Fresh Banter (formerly Let Me Introduce You with Jane Milton)
Fresh Banter with Simon Ralphs, aka the Restaurant Lawyer
Fresh Banter with Simon Ralphs , the commercial real estate partner at Clarks Legal. Simon and I met via Twitter many years ago when he was often talking about food and drink, food trucks and restaurants….
These days he is often on Instagram – find him as @therestaurantlawyer
Over the years he has made referrals to me, and I have asked him to talk with businesses we are working with too.
Simon nearly became a dentist, but a work experience opportunity lead him into law and then over time he has been able to merge his passion for food with his work too…
He talks about people from whom he learned about how to get the best from his team , about how important it is to make time for the people in your business and other very people focussed skills.
We discuss getting to grips with being able to say you are ‘good’ at something and how it is necessary to promote your work but does not always sit comfortably
He talks about learning to embrace change and welcome it and how the pandemic has allowed him to re-examine, reset and reboot how he works and what the business does too.
Simon offers some great advice if you are setting up a new business too and his calm and friendly manner is why we are always happy when we can refer clients to him.
So let me Introduce You to Simon Ralphs....
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10. Fresh Banter with Giles Christopher ,Food, Drink & Hospitality Photographer01:00:48Fresh Banter with Giles Christopher, the food, drink and hospitality photographer Giles and I met many years ago through his wife and business partner Abi, and since then we have all worked on a lot of jobs together and have spent a lot of time together socially chatting about business and life. He got some great advice from his Dad about offering to do things nobody else likes to do at work and making himself a valuable team member and sound found he had multiple job offers … He’s run his own business for over 20 years and we talk about how basic business skills should be part of the curriculum for everyone nowadays He shares about the prep that goes into shoots and how technology has changed the job so much and how much time photographers now spend in post production too. And about the sheer weight of kit that he takes to 'location' shoots too. Giles loves tech and is always pushing himself to learn new ways of doing things , or master new equipment and he also talks about keeping up with and ahead of that if you can A really interesting insight into all that food and drink photography involves, and some great tips for podcasts and business blogs to watch out for too. I’m really pleased we managed to book Giles for a chat in this last episode of series 3… Let me introduce you to Giles Christopher
9. Fresh Banter with David Koenig-Green, Food Technologist and Founder of Food Industry Support41:04Fresh Banter with David Koenig- Green, Food technologist , BRCGS and SALSA consultant….and no, that is not a dance or a tomato based sauce! David is our go to technologist within the business because he can distil down a seemingly complicated issue into a few actions you need to take in order to become compliant or for best practice. We have been working with him for close to 14 years . We love working alongside him on label wording and layout , trying to strike a balance between what we must say, can’t say and would really like to say – so we get a legal label that uses the best of good practice to make it easy for consumers to understand and with enough marketing to help the product sell Hear what the Christmas present was that shaped David’s career …. What food he can never get too much of … What products and categories he thinks we will see more development and growth in this year What advice he would give to others starting their own consultancy as a food technologist
8. Fresh Banter with Darren Foley, Founder of FLY the Boutique Brand and Design Consultancy56:05Fresh Banter with Darren Foley Founder of FLY boutique brand and design agency Darren and I were introduced many years ago when he joined my Fresh Banter mastermind group and he is still part of a tight knit group that developed from that.It’s invaluable for business owners and leaders to have somewhere they can:discuss issues with peers,learn from othersexpect honest answers to difficult questions. Having left school, a friend suggested he may want to apply to be a junior designer in her work place and as soon as he went there he knew he had found his tribe! He spends time now talking about careers in design to younger people to help them understand all the opportunities that creative industries offer. Darren loves working with food and drink brands and has recently taken a non exec directorship at Soda Folk – he relishes being involved from every angle of the business and adding value throughout. He’d like to think people can see his integrity and depth of knowledge, and that in turn builds their trust in what he can deliver for them. He talks about:Whether challenger and icon are the most useful ways to describe businessesHow he values a business partner he can bounce ideas off,We laugh about what our Mums think about the work we do. Darren loves to be around positive creative people and to have access to nature and outdoor space. He has some good advice for people starting out and his list of things you can never get ‘too much’ of is extensive. Wherever you are listening, I know you will enjoy this podcast and get something that resonates from it too.
7. Fresh Banter with Lorna Davidson, Founder & CEO at RedWigwam.com01:00:11Fresh Banter with Lorna Davidson , CEO and founder of Red Wigwam , a flexible work booking platform serving workers and hirers and allowing both parties to be in control of the way they work , but allowing the workers the security of PAYE, pensions etc …. She has over 200,000 workers registered after just over 4 years . Red Wigwam matches workers to jobs in their area that require the skills they have and workers can book whichever jobs they wish. Lorna is an entrepreneur who loves growing businesses and with a strong sales background from Kelloggs and then Mars , She first created Tactical Solutions a field sales business that she sold after 13 years of profitable growth. Somewhere in among all that Lorna also managed to fit in having 3 children , 2 of whom work with her at Red Wigwam. Lorna thinks that people may often underestimate her knowledge and skills when they first meet her, but once they get into conversation they quickly realise that Lorna certainly knows her way round her business. Lorna is an avid reader, and will ready just about anything – it’s one of her favourite ways to switch off. Somebody challenged her recently to think of 100 things she really wants to do. She says it has been an incredible exercise in making her think about what and why she wants things and so far she only has 68 items on her list … She really believes work should be fun and that everyone should enjoy the time they spend working and be able to have fun too …That’s been at the heart of both the businesses she has launched and grown and so certainly seems to serve her well. She has a really great tip for anyone starting their own business , one that really could transform that business. Let Me introduce you to Lorna Davidson, I think you are going to really enjoy the conversation and pick up some real gems of advice too
5. Fresh Banter with Scott Goodfellow, Jam Maker to The Queen47:58Fresh Banter with Scott Goodfellow, the Joint MD of Wilkin and Sons often referred to as ‘ Tiptree’ Jam and condiment makers , based in the Essex village of Tiptree. More recently the business has expanded into gin liqueurs made with their fruits, acquired and opened tearooms in and around Essex and Suffolk …. And created a homewares range of candles, aprons and other products inspired by their jams. Scott talks about growing up in Dundee and how he thought he may follow his sister into the police force but in fact he studied engineering and embarked on a graduate training programme with Unilever, then followed some years working for Mars as a shift manager and then a move into sales with Mars. He has been at Wilkin’s now for 14 years, so is still a relative newcomer compared to some of the staff…. Scott says a business can never have enough talent and loves to recruit people who will stretch them as a business and push them to see things differently. I learned that their lime marmalade makes a very good mojito, something that I must put to the test …. All in the interests of research. Wilkin and Sons have held the Royal Warrant since 1911 so Scott says his job is jam maker to the Queen. Their products are sold in over 70 countries around the World. The business has a great culture but is inspiring in how open and inclusive they are to hearing other people’s ideas and thoughts and as you will hear that is how some great products have come to be made.
4. Fresh Banter with Sam Duong, CEO of Ming Foods41:11Fresh Banter with Sam Duong, the CEO of Ming Foods . Sam and I first met when I ran some workshops for food businesses around 20 years ago for Greater London Authority. Then he became a member of our Fresh Banter Full Works group in 2015, and formed a close bond with the rest of his cohort, using them as a sounding board and also contributing to issues they are looking at. Sam is very considered and reflective and I love having a conversation with him as he will often make me challenge my thinking. *Hear him talk about his mindset*His ‘go big or go home' attitude*How he has been able to step back and work on his business*About diversification and about considering his IP *How grateful he is that he purposefully set out to find his soulmate *His parents, and his family background as Vietnamese refugees *What he has been reading recently – 2 great books
3. Fresh Banter with Francis Gimblett, author of the Gimblett's Guide to The Best of British Cheese, and Co-Owner of Taste of the Vine, an Interactive Food and Drink Events Business. ,53:35Fresh Banter with Francis Gimblett, Author of Gimblett's Guide to the Best of British Cheeses, and co Owner of Taste of the Vine, an interactive food and drink event company.Francis and I met in Spring 2021 when I joined one of his monthly Friday evening meet the cheesemaker tasting sessions. I learned so much and loved meeting the cheesemakers. I told other people and very quickly was joined on screen by 10-12 friends each month ....My copy of Francis book , Gimblett's Guide to the Best of British Cheeses has become very well thumbed and through it i have tracked down cheesemakers around the UK and even found a cheesemaking course in Tottenham, London inspired by him.He is a great story teller so i know you will enjoy hearing about :his journey in food and drinkpeople who have inspired or encouraged himhis French mother's cooking and how that added to his food journeyhow he has for many years, resisted repitition and always desired change, t learn or to reinvent things BUThow possibly now after almost 2 years of constant change, he my just be happy for a little more predictability for a whilewe talk about work life balance and partnering in business with his wifeabout the importance of understanding your P&L and planning for your business right from Day 1we also get a hint or two about his next taste adventure....I cannot wait
2. Fresh Banter with William Chase, Inspirational Food Entrepreneur and Driving Force Behind the Willy's ACV Brand01:02:29Fresh Banter with William Chase, He is a truly inspiring food and drink entrepreneur. His career in farming has seen him as a commercial potato grower, create Tyrells Potato Crisps, then Chase Spirits and now Willy’s ACV a wellness brand with a cluster of new fermented products on their way.He shares that he would love to inspire and encourage others and that his greatest influencers are people who inspire him to try new things, have a go , do something differently, which he is clearly always up for doing himself.Growing up on a very mixed farm with access to the countryside, fresh produce and small scale animal rearing and the most delicious Jersey milk, gave him a foundation to appreciate good food.Recently his interest in fermenting , eating well and having a better overall balance in his life, has led him to adjust his diet and his lifestyle and he is clearly enjoying learning and sharing that journey and what it has taught him with others.I know this episode will leave you feeling so good about how we can produce food in the UK, about changing attitudes to food and wellness and feeling inspired and filled with hope about opportunities to be entrepreneurial too....