Scaling with impact

What my clients say about CEO coaching

Read on for first-hand insights into what CEO coaching could look like for you, and the impact it will have on your leadership, legacy, and company valuation.

Mark is a gifted individual. He brings experience, perspective and humanity to every conversation. A brilliant listener Mark will help you find your own path and purpose, and give you practical tools and tips to make management and life even more rewarding.

Luke Kennedy

Founder & CEO, Fable Data

The time I spend with Mark is invaluable and energising. He is helping me become the leader I want to be, to look at challenges from different perspectives and to think more strategically.  He is helping me develop this strategic muscle and to help me help my team become the best they can become. He is very insightful and also extremely knowledgeable and experienced in coaching/business methodologies and frameworks. As he is talking to Founder CEOs all the time and understands the journey so well, having Mark as a coach is like having multiple other Founder CEOs to talk to at the same time.

Alex Preece

Co-Founder & CEO, Tillo

My time spent working with Mark has been a valuable investment. When it comes to the challenges faced by leading a start-up, as a successful entrepreneur and investor himself, Mark simply “gets it”. He is a great listener and thoughtful strategist and creates a trusted space to explore key challenges. Through patience and persistence, he skilfully helps you find your own answers. And they are the answers that you need to create sustainable and fundamental change, rather than the answers that you initially think you need! He has helped me with my personal and professional development. Mark is a fantastic coach.

Paul Christensen

Co-Founder & CEO, Previse

Mark brings rare expertise as an investor and business leader. His sharp strategic insight, management acumen, and probing approach have been invaluable across four critical areas for me. Strategic planning: Mark has been instrumental in guiding me to se ambitious yet achievable growth plans. He has helped develop a sense of focus on a few key value creation opportunities. Organisational Design: He has helped me design a future org. structure which allow us to be the business it needs to deliver our growth plan.  Leadership & Management: Mark has coached me on improving self-awarenss and effectiveness amid rapid growth and change. 

Sam Smith

Founder & CEO, PepTalks

I had the privilege of working with Mark as my CEO leadership coach, during 2023 and the experience was transformational. Mark possesses a deep understanding of leadership dynamics and a remarkable ability to guide and inspire. Through our coaching sessions, I gained valuable insights into my leadership style and developed a more strategic and effective approach which benefitted my colleagues and investors.

Andrew Jenkins

General Partner, Conviction VC

The last year of coaching has been extremely valuable which I attribute to a number of factors driven by Mark.  His awareness and skill of honing in on what is critical to work through ensures we make the most of our time. The quality and breadth of thinking that Mark has are enhanced further by the depth of resources shared by him. Mark’s acknowledgement, ease and drive to adapt the coaching to what will work for me and my style are also important. Mark is now an invaluable asset and friend. I highly recommend him to other business owners looking to scale, as well as to CEOs and Exec leaders. 

Jon Yates

Co-CEO, Matrix

Mark is a Swiss-army knife of guidance, supporting & empowering me to achieve both personal growth and professional outcomes.

He has constructively challenged and reshaped my assumptions about myself, my working environment and my role, all for the better.

Mark works effortlessly at a number of different layers, from the very high level and strategic through to practical challenges around leadership and commercial growth, and the nitty-gritty of specific situations and relationships.

Tom Quick

Founder & CEO, Percept and Entity X

Mark has given me the time to focus on the issues that matter to me as a leader. The goals I originally set now seem outdated. His ability to hold a non-judgemental safe space has given me the pause I’ve needed to navigate my role. He’s enabled me to understand my strengths and provided a structure to explore my weaknesses. I’m grateful for the time we’ve spent together and feel more confident in my decision making as a result.

Tammy Parlour MBE

CEO & Co-founder, Women's Sports Trust

I wanted to take a moment to express my profound gratitude for the transformative coaching you’ve provided me during our collaboration. I am writing this note to share my admiration for your professional expertise and unique perspective, which have proven invaluable to both my personal development and the growth of my business.

 Your coaching approach, combining your venture capitalist experience with the nurturing perspective of a Founder CEO Coach, has had a significant impact on my leadership style.

Through your coaching, you’ve offered me a safe space to openly share my fears, weaknesses, and ambitions, free from judgement. The ability to step back from the day-to-day, to reflect and strategise, has been enlightening. Your guidance has also improved my self-awareness, helping me to cultivate the necessary skills and behaviours to steer my company effectively into the future.

What I appreciate most is that your coaching has never felt self-serving. Instead, it has been a dedication to my team, my business, and to my personal growth.

In short, your service has been a key catalyst for change, and for this, I am incredibly grateful. I wholeheartedly believe that no scale-up CEO should go it alone, and with a coach like you, they never have to.

Thank you for your continuous support and commitment to my professional journey.

Yash Dubal

Director, A Y & J Solicitors

CCEP Ventures worked with Mark and Fit to Lead for an assessment of the founders and leadership team of a potential investment target.

Using their combined experience and expertise of VC, HR and Coaching Mark and Fit to Lead were able to curate a methodology which gave us the insights on the leadership team to make fully informed decisions.

The objective was to assess if the leadership team was ready or had the capabilities to scale with the company; and if not, how that could be achieved with a follow-up coaching programme.

The leadership team evaluation was a combination of external assessments (3x Hogan), 360 degrees feedback, a team questionnaire and individual interviews. I believe this provided very insightful findings from multiple points-of-view on the key strengths and areas for development of the team.

Further, Mark and Debbie worked very efficiently and managed the assignment under a tight planning. Personally, I also liked the open and frequent quick updates on progress or issues to ensure a smooth process.

The final report and presentation of results was very clear and to-the-point. This facilitated sharing the headline findings in a wider group for alignment on next steps.

CCEP Ventures looks forward to work again with Mark and Fit-to-Lead and I recommend them to anyone who needs thorough assessment of leadership teams.

Matthijs Kostelijk

Investment Director, CCEP Ventures

Trade Ledger engaged the services of Fit To Lead / Make Happy in 2021 to support the development and rollout of our strategy for the business to 2024. This included scoping the work to be done, receiving input from all staff in the organisation, and engaging with the leadership in advance of a 2 day strategy session/workshop. Make Fit To Lead / Make Happy facilitated the successful sessions that covered discussions around priorities, targets, timelines, and agreed outcomes and communication.

At all times, Jonathan and Mark were fully engaged in the process: a process that was designed by them and provided a framework for Trade Ledger to successfully conclude this important piece of work.

We would have no hesitation in engaging Fit To Lead / Make Happy again, and in recommending them to other institutions looking for support in running important workshops for their business.

Alan Beattie

President, APAC, Trade Ledger

I have been fortunate enough to play major roles in multiple ventures that scale quickly. Working with a coach like Mark has been enormously helpful throughout this roller coaster journey – he is empathic and enables me to find balance on critical topics that I face on a daily basis. I enjoy the openness of our sessions where he will challenge me to think about a topic more deeply or approach in a different way. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to my armoury as well as a mix of theory and practice that he shares. If you’re interested in becoming a better CEO I would recommend working with Mark

Luke Grob

CEO, Skrmiish