Alumni Daniel Evans

Daniel Evans – Business Management

CEO, Birmingham Enterprise Community

Daniel Evans studied his BA (Hons) Business Management at Newman, graduating in 2019 with the aim of completing his Master’s Degree and setting up his own business.

Not long after graduating, Daniel began following the plan he had envisaged as he went on to study an MSc in Entrepreneurship and whilst studying began to start work on building his own business, Birmingham Enterprise Community, which he had developed the idea about whilst at Newman and built on his work setting up the Newman Enterprise Support Team (NEST) society at Newman.

Daniel commented “I had worked several different jobs before being at Newman but knew that in the long term I wanted to start a business for myself. I used the support of the enterprise team at Newman to begin understanding what steps I needed to take to do this so that I could plan out a path towards it. Whilst setting up NEST at Newman I found that I felt passionately about helping other people who had ideas to set up businesses to be able to find the support that they needed to turn it into something real.”

Daniel began speaking with various people in the Birmingham business community to develop a network of contacts and learn more about what support was on offer to new entrepreneurs. Daniel attended events, workshops and shared ideas with the enterprise team on how support for young entrepreneurs could be expanded, which all acted as great practice and experience for what he was to go on to do.

Daniel plans to remain within this career long-terms and since starting his business with two others, it has grown very quickly. “We have had the pleasure of supporting a lot of emerging entrepreneurs to develop their businesses and have worked with some of the biggest companies in the world such as Gymshark & Uber to deliver opportunities to the community we support. I get to work with a huge range of businesses from different industries including Film & Art, Food & Drink, Aerospace and many more meaning that each day is different and get to meet a lot of interesting people working on exciting projects.”

Daniel and his colleagues have set themselves an aim to become one of the major players in supporting entrepreneurs and start-ups on the international stage.

Daniel’s advice would be “take every opportunity you can and don’t be afraid to take a chance. We sometimes say that there is an element of luck involved in getting the job you want or being picked for an opportunity, which is true but you can increase your luck by putting yourself out there in the right places. Want to know what these right places are? Connect with people doing what it is you want to do and ask them what they did!”

ryan johnson business graduateRyan Johnson

Business and MBA Graduate, Class of 2018 & 2020

 “From the first time I visited Newman I really liked the family feel of the university, whereby every student was made to feel important, and valued. Alternatively, when I had visited much larger universities this unfortunately wasn’t the case, which made me feel that you were one of many, a number more than a person. Whereas at Newman, it really appealed to me that you could form personal connections with lecturers who not only knew your name, but were familiar with you as an individual.

Both the BA, and MBA, captured my interest as they explored a range of business practices that I held interest in. I felt that this would give me an insight into the full 360° nature of how to manage a business, whilst also allowing me to specialise in the topics that I developed a natural flare for.

The staff at Newman were incredibly supportive, and insightful, throughout my entire tenure with the university. They would often go above and beyond to ensure that I achieved the absolute most that I possibly could, and for that I owe them a great deal of gratitude.

For my work experience I worked as content editor, which allowed me to not only develop the theoretical skills that I’d been taught during my degree, but also allowed me to experience a real life workplace for the first time.

During my MBA I commenced on creating my own small enterprise, which I ran throughout the entirety of the qualification, and the years that followed. Whilst pursuing this venture I:

  • Created and maintained, where I engineered a worldwide checkout service, complete with automated postage costs.
  • Designed exclusive items to be included within the product portfolio.
  • Engaged in social media marketing, in order to enhance brand awareness globally.
  • Communicated with a global customer base, in order to secure sales, ensure client satisfaction, and most importantly, generate repeat purchase.
  • Performed trend analyses, inventory valuations, capital budgeting, financial forecasts, and break-even point calculations.
  • Ensured that a 5% donation from each sale reaches charitable causes.

I currently work as Head of Digital for MiGrowth, who are a specialist recruitment business, which utilise their own pre-assessment software to provide hiring managers with job relevant data prior to interview. I moved into this role having run my own ethical clothing company, United Kingdom Straight Edge, for the past three years, where I had shipped products to over fifteen different countries worldwide.

The theoretical understandings developed during my time at Newman gave me the knowledge and understanding of how to perform a range of tasks within a corporate setting. This along with the soft skills taught to me by my lecturers and peers allowed me to quickly adapt to the role I now hold. However, I would say that the most important lesson that I took from my time at Newman is the drive and determination to always keep pushing, and endeavour to achieve the absolute most that I can.

My advice to future Newman students is that the duration of your studies will fly by, so endeavour to get the absolute most out of your experience so that when it’s finalised you can look back with no doubt that you gave it your all. Ultimately, the work you do today will have an impact on your life tomorrow.”

olivia business graduateOlivia Tame

Business Graduate, Class of 2015

“I chose to study Business because I had a large interest in the world of business, how businesses work and how they are expected to survive- what the components are that they had to maintain and focus on in order to be successful, how businesses should treat their people and how their impact on both the market and the environment can contribute towards their success. I chose to study at Newman University because the classes are smaller than a larger university which allows you to obtain 1-2-1 support should you need to. Closer working groups and activities are completed which varies our learning than just being taught by books and power point presentations.

The course exceeded my expectations, it was much more interesting than I had imagined. The tutors were creative with their presenting and their methods of assessment.  All staff at Newman are very friendly, supportive and helpful wherever possible. My tutors were all very friendly and you could have a laugh and a joke with them also. Newman supplied great online learning opportunities, as well as physical learning opportunities and resources via the Library which has thousands of books for a variety of subjects as well as useful links to online libraries and resources.

After graduating from Newman I joined Willmott Dixon Partnerships/ Fortem Solutions Ltd. I joined as a Management Trainee and worked in various sectors of the business to learn about the operations. I graduated my Management trainee programme and become an Assistant Site Manager for Aids and Adaptations for Birmingham City Council working for Fortem. After 2 years in this role I applied to another role as Assistant Build Manager for an Interiors Fit-out company called Willmott Dixon Interiors, where I still remain working on a large office building refurbishment in Brindley Place. With my degree knowledge I have been nominated as Waste and Sustainability Champion for two construction projects for the company that I work for.

Studying my degree helped me learn to manage my time effectively especially when balancing my time between learning and also working. My communication skills improved because you find when you need to ask a question to complete your work you ask it rather than wait for the moment to pass. Your interpersonal skills with others will also improve as you work with a variety of different people- different ages, different religions, backgrounds etc.

My main advice for future Newman students is to enjoy Fresher’s week and make friends. These people might be the ones to help you through the course should you need it. Use your team effectively to study and use all resources available to you including other’s knowledge. Do not be afraid to ask for help. All the tutors are friendly and supportive and are there for you to be successful. It is also important to have some downtime when studying as it can become stressful and heavy. Make sure that you either join a club that you love/ enjoy doing or take up a hobby.”

will business alumniWilliam King

Business and MBA Graduate, Class of 2015 & 2017

“I choose to study Business as I wanted to develop my understanding of the business world and be able to develop a career where I could experience all parts of a fast-paced business. Both the Undergraduate and Master’s courses prepared me for that, focusing on operations, finance, marketing and sales. I chose to study at Newman University because I visited on an open day and enjoyed the taster sessions in the business department. The smaller class sizes and learning environment suited the way I wanted to learn.

Newman is an institution where the staff care about your development and personal wellbeing. I still have contact with many of the staff in the department. It was important for me to feel comfortable and confident when studying and learning the course materials. I am not motivated or inspired by large lecture theatres and hundreds of students. One to one feedback and reflection sessions with the course leaders in the department were vital for my development.

The course exceeded my expectations, it gave me the confidence and skill set I needed to enter a c.£300m revenue business full time and undertake a full time PhD course. I also made many lifelong friends and built connections with academics from many other institutions. My degree has given me the business and communication skills to complete tasks in a timely manner and to a high standard. Smaller class sizes helped with communication, reflection and critical discussions on a variety of challenging topics.

During my time at Newman I completed a 2014 summer internship at The Midcounties Co-operative head office in Warwick, working for the head of Sustainability. This led to me speaking at the annual general meeting (c.500 members) and obtaining a continued consultancy role for a day week during the rest of 2014 & 2015. It gave me a vital insight into the corporate world and how to work with the different departments of the business. It also allowed me to find a business problem and use it as a case study for my third year dissertation project.

After graduation I spent 2 years in Operations at Sadler’s Brewery in Stourbridge, managing warehousing, logistics, delivery of beer to around 300 pubs regionally and a team of 6 drivers and warehousing staff. I also managed the Brewhouse Bar for and retail operations at Merry Hill shopping centre and the NEC. Turned over £160k in revenue from Xmas shopping centre retail sales in 2 years.

I am now working for Halewood International (based in Liverpool and acquired Sadler’s) I am responsible for all National On Trade administration, financial analysis and reporting. I support National Account Managers (NAM’s) with sales analysis and insight, customer queries, financial planning and budgeting, sales forecasting, control of accruals and spend, deal planning and also managing 6 regional accounts in the Midlands.

I am currently completing a full time PhD in consumer behaviour at Coventry University. I am currently entering my final year, looking at energy communities across the UK and how community energy influences energy habits and behaviour. I have recently spoken at the British Academy of Management (BAM) and published a conference paper.

My advice to future Newman students is to make the most of the small class sizes and one to one contact time, look for role models and mentors that have already achieved in the University, spend time in the library and make use of the knowledgeable staff. Most importantly – when leaving, showcase your experience at Newman as a unique selling point and a niche. You will be used to and prepared for a culture that is positive, diverse and challenging.”