FREE Event – NE Business Question Time, Thursday 29th September 2011

Got a burning question on PR, marketing, admin,  training, accounting, sales strategy or recruitment and you want a straight answer?
This event is for all businesses to attend and will include a politicians style Question Time.
The only difference is that there will be no politics and our panellists will try to answer your questions with straightforward answers.

The evening will start with Question Time, followed by networking with other like minded businesses over drinks and canapés.

  • Where is it? The Holy Biscuit, 1 Clarence Street, Shieldfield, Newcastle NE21 YHF map
  • When is it? Thursday 29th September 2011, 6pm-9pm
  • How much is it? £FREE .
  • Where can I book? To register your FREE place and pose your question in advance fill in your details below:


The panellists include:

Vicki Stone,Vicki Stone Marketing

Vicki Stone has over 17  years of experience working for ad agencies in the Midlands and has worked on some huge campaigns and clients like rightmove, Denby Pottery, Ford of Britain, National Express and Caterpillar.

Gosforth born Mum of 2 Vicki set up her own marketing communications agency in Newcastle in 2007, after working freelance for agencies on new business. She thought if she can get business in for other agencies, why not get her own clients!

Vicki and her husband Richard Stone work with small businesses in the North East by providing top notch marketing strategy, digital design and events with an emphasis on collaboration to increase more business.

Vicki was a finalist in 2010’s North East Women Entrepreneur of the Year awards and the first Newcastle Enterprise Awards.

Anna Dorward, Anna Dorward Learning Solutions

Anna Dorward is an experienced Learning and Development (L&D) practitioner who has worked in a variety of L&D related roles since 2000 such as:

  • Learning and development consultant for Anna Dorward Learning Solutions Ltd
  • Tutor on CIPD Certificate in Training Practice programme at Newcastle College
  • Training Manager for Government Office for the North East
  • Staff trainer for HMRC

Anna is also a Chartered Member of CIPD and a Member of the Institute for Learning.

Anna Dorward Learning Solutions Ltd provide bespoke training and L&D consultancy helping  clients get the best out of their employees by developing their skills and confidence.

Angela Dawson, Dawson VA Services

Angela Dawson – the admin doctor –  set up her virtual assistant business in May 2007 providing PA, admin and business support to busy business owners who need an extra pair of hands but don’t wish to employ an in-house PA.  Angela has been in the PA/secretarial field for 25 years and is passionate about all things admin.

Angela works with a variety of business owners, with the majority being from the people development sector.  She cures their admin headaches and helps them to free up their valuable time, to allow them to focus on the income-boosting and business growth opportunities that will make their business more profitable.

Dona Skaife, WBS Accountants

Dona Skaife set up WBS Accountants three years ago with the sole aim of providing a personalised level of support not normally available at an affordable price for small businesses and solo professionals.

As an ACCA qualified accountant, with 20 years experience, Dona has developed her skills and expertise from working with different businesses.  Using her knowledge she is able to help smaller businesses have greater control and understanding of their finances, enabling them to focus on their core business.

Passionate about working together with small businesses WBS like to keep it simple and offer sound advice to them at all stages of their development.

Mark Ions, Exclusive Human Resources

Exclusive Human Resources was the creation of Managing Director Mark Ions. With twelve years in the industry, Mark has become known for his professional and ethical business style. This forms the basis of the Exclusive Human Resources philosophy.

His recruitment experience is focused at the senior end, from Directors to Senior Managers across all sectors.

He also has extensive experience of working on HR consultancy projects – examples include co-ordinating the centralisation of the recruitment service for a national housing association, which involved them moving to an online model and the Outsourcing of HR to SME companies.

Sensing a demand in the market for a dedicated, professional recruitment consultancy in the region, Mark launched Exclusive Human Resources in 2007. His ethos of honesty, integrity and quality is the cornerstone of the business and, since its launch; Exclusive Human Resources has grown rapidly under Mark’s direction to become a leading provider of Professional Recruitment and HR Consultancy Services across the North of England.

Away from Exclusive Human Resources he spends a lot of time and energy within the charitable sector. As a main Board Director for HealthWORKS Newcastle he is able to support and guide this large North East charity through the many decisions it needs to make.

In 2009 Mark was elected to the UK Advisory Council for Diabetes UK. He is also a volunteer business mentor for the Prince’sTrust, meeting and guiding two fledgling companies.

Apart from running a business, guiding charities and small business’ – did we mention he also manages to spend time with his young family and endulge his passion for football and cars?!

Sufri Weithers, Pinnacle Solutions UK

Sufri is the founder of Pinnacle Solutions UK and possesses over eighteen years’ of sales experience.

Before setting up his own sales training company, Sufri worked at Orange for eight years as a sales manager, coaching, developing and motivating several teams. He has a wealth of experience in all areas of sales ranging from inbound and outbound telesales to direct sales.

Sufri works with organisations to implement sales strategies focusing on increasing revenues, raising staff motivation and maximising profits.

If you have a question relating to subjects such as sales conversions, the structure of a sale or how to get the most out of your sales team Sufri is the man to ask.

The chair:

Stephen Green, Entrepreneurs Forum and If we can you can challenge

As head of communications at the Entrepreneurs’ Forum, Stephen has interviewed hundreds of the region’s entrepreneurs from all sizes and stages of business.

He’s also overseen the Forum’s Ifwecanyoucan campaign which encourages people from all backgrounds to explore their entrepreneurial potential and be inspired and informed by the experiences and knowledge of those who have been there, done it and got the t-shirt.