Welcome to the X-Forces Podcast
Since 2013, the X-Forces Enterprise team has been providing support to Service leavers and members of the military community in order to help them develop the skills and find the finance they need to either become self-employed or to start their own business.
This series of podcasts is dedicated to the incredible men and women who have demonstrated bravery and resilience not only by playing their part in protecting our country’s interests, but also in starting out on their own business ventures.
They will tell you about some of the remarkable experiences they have had and the difficulties they have overcome in order to achieve their goals. They will also share their tips on how they achieved their own successes and some of the mistakes they made along the way.
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Friday Spotlight: Lee Harris-Hamer – Striving For More
Lee Harris-Hamer, XFE Ambassador and owner of White Horse Cleaning Services, delves into what makes him tick, his motivation for starting his business, and the drive and determination behind his desire to keep the business growing and growing – listen to the full episode now.
Rt Hon Lord Young – Start Up Pioneer
Pioneer of the Government’s Start Up Loans Scheme and X-Forces Enterprise Patron, the Rt Hon Lord Young of Graffham CH
A fascinating listen to Lord Young’s personal story and passion for enterprise for youth and community groups, spanning 40 years, including the role he played in Margaret Thatcher’s government to reignite the enterprise economy. Incredibly insightful – and full of Lord Young’s trademark understated wisdom.
Friday Spotlight: James Wilthew - From Afghan With Rugs
James Wilthew, owner of The Afghan Rug Shop and XFE Ambassador for the Yorkshire and Humber region, delves into his unique and inspiring backstory, and shares what being a business owner means to him. From serving in Afghanistan, with the UK Provincial Reconstruction Team, James now provides jobs and local support to that very same community. Hear the full story in our latest Friday Spotlight.
Friday Spotlight: Emma Davies - Embracing Networking
Our latest podcast episode follows the journey of Emma Davies, from the British Army Reserves, through to the inception and growth of her armed forces recruitment agency, Joint Force Alba. X-Forces’ Ambassador for Scotland also delves into how we should embrace networking, and how the ability to network may be ingrained in all of us without us realising it – particularly those in the military community.
Friday Spotlight: Hannah Saunders – “You Just Have To Get The Job Done”
Hannah Saunders, owner of Toddle and newly-appointed X-Forces Ambassador for South Wales, gives us a short history behind Toddle, how her military background has set her up for success in business, and the importance of adapting and pivoting during a crisis.
Friday Spotlight: Carrie Moss – Combatting Loneliness Through Connection
Newly-appointed X-Forces Ambassador for the East Midlands, Carrie Moss, talks us through the inspiration behind her companies Edith Limited and Grandy’s Granddaughter, the journey from ‘then to now’, and how her military background has shaped her and her businesses along the way.
Lt. Col. Deborah Taylor - Inspiring, Innovating and Leading by Example
Lt Col Deborah Taylor is a fiercely passionate advocate for maximising opportunities and leading change for young people getting into the military. Having project managed 2017’s Women 100 event, masterminded the first STEM career fair in 2018 and crowned winner of the 2018 STEM in Defence Award, Colonel Deborah Taylor’s impact on the military community is inspiring to many.
*This podcast was pre-recorded in 2019.
Neel Singh - Adaptive and Resilient
Neel Singh of Dorking Brewery has 3 key values: Be kind, take ownership, get things done. Neel has been a Royal Navy Reservist for almost sixteen years and he is our XFE Military in Business Ambassador for London and the South-East.
*This podcast was pre-recorded in 2019.
Force of Nature: Karen Tracey
In celebration of International Women’s Week, our next podcast champions ‘force of nature’ Karen Tracey, who is our Military in Business Ambassador for the West Midlands. Karen has enjoyed three careers, so far, nine years in the military, 20 years in corporate business and, more recently, her own business. In fact *2020 marks the 10th anniversary of her business, developing and training senior business leaders. Karen is one of XFE’s key allies, always willing to give up her time to help and support others. In Karen’s words ‘I think every entrepreneur is a role model to other entrepreneurs’.
*This podcast was pre-recorded in 2019
Keith May – Accounting Services
Former Warrant Officer Keith May tells how he capitalised on education support available whilst serving in the Armed Forces and qualified as an accountant. With transition support of X-Forces Enterprise, he has gone on to set up his own accountancy practice and in turn, now helps members of the Armed Forces community.
Mandy Small, Mother of 2019 Soldiering On Awards Winner, Jamie
Hear how 9 year old Jamie Small, determined to make the tragic death through suicide of his father, Chris , into a way of helping others. We are privileged and humbled to hear Jamie and his mother Mandy’s story through Mandy’s interview with Ren Kapur. And in particular, how something so sad can, in Mandy’s words, be turned into something amazing.
*Please note this podcast was recorded in 2019. Mandy’s SSAFA event, cited in the podcast, will take place on March 14th 2020. Tickets for purchase are available here.