How do you start a talent development business and sell it to one of the biggest consulting brands in the world?
Today, we’re speaking with Adrian Moorhouse, Olympic Swimming Champion, and Talent Development business owner.
Adrian started Lane4 ,a UK based Talent Development company in 1996 together with 3 others and grew it to over 130 people.
He started Lane4 as a leadership and management training company. The goals was to grow the business by 200% every four years. Most important of all was to serve 1 million learners.
And I didn’t want to leave my job. I was scared. But then one of my co-founders convinced me to take the leap …Adrian Moorhouse – Founder of Lane4
In July 2021, Lane 4 and its team was acquired by the global professional services giant EY (formerly Ernst & Young). What a story!
Check out Adrian and Lane 4’s story right here!
Listen to the episode now
Adrian Moorhouse imagines Lane 4
“I didn’t want to just be another retired sportsperson,” Adrian says.
Adrian owed much of his success to the sports psychologists who helped him develop a winning mindset. So he set up Lane4 in 1995 to bring this to corporate training.
I think we can do this and you can be the person to make it happen. You guys create it and I’ll sell it…Adrian Moorhouse
I think that Lane 4 began with people believing we could do it when we started our talent development brand. It was really just the four of us to start with.
So two of the other guys were still in well-paid university jobs. That then made up the group of four original founders.
Leaving your job for a startup
And I didn’t want to leave my job. I was scared. But then one of my co-founders convinced me to take the leap.
He told me: “I believe in you. I think we can do this and you can be the person to make it happen. You guys create it and I’ll sell it.”
I’ll give you half the money up front if it’ll help you make the decision to leave all your jobs…
Management Development Program
I had already done a couple of speaking engagements and one of the people I got talking to was the Managing Director of a company called Bourne Leisure Holdings.
He said: “I really like your concept of working alongside Managers. I want to run some Management Development programs and I really like the sporting overlay.
Would you like to pilot a program in some of my leisure parks?
Decision crunch point
Then there came a crunch-point. My co-founders in Lane 4 and I were unsure we could do it.
But our new client said: I believe in you. I’ll give you half the money up front if it’ll help you make the decision to leave all your jobs…
Check out the rest of the episode with Adrian Moorhouse now!
Take-aways you don’t want to miss
- What it’s like to have your training business acquired
- What Lane 4 stands for in the marketplace
- Which kinds of clients Lane 4 works with
- How Adrian got his first paying training clients
- What’s it like to take on your first employees
- Where Lane 4 is going and what’s around the corner