I understand that the Badger or Bust television programme was on Sky One in May 2007 but because I'm not allowed a Sky subscription (I'd watch far too much sport) I'm catching the series on the repeats on Sky Three that's part of the Freeview package.
At the beginning of the show Rooms With A View is a struggling double gazing firm in Bradford with a turnover of £1.7 million but leads have gone quiet. As a last throw of the dice the directors have splashed out about £100k on a new showroom but it's not working.
It's desperate times so it's the Badger to the rescue...
Ruth Badger, runner up several years ago on The Apprentice with Alan Sugar is now a turnaround business consultant.
Rooms For A View was a small firm with about 25 employees and three salesman.
Now close your eyes after reading the next sentence and keep them closed until you've got a clear visual image. I want you to picture a stereotype double glazing salesman.
Got it clear in your mind?
A killer? Someone who ruthlessly goes after the deal until the prospective customer submits?
Thought so. The double glazing industry has that reputation.
But not these three salesmen.
Two are of mature years and their heart is no longer in it. One says that his aim is to "get as much money from doing as little as possible."
Now you could see that as the definition of efficiency and effectiveness or you could see it as idleness and complacency.
The other salesman was younger, at 45 but admitted that he wasn't committed to the company.
But was this a case of bad apples or bad management?
The management team of two brothers just accepted the situation. There was no leadership and no discipline. The salesmen were indulged with a laugh and a joke.
Unfortunately with weak management and no team spirit the company was in serious trouble and despite Ruth Badger generating focus, energy, caring and commitment into the company it was too late.
After an intensive week and a return visit after a week a way, things were not progressing as they should. On the second return visit after a month, the company was closed.
It had gone into voluntary liquidation.
The directors had given up. They had enough. It was just too difficult.
And this story shows the problem of bring in outside assistance at the 11th hour. The business can start reversing its momentum but sometimes, it is just too late. They run out of time when they run out of cash.
Being television, I wondered whether this was a true story.
Surely no company could be this bad.
But then I went to check Companies House (where all UK companies have to be registered) and here's the entry for Rooms With A View Ltd.
It confirms that the company is in liquidation and the address is care of insolvency practitioners, Begbies Traynor.
Did you watch this episode of Badger or Bust? What did you think?
Was Ruth Badger on the right lines?
If you have a struggling company, don't leave it too late.
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