Sutton Chamber Blog

Sutton Chamber Blog contains articles and updates on local business in the London Borough of Sutton

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Recent blog posts

Business Rate Relief

Posted by on in Sutton News

Business Rate Relief Scheme Launch - Opportunity Sutton launches a leading Local Business Rate Relief Scheme – up to 50% off business rates available.

Click HERE for full information

The Local Business Rate Relief Scheme aims to minimise vacant property rates in Sutton High Street by removing a significant financial barrier to enterprise. The 50% discount aims to attract businesses into Sutton town centre and support start ups and existing businesses to grow.

The Local Business Rate Relief Scheme is offered to all eligible businesses for a maximum of 12 months for applications received between 1 April 2014 and 31 March 2015 at a maximum amount of 50% of net liability.

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Starting a business in Sutton

Posted by on in Business Advice

Enterprising Sutton is a programme of support for business in Sutton and as a part of that initiative Sutton Chamber is working with Branduin Business Support to deliver Start-up Sutton. This programme includes a series of workshops, one to one clinics and ongoing support via phone and email to meet the needs of businesses starting up in the borough.

Start-up Sutton offers you:

  • ·         Business clinics on a one-to-one basis to discuss your ideas confidentially with a business professional
  • ·         Half day workshops, covering the critical must do items for any new business
  • ·         Telephone and email support from specialist advisors
  • ·         Advice on marketing your business and using social media
  • ·         Business funding advice
  • ·         Introductions to government funded coaching programmes for your business
  • ·         Access to a range of business networking opportunities

Start-up Sutton will give you the support and advice you require to take your business from concept to reality. To find out more or sign up visit the web site email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call us on 0208 642 9661.


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Speed Networking into 2014

Posted by on in Sutton Chamber Events

To welcome in 2014 Sutton business owners and managers (maximum 85) are invited to join members and guests of Sutton Chamber at the Holiday Inn for Speed Networking after a full English breakfast.

Earlybird registration is just £10 and full details can be seen under ‘Events’ at Breakfast is at 7.30am after which everyone will find a partner for the 1-2-1 speed networking, changing partners every 4 minutes until 9.30 or later if attendees wish to continue.

Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Phone: 020 8642 9661

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Nick Clegg visits Sutton

Posted by on in Sutton News

Nick Clegg visits Sutton business to talk about apprentices, airport expansion and Boris Johnson

Click HERE for details


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Boris Johnson visits Sutton

Posted by on in Sutton News


Boris Johnson visits Sutton and talks police, Clegg and trams


Click HERE for details


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The Old Gasworks

Posted by on in Sutton News

Sutton town centre gateway project the Old Gasworks given go-ahead.  Click HERE for details

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Business Support in Sutton

Posted by on in Sutton News

Many businesses want sound, impartial business advice but are unsure who to turn to.

Sutton Chamber has teamed up with Branduin Business Support to offer a quality-assured service which provides local access to high-quality, professional business advice and support.

Our experienced business advisors and specialists simply set out to find out what you (or your company’s board) want to do with your business and then help you to do it. There is no ‘off-the-shelf’ solution from the team – it is always made-to-measure and based on an extensive analysis of the needs of your company.

We will help you:

  • Improve your productivity to become more efficient
  • Find new ways of generating more sales
  • Make a big difference to your bottom line

Achieving Your Goals

We will work with your business to identify your business goals, through our proprietary Goal Mapping and Achievement Programme (GMapTM). You will receive a report and a ‘road map’ that will get your business to where you want it to be. (free to Chamber members, non-members: £250)

Business Clinics

Pre-book your 1 hour slot for advice on any business issue you are currently grappling with. To book a place, call 020 8642 9661 or go to (members £25, others £75)

Access to Funds & Grants

We can help with access to Government grants, angel funders, lenders, advice on tax credits and make introductions to new business partners.

Quality Assured Specialists

Whatever your business need, we can introduce you to a quality assured provider of any service you require. Additionally, we provide a project-management service to see your project through from start to finish. Our specialists are all experts in their chosen field:

  • Business strategy & growth
  • Personal business support: from MD support to succession planning
  • Sales: from open to close
  • Marketing: strategy & implementation
  • Online presence: from websites to soc
  • Financial performance & risk
  • Benchmarking
  • People: the law, training & development
  • Compliance
  • IT, telecoms, facilities and utilities

So please check out our new offer and let us know what else we can add to this service.

Tagged in: Sutton News
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10 Top Business Networking Tips

Posted by on in Sutton News


We all spend a good amount of time at business networking events and we have put together 10 top business networking tips to help you get the most out of your investment in time.

Ensure you go armed with sufficient business cards, brochures and wear a name badge

  • Set a goal for the number of people to meet and collect contact details
  • Act like a host. Offer to Meet and Greet, help newcomers or those who look uncomfortable
  • When meeting people, listen and ask questions, talk briefly about yourself
  • Don’t try and sell
  • Develop relationships
  • Give referrals
  • Givers gain much more
  • Carefully manage the time you spend with each person to ensure you hit your goal.
  • Write relevant notes on business cards to refer back to later
  • ALWAYS follow up each introduction with an email or phone call.
  • Try and meet over coffee to learn more about each other

Why not try these tips out at our next Sutton Chamber Networking Event and let us know how you get on with it.

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7 top tips to get started with LinkedIn

Posted by on in Business Advice

When people ask me about how to get things moving on LinkedIn and I look at their profile it is usually obvious that they have not got the basics right. So here are 7 top tips to get started with your LinkedIn profile 

  1. Complete your profile to 100% and add a good quality professional picture make sure you use the description that is relevant to your business goals. Include keywords in your pitch so that you will be found when people search for experts in your area.
  2. Solicit previous customers for recommendations – focus on quality over quantity. Aim for those customers who have clout in the industries you focus on. Where possible, guide them on the areas you’d like recommendations on.
  3. Join the key groups in your sector and get a digest of new activity – then, once you’ve listened for a while, look to see how you can join the conversation with helpful comments and links.
  4. Follow companies on your prospect list so you get regular updates – pay particular attention to joiners, leavers and company announcements.
  5. Connect to as many people as you can – contacts breed contacts. Make use of LinkedIn’s ‘people you may know’ feature. And always send a contact request within 24 hours of meeting anyone new.
  6. Connect LinkedIn to your Twitter feed and make sure you show a link to your company website.
  7. Check your contacts’ contacts for other people you can connect to – do this religiously for all new connections.

Try to invest a little time on a regular basis to keep up with what is going on and make sure you join in the conversation.

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Time saving tips for dealing with email

Posted by on in Business Advice

Finding more hours in the day is at the top of every busy business person's wish list. But what if finding more time was just a matter of rethinking your routine? Here are a couple of easy things you can do to reduce wasted time when dealing with your email

Do not check your email so often

Thanks to computers, laptops, smartphones and free WiFi, most of us are guilty of being too in-touch. A lot of people look back at their day and say, "Gosh, where did my time go?" And the answer is that a lot of their time went to checking email and getting side tracked. It seems obvious to try to peek at your inbox less frequently, but for many of us, the temptation is too great. If you use a program like Outlook at work, instead of having your inbox refresh every minute, switch your settings so it pulls in new emails every half hour or hour. That way you’ll score more uninterrupted work time because you won’t be tempted by incoming messages. Also minimise Outlook when not actually dealing with your mail.

When you read messages deal with them right away

How many times have you opened up an email and closed it over and over again because you can't decide how to respond to it? Each time you do that, it takes about one minute to process the information in the message. So if you do that 10 times, you have just lost 10 minutes. Instead, each time you open a message, decide right then and there what action you plan to take. If replying to an email will take less than two minutes, it’s important to tackle it immediately. You won’t save any time if you come back to it later––you’ll just waste time by opening and mentally processing the message again. For messages that require more thought or work, make an email "action" folder to drag them into so that they won’t get buried and forgotten about in your inbox. 

A few simple ideas like this can save you time throughout the day. Let us know other email time saving ideas that we can share.

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4 top tips for more successful Networking

Posted by on in Business Advice

Building relationships can be the key to boosting your company’s success to a new level. A strong networking strategy can maximize the value of your relationships and lead to new opportunities.

Networking events are not about going and getting 30 business cards and putting them in your database. You should be strategic about your networking, aim to form lasting relationships, find out how you can help others achieve their goals, don’t just try to make a sale. 

Here are some key points to having a successful networking experience:

Form a strategy: Think ahead about your strategy before attending a networking event. If it is group networking, identify your target audience and determine how many people you would like to meet. Find out if there are any attendees you’d like to meet and identify people you know who could make an introduction. Aim to meet one to three people at an event that you will follow up with is a good goal, or possibly more, depending on the event and your personal business goals.

Build relationships: Use the networking event to try to get to know other people and understand if they are a good contact for you. Establish a relationship and ask permission to set up a follow-up appointment. Be sure that you have a strong and succinct USP (unique selling proposition). When someone asks, ‘What do you do?’ keep your answer brief and to the point and then ask them questions. Go to networking events to build relationships not to sell. Find a way to follow up with them, offer a white paper you have written if you think they would be interested.

Listen: One of the most important things you can do while networking is to listen to the other person. “That’s the biggest gift you can give someone, to listen to them.  Some people think networking events are sales situations and they really are not, they are about building relationships. If people would see that it’s more about listening to the other person rather than worrying about themselves so much, they would see opportunities to help each other. When you’re networking, sometimes the people you meet become your clients and sometimes they become links to other people. The more you take the time to understand how you can help somebody else, the more they’re going to want to help you as well.

Help Others: Try to be genuinely interested in helping others when attending a networking event this will present more opportunities for you. Try to clear your mind before you go in there and tell yourself that you are there to help other people, not to serve yourself. Everything that happens in your business is related to your mindset. If you go in with the idea that you’re out there to meet people, listen to them, learn about them and figure out whom to follow up with, it will serve you well.

Tagged in: Networking
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Sutton Community Leadership Awards 2013

Posted by on in Sutton News

Sutton Chamber is supporting Sutton Council in this Community Leadership Awards program. Closing date is 28th January 2013.


Who inspires you? To nominate your local hero for a Community Leadership Award CLICK HERE.  - it only takes a few minutes.

Otherwise go to


The annual awards are your chance to make sure anyone you feel makes a difference to Sutton and its residents is recognised. It could be the dedicated volunteer, the motivational coach, or the hardworking colleague. The winners will each receive a £100 prize and awards will be presented at a ceremony in Feb 2013.


Help us spread the word - ask your friends and colleagues to start nominating!


Debbie Bacon

Marketing Communications Manager

Corporate Communications Team

Chief Executive's Group

London Borough of Sutton

Civic Offices

St. Nicholas Way, Sutton SM1 1EA


Tagged in: Sutton News
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