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Business Advisory



We understand that every business is different, as are the needs, wants and aspirations of each business owner. This understanding forms the foundation of our advice programme, as we support you to take your business to new heights. We help you to create the head space to step back from ‘business as usual’ tasks to focus on activities that will help you to realise a better future.

AdviceFirst’s business advisory team provide the strategic planning, mentoring, advice and coaching support for business owners or senior management teams going for growth. Our aim is simple, we help set you up for long term, sustainable growth and ultimately, bottom line success.

Joining the programme has enabled us to break through the glass ceiling. We now have confidence in our strategies, setting goals and sticking with it. Turnover has tripled and staff doubled over the last 3 years.

Client Testimonial about our Active Management Programme

Gain a high-level insight into how you are performing as a business owner.

We are the link between ideas and action. We help you:

  • Get clarity on where you want to go
  • Identify what you want to achieve with your business and for you personally
  • Keep you accountable for delivering on goal actions

We create movement through aligning you and your team with the strategic goals of the business. We look at the vision and purpose and show how each member of your team contributes on an individual level by:

  • Focusing output on delivering what matters the most
  • Making better decisions based on what’s important even in times of change
  • Creating a highly engaged team, inspiring passion and commitment
  • Achieving greater growth, productivity, performance and profitability

Our programmes are designed to fit you – your wants, your needs and what you value.  They offer different levels of support and can be one-on-one for a business owner or with a management team:

  • Achieving Business Results
  • Active Management Programme
  • Business Success Dashboard
  • Personal and Business Coaching
  • Business Consulting and Advisory
Personal and Business Coaching

As your coach, mentor and business strategist, our team of experienced and qualified business coaches and advisers partner with you to achieve your goals by bringing your business plan to life and supporting you in the realisation of your personal and business visions.

Your business coach and adviser will support you in your leadership development and role as business owner and/or manager. We like to think of ourselves of a business owner’s advisory board, sounding board, and sanity check – all in one.

Duration: The programme takes place over 6 – 12months.


Sharn’s sessions have been hugely helpful and are so practical I can instantly share the knowledge with our team and achieve a direct result. We have already implemented considerable change in a very short space of time since commencing this course; it’s great being goal orientated again and off the day to day tasks.
– Client Testimonial | Business Coaching, 2019

You have a true art and I am very appreciative that I’ve had the opportunity to work with you over the past few months. I’ve has some real learnings and know that I still have work to do but it’s exciting.
– Client Testimonial | Business Coaching, 2019

You have a real knack for understanding people and bringing out their goals and influencing their behaviour.
– Client Testimonial | Business Coaching, 2019

I love that I leave with so much to think about and follow up on. You have a true art and I am very appreciative that I’ve had the opportunity to work with you over the past few months. I’ve has some real learnings and know that I still have work to do but it’s exciting. 
– Client Testimonial | Business Coaching, 2019

I’ve found the sessions invaluable and always leave them feeling invigorated and keen to keep learning and progressing.
– Client Testimonial | Business Coaching, 2019



Business Consulting and Advisory

At times you will want support on the ground, in your business driving change and implementing critical actions in the business plan. Alternatively, you may need expertise on your advisory board. Our business consulting team are experts in many industry areas from retail and hospitality to medical, early childhood to professional services through to FMCG, technology, export, franchise and even wine manufacturing.

Duration: As required, projects are generally 3 – 6 months.


Full of insights and positivity. Just what we needed. 
– Client Testimonial | Business Consulting & Advisory, 2019

Sharn is just so personable and on to it! Her professional delivery of her outcomes based mentoring framework coupled with her focused encouragement and no-frills engaging is I believe, highly beneficial to any business owner.
– Client Testimonial | Business Consulting & Advisory, 2019

 A business owner spends a lot of time in their own head and this can be a challenging and sometimes lonely experience. Sharn’s extensive business acumen based on her outstanding HR ability is naturally supportive and results in achieving clarity around next actions- which is exactly why Sharn’s work is so empowering.
– Client Testimonial | Business Consulting & Advisory, 2019

I am incredibly thankful I followed up on the recommendation that a colleague had strongly suggested to me, that my best next step would be to give Sharn a call!
– Client Testimonial | Business Consulting & Advisory, 2019

Working with Sharn Rayner has been a business life-changing experience over the past year. Without her knowledge, skills and ability I’m positive I wouldn’t have achieved the remarkable business successes to-date.
– Client Testimonial | Business Consulting & Advisory, 2019

Achieving Business Results

Working one-on-one with you and/or your management team.  We use your insights and those of the market and industry, gleaned through workshops, coaching and assessments, to develop your 12 month ‘living’ business plan.  The business plan, or, strategic roadmap, will encompass action plans for each area of the business, including finance, sales, marketing, operations, HR, technology and legal.  

The workshops will re-evaluate the vision, purpose and values of the business and their alignment to the strategic direction. We also investigate how to enhance and leverage leadership capability to aid business success.

Duration: The programme takes place over 2 – 4 weeks.


This has proved to be extremely good for the business. Something that I should have done years ago.
– Client Testimonial | ABR, 2019

The Achieving Business Results course really hit the ‘target’ and was just what I needed to launch me into the next phase of growing my business. The tailored strategic business planning advice was highly supportive and delivered promptly.
– Client Testimonial | ABR, 2019

Active Management Programme

The Active Management Programme builds management and leadership capability through a focus of understanding core management requirements, managing self, managing others and, managing teams. 

Enhanced capability will support business growth, team cohesion, organisational engagement and overall improvements to business performance. The programme has taken world best practice in training and development to deliver a learning experience which incorporates:

  • Online learning – videos, reading and quizzes
  • One-on-one coaching – to support learning and support individual needs
  • Co-lab facilitated sessions – with social learning with peers from differing businesses
  • Active workplace participation – taking learning to the workplace and practice activities designed to enhance management capability
  • Journal completion – to highlight progress and record accountabilities to support personal and professional growth

Duration: The programme takes place over 12 months with activities taking place weekly to embed knowledge, skill development, experience and ability. Actual time to commit to the formal learning and coaching is just 2 hours a month for each attendee. Each organisation requires a minimum of 3 managers or emerging managers to participate in the programme. 

Business Success Dashboard

Knowing how your business is tracking in real time will give you the confidence to make decisions which drive success. The Business Success Dashboard shows actual results against forecast results and aligns directly to your business plan or strategic roadmap. Your dashboard will highlight what actions to take to ensure that important activity doesn’t fall off the radar.

Sharn Rayner
Sharn Rayner

Head of Business Consulting

Sharn thrives on businesses and owners excelling. She has expertise in strategic planning, transformational coaching, leadership development and organisational development. Having won accolades in strategic planning, business growth and organisational success, her knowledge, insight and experience has been valuable in her roles as CEO, managing director and business owner – as well as a partner to clients in New Zealand, Australia and the UK.

Gwyn Thomas
Gwyn Thomas

Business Adviser

Gwyn is an award-winning business adviser, who owns 2 small businesses and has coached and mentored over 450 small business owners. He has experience with retail, manufacturing, wine, export and software industries. He is passionate about helping SMEs in strategic planning, business development plan and execution, mentoring and coaching. Gwyn has over 20 years’ experience marketing, leading people and building innovative, successful businesses.

Mike Kensington
Mike Kensington

Leadership & Strategy Partner

Mike’s passion lies in creating leaders who are effective and successful in business. Whether it is working one-on-one, facilitating management teams, or running executive development programmes, his expertise is in understanding the challenges they face, crafting a best-fit solution and working with them closely to make it a reality. Mike is an experienced and qualified business coach, having worked in senior leadership roles and across a range of industries and organisations.