Trophy Blog #88 – A few weeks ago I attended a workshop set up by Business Support York & North Yorkshire (BSYNY) and Selby district council. They are working together in the Selby area to help businesses and owners. I have been asked to attend many groups and meetings in the past, but they have all been either at the wrong time, or took up too much of the working day. This one was nice and easy, two hours in the morning and straight back to work. This workshop focused on the online business directory LinkedIn. This is used by professionals trying to reach out to other professionals. Before the workshop, I knew I had an account set up which had a few connections, but I didn’t really do much with it. I have heard stories in the past of corporations offering big money to take control of a LinkedIn group. The hard work has already been done for them, so they pass it on to their marketing departments and they advertise their services and products to the exact people who will use them. Around 30 people attended the workshop held in the chamber room at the council. We started by going straight back to basics. We had Questions answered such as: How do you build an effective profile that LinkedIn will approve and people will be able to find easily? Information on editing your profile to get best search results, and What are LinkedIn groups and how can you benefit? Straight after the workshop I spent an hour or so changing my own account and it has quickly been spotted by a few people, so it was worthwhile attending. Look out for future workshops on other useful subjects. 
  Trophy Blog #72 ~ The future of our local power stations have been in the news recently. The three power stations close by are some of our areas biggest employers. I’m sure nearly every reader of this column will have a friend or relative connected somehow to the local power industry. Selby was once a big mining town with thousands of jobs. New villages we’re created or extended when the new coalfield was created over 30 year ago. The Selby to York east coast main line was diverted away from the town because of it. Drax, Eggborough and Ferrybridge power stations all had the 24/7 merry-go-round trains bringing in millions of tons of coal from the local area. My family moved up to Yorkshire from Kent when I was 11 years old when North Selby mine opened, We settled in Brayton and will personally never move back to Kent. Sadly the mines have now all gone. The positive news is that Drax has had millions and millions of pounds invested in it recently to change over to burning Bio Mass. Hopefully Eggborough power station will have the same investment from the government, private or overseas investors. Sadly, it seams that if the vital investment doesn’t arrive, then the site will close. This can not happen as so many jobs and families are involved. So many local businesses are connected to the ‘food chain’ in some way or another. I know the local ‘powers that be’ are working behind the scenes to secure its future. It’s survival is so important for the town and local area and I hope we hear some positive news about it’s future very soon.
Trophy Blog #63 – In July 2013, LRB Trophies won a ‘retweet’ from Theo Paphitis via his twitter account. The Small Business Sunday competition, shortened to the hashtag, #SBS on Twitter, was created by Theo Paphitis in October 2010. Theo is famous as a former Dragon on the BBC Dragons Den programme. He is Chairman of highstreet retailers Ryman Stationery, Robert Dyas, Boux Avenue and owns 50% of Red Letter Days alongside another Dragon, Peter Jones. He also has various investments via the Dragons Den series. He was once the chairman of Millwall FC. Each week Theo rewards small businesses that tweet him via @TheoPaphitis and describe their business in 140 letters including the all-important hashtag #SBS. The tweets to @TheoPaphitis #SBS are reviewed and each week by Theo and he chooses his favourite lucky six. He has over a three hundred thousand followers to showcase the winning tweet. LRB Trophies owner Steve Butler meat Theo in person in November 2013 (see other news stories). – The introduction video below was created by another #SBS winner and came about via networking with the other #SBS Winners.