Talking Business with Geoff Hudson-Searle
The modern Gent likes to be seen as an approachable man who embraces new trends and feels confident in what he does. Business is a way of life and something that is a part of him but does not define him. The entrepreneurial streak reflects his opportunistic vision on life and that all things can be achieved.
One man who encapsulates all that is Gent about the modern entrepreneur is Geoff Hudson-Searle. I had the pleasure of working with Geoff a number of years in a different guise and was impressed with his natural charm and effortless relaxed approach to work. Since then, Geoff has written a book about the art of communicating at work and in the modern world in general entitled “Meaningful Conversations”.
I was a little apprehensive at first as business guides, I have always felt, are rather American in their outlook. I feel that, quite often, they are only relevant to the experiences of the writer and are a collection of power-phrases and long winded, overly complex explanations.
“Meaningful Conversations” is a simple and actually enjoyable read. One of its main deviations from the norm is that it is split into short, sharp chapters making concise and relevant points. The book does not also have that preachy quality which one usually associates with business guides. The relevance of the book is all –encapsulating to whatever level you feel you are at in the business world. It gives simple advice to the soul trader as well as the corporate employee looking for meaning. I hate to say it, I genuinely found the book to be a pleasant experience which covered not just an outlook to the modern business world but to life in general.
Having read the book Geoff kindly took time out to have a chat with me:
WG: Hi Geoff, thanks for meeting with me. Obviously our focus here is on SW London. What is your connection to SW London?
GHS: I have always lived in South West London, spending the majority of my time in Wimbledon Village, Barnes and now Chiswick Park. You will still often see me in the Village at the Ivy Cafe reminiscing and writing those special experiences, those memorable stories from our past and foresight’s for the future, that will always contain the line ‘and as it all happened or as it is going to happen’
WG: In a world full of business guides, especially in the American market, what do you feel separates yours from that field?
GHS: Many business books in the open market discuss what makes the author so successful at their accomplishment, “Meaningful Conversations” across 54 short chapters demonstrates the relationship between communications (human 2 human, human 2 technology, human 2 bot and robot), strategy and business development and growth. Readers will gain insights into topical subjects, components of Communications, Strategy and Business Development and Growth, including a wide range of tips, models and techniques that will help to build strong and effective solutions in today’s business world. It is important to understand that a number of the ideas, developments and techniques employed at the beginning as well as the top of a business can be successfully made flexible to apply the terms ‘Communications’, Strategy’ and Business Development and Growth’ not least forgetting the fact that these have become overused during the last decade and have become devalued as a result. In my book I aim to simplify these terms and to re-value management and leadership by addressing topics and subjects in each distinctive chapter. This book provides a holistic overview of the essential leading methods of techniques. It will provide you with a hands-on guide for everyone across business and life.
WG: For me I was surprised about the holistic approach you take in some of your writing. This is surely a clean break from the traditional, almost stuffy, image of business. What took you down that path?
GHS: The idea for the name “Meaningful Conversations” came to me because to some extent or other all of us carry a reflection of the experiences of our lives. However, whether and how we succeed is determined at least in part by how we cope with those experiences and what we learn from them. The only exception is that nobody has ever written transparently across the highly complex world in which we live and operate within our business and personal life’s, people try to divide their lives, but the reality is we only have one life. I would want the reader to walk away with determination to never, never give up on the dream. The dream becomes reality and you are the master of that journey.
WG: In the modern world of social media and whatsapp, do you feel that communication on a face-to-face level is something of a lost art?
GHS: Social technologies have broken the barriers of space and time, enabling us to interact 24/7 with more people than ever before. But like any revolutionary concept, it has spawned a set of new barriers and threats. In an ironic twist, social media has the potential to make us less social; a surrogate for the real thing. For it to be a truly effective communication vehicle, all parties bear a responsibility to be genuine, accurate, and not allow it to replace human contact altogether. I think the answer to a balanced life is to have human 2 human and creative time, send flowers, write cards, poetry, read real books, integrated with email, social media and collaboration tools. What ever happened to picking up the phone, or talking to someone face-to-face over coffee, I guess we do we not have time.
WG: Finally, what inspired you to write this book?
GHS: I started as a writer with a non-fiction, “Freedom after the Sharks”, and “Meaningful Conversations” was always to be a fiction. The book deals with the constant root cause of today’s plethora of life and business challenges. It explores the why’s and wherefores of communications, strategy and development and growth in our ways of thinking and experiencing the world, and then uncovers a way ahead through 54 short stories backed by research from MIT, Harvard, Stamford, Oxford and Cambridge. It draws upon Eastern and Western wisdom and blends philosophy with pioneering new thought. Are you up for crossing the threshold? In “Meaningful Conversations” you will find the answers to our most pressing challenges in business and life.
WG: Thank you for your time Geoff
So there you have it; an interesting and thoroughly thought-provoking take on he modern world of business. If you want to buy “Meaningful Conversations”, it is available via Amazon, Apple, Google Play, Nook, Kodo, Smashwords, Waterstones, Barnes and Noble in hardback, paperback, kindle, e-book and direct from the publisher via Matador.