion at the beginning of a deep recession and remaining all the while undercapitalised, by the late 1990s we had built the company into a profitable business with sales in excess of £32m and with 3 further salerooms in UK and branch offices in all the other major UK centres.

We had a fine reputation for their specialised and professional approach to sales and were market leaders in several areas. Overseas we had an affiliated office/saleroom in New York and sales operations in Singapore and Tokyo.

We sold the company in 2001.

More history

Christopher Elwes joined Christies, the world famous International Fine Art Auction house , in 1968. In 1975 Christies purchased Debenham Coe, a tiny auction room in London’s South Kensington, with the intention of opening a secondary Christie’s saleroom to handle their lower value property. Christopher was appointed one of two directors who were responsible for 20 members of staff. At the time of purchase Debenham Coe had sales of under £1m.By the end of the first year they had achieved sales in excess of £2m.

Christopher went on to develop the concept of mass advertising for goods for sale, sponsoring the birth of the Antiques Trade Gazette and advertising in newspapers and radio, media which was considered an industry first. Christopher then achieved another industry first with the birth of his Valuation day service, which was to later inspire the BBC’s Antiques Road show.

Valuation days involved taking teams of experts to provincial towns and offering free valuations. The first of these was in Hereford in 1978 and goods were consigned for sale in excess of £100,000, at today’s values probably over £2m. Up till then it was impossible for anyone in the middle classes to get a valuation from an auctioneer unless they travelled to London. The Valuation day concept was immensely popular and was rapidly copied by Sotheby’s and Phillips.

In the 1980’s he was appointed CEO of the company. When he left a few years later Christies South Kensington had grown from 20 employees and sales of £1 million to 170 staff members and eye watering sales of £35 million.

So in 1987 Christopher, along with another Christie’s director, bought in to the family –owned auction house Bonham’s. Although having been in existence since 1793 Bonham’s had failed to match the growth of the three other London Auctioneers and with annual sales trailing at around £7m it was failing to make a profit.

Despite starting the business expansion at the beginning of a deep recession and remaining all the while undercapitalised, by the late 1990s they had built the company into a profitable business with sales in excess of £32m and with 3 further salerooms in UK and branch offices in all the other major UK centres. They had a fine reputation for their specialised and professional approach to sales and were market leaders in several areas. Overseas they had an affiliated office/saleroom in New York and sales operations in Singapore and Tokyo.

Testimonials
“In less than 2 hours with Christopher, we had analysed our new business proposal,  focussed on where we needed to make important decisions, motivated the team and put us on the right path. It was harder than being in front of all the Dragons and probably more effective.” I would certainly recommend an initial meeting with Christopher, whether starting a new business or trying to ressurrect an existing one.”

Dennis Winderbank – Managing Director, Ravenbridge Ltd


“I was introduced to Christopher three years ago. Over this time he has totally transformed my approach to business administration and my confidence in driving a company forward. He is uniquely qualified to advise on art based companies having learnt through a life of experience in the industry.”

Jonathan Pratt – Managing Director, Bellmans Fine Art Auctioneers


“Christopher’s coaching gives you the ability to look at situations differently and does not tell you how but helps you identify your own decisions with confidence. He certainly makes you think! I highly recommend Christopher, he is a true professional who makes valuable contributions to anyone or any business.”

Rachel Doerr – Managing Director, Pall Mall Art Advisors Ltd.

More testimonials
“Christopher has been a rock of support for my company and has provided invaluable business guidance and mentoring for nearly ten years. He gets straight to the heart of the challenges that face the company, and has a comprehensive network of advisers at his fingertips for help with specific issues.”

Richard Williams – Managing Director, Richard Williams Furniture Ltd.


“Christopher is a highly skilled motivating coach. Using his extensive insight and wisdom to analyse the core of a given problem, he has enabled me to heal work situations from the inside out. He is both professional and amazing.”

Sara Rollason – Managing Director, Pharmabotics Ltd.


“Christopher is providing us with valuable ongoing support, helping to move the company forward by personal development and providing clear goals for the future. Christopher is an excellent judge of character and knows how to get the best out of people through his knowledge and experience.”

Brian Fry, Black Cat Displays Ltd.

Yet more testimonials
“I have worked with Christopher for over 6 months. I have found the experience enjoyable, interesting and developmental. I am a keen student of psychology and take self-development very seriously, points that Christopher took into consideration and incorporated into our regular meetings. As a businessperson the two things that most people will want answers to are (1) was it value for money and (2) did you learn anything valuable. Without hesitation, I can answer both questions affirmatively. The series of training provided value for money and I have learnt a number of very interesting and challenging concepts that I am already putting into practice in my personal and business life. As such if you are looking to understand who you are and why you make the decisions that you make, whilst making any necessary improvements, I think that Christopher can help you.”

Nick Peacock, Ascendant Recruitment Ltd.


“Christopher is providing us with valuable ongoing support, helping to move the company forward by personal development and providing clear goals for the future. Christopher is an excellent judge of character and knows how to get the best out of people through his knowledge and experience.”

Brian Fry, Black Cat Displays Ltd.


“When at Christie’s I was coached by Christopher in his Leadership Development programme. I found his direct approach to management and organisational skills extremely helpful. It was comforting to find out that some of the management issues I was experiencing are common amongst managers. Christopher’s advice has always been extremely useful to me and continues to be so.”

Martin Beisly

Number of Endorsements on LinkedIn

Entrepreneurship 34
Coaching 27
Business Coaching 21
Management 19
Business Development 18
Personal Development 16

Christopher Elwes
Tel:
01635 579927
Email: christopher@andcoaching.com

Connect with Christopher on LinkedIn

Based near Newbury , I am happy to work in London and anywhere else up to about an hours drive from Newbury.

Area covered (click the map to view full size)