Fogle tells young entrepreneurs about the "importance of preparation"

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Fogle tells young entrepreneurs about the "importance of preparation"

Ben Fogle, the adventurer and broadcaster, says preparation is key, whether you are planning an expedition or setting up a new business.

Fogle, a Prince's Trust Ambassador, was chairing a panel of inspirational speakers delivering a workshop to a group of fledgling entrepreneurs at Prince’s Trust House.

The group, all from London and at the start of their enterprise journey, heard Ben talk about how he’d got through difficult times.

Fogle first came into the public spotlight by taking part in the BBC reality show Castaway 2000, which followed a group of 36 people marooned on the Scottish island of Taransay for a year with the aim of creating a self-sufficient community.

Since then he has partnered Olympic rower James Cracknell in the 3,000 mile Atlantic Rowing Race, and completed the six day Marathon des Sables, running 160 miles across the Sahara desert. Fogle also took part in the inaugural South Pole Race, suffering hypothermia and frostbite in termperatures as low as -40 degrees C.

He said: "I have learnt about the danger of complacency, the importance of preparation and planning and the power of drive and determination through my various expeditions and adventures, all of which have business parallels."

Established jewellery entrepreneur Julie McAlpin also spoke about her business journey, while RBS Enterprise Manager Nick Howe was on hand to offer practical advice.

Emma Bath, a young mother in the process of starting a business called Demi Kicks producing a line of illustrated trainers and one of the seven young entrepreneurs attending the workshop, said: "I found meeting Ben and established entrepreneur Julie really inspirational. It’s comforting to hear about Ben juggling his career with his family and the struggles everyone faces with the work/life balance."

The group were given the chance to ask questions and took away lots of practical advice and inspiration from the day, which was organised as part of the 30th Birthday of the Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme.

Michael Chambers, who has started Sweettooth, a Caribbean catering company, with the support of the Trust, said: "I never planned to be an entrepreneur but my circumstances and my passion for food led me to this opportunity. The Prince’s Trust, and meeting Ben, Julie and Nick today, have helped me realise there will always be highs and lows in business, but to keep going."

Howe was able to share practical advice on issues ranging from test trading to the benefits of mobile apps.

He said: "It is always a pleasure to work with groups of young entrepreneurs as we are able to add our experience and information to their passion and self motivation to hopefully ensure that their business idea has the best possible chance of succeeding."

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