ED Reid owns The Alternative Board (TAB) in the York and North Yorkshire region, recognizing that the best advice business owners will ever get is from other business owners.

Since setting it up six years ago, he has worked closely with more than 50 local business owners, helping them get in control of how they spend their time, and growing their sales and profits.

Prior to establishing TAB in York, he built significant commercial and people experience having worked for 15 years in both large corporates and SMEs at executive level. This crossed a number of sectors; from British Steel, to Diageo, Nestle in York, and Simpson Group, the printed point-of-sale specialist, where he was sales and marketing director.

Mr Reid's particular expertise is within sales, marketing, and strategic planning. Having run multi-discipline sales teams of up to 300 people, his understanding of what needs doing, how and by whom, is significant. He has helped turn around a number of companies’ sales strategies by ensuring everyone is focussed on doing the right things.

Having originally graduated in Modern Languages and Business, Mr Reid supplemented his practical knowledge of the workplace with an Executive MBA from Leeds University in 2007. In 2011, he qualified as a Level 5 Coach and Mentor through the Institute of Leadership & Management. He also chairs the North Yorkshire committee for the Institute of Directors.

What job would you like to have other than your own and why?

"Owner-manager of a vineyard; I was lucky enough to sell wine for part of my corporate career, and the satisfaction the best winemakers derive from making great wine that people love, and all from the most natural of products, must be an incredible feeling."

Greatest achievement?

"Balancing being a (hopefully good!) husband and dad to two boys, at the same time as growing a successful business from scratch in York, in a brand new sector, providing services to a tough-to-convince audience of business owners."

What makes you most angry?

"People who make a commitment to do something, then not doing it. If in your heart of hearts you’re not really intending to do it, then don’t make the commitment in the first place. There’s no shame in saying “no” to something at the outset. Just don’t let people down by changing your mind or prioritising something else."

Biggest mistake?

"Saying “no” to a job that was based in the Maldives, selling some of the world’s best alcohol brands around a territory that was simply classified as “Indian Ocean”. I think I must have been mad. But we’d just had our first child, and it felt like too big a leap at the time. Anyhow, I’m sure York on a crisp autumn morning is still probably nicer…"

What do you need to make life complete?

"That vineyard."

Why do you make a difference?

"I know that I genuinely help many of York’s business owners achieve more, for themselves and their businesses – it’s a great feeling."


"None of us is as smart as all of us (with a hat tip to Ken Blanchard for the quote)"