One of Paul Beare’s earliest ambitions was to become a children’s TV presenter. This might sound unusual for a man operating in the world of corporate services, but only if you’ve never met him. ‘Corporate’ isn’t really a word you would attach to Paul. From his dress sense, to his life philosophy, he is proud to do things differently. And that is why his clients love him.
Paul developed his experience of international accountancy services working for his father’s business. The family firm had been based in Bracknell, near London, since the 1980s, but Paul believed it required a central London marketing office to help grow the client base. He pitched the idea to his father, who agreed it was a good idea. The global financial crisis of 2008 soon put paid to that ambition, but Paul began working at the main office, while living in central London. As his father’s health declined, he began to take on more responsibility, until he became the main force behind the business.
“Eventually, my father decided to sell the business, and I saw it as an ideal opportunity to move on as well “
He says: “Eventually, my father decided to sell the business, and I saw it as an ideal opportunity to move on as well. The business was sold and my father retired. The new owners kept everyone on for a while, until they shut the office and moved the client work overseas. That’s when I started Paul Beare Limited. I was interested in marketing and embraced technology and search engine optimisation. The techniques were in their infancy then, but we were quickly ranking number one for international accountants in London.”
Paul has been immersed in the corporate services sector since he was 15 and is still relatively young to be heading up such a business. His vast experience allows him to act as a trusted advisor to clients, taking care of a range of services, from opening a bank account to setting up a payroll system. He usually becomes the Company Secretary of his clients’ UK business, allowing him to sign legal documentation on their behalf in the absence of a UK-based director.
Paul adds: “We’re often the first port of call and act as a sounding board. I firmly believe that’s why clients will come back to us when they’ve left their current employment and moved on. We recently picked up a large client because we supported the individual concerned five years ago in a former business. They came back because they remembered the work that we did and how we supported them.
“Because of our reputation, I am able to walk into several British Consulates around the world and be recognised for the right reasons. Paul Beare is on a provider list with the British Government for supporting companies coming to the UK.” Running his own business, allows Paul to indulge his love of travel while working. His aversion to the British winter means he often spends three months a year in New Zealand and Australia on business development trips. This all sounds like a perfect lifestyle, but getting to this position hasn’t been easy.
Paul suffers from anxiety, which is linked to his busy corporate schedule. He works hard to monitor his work/life balance to deal with this, moulding his working week to manage stress.
He says: “I have learnt to control it using holistic therapies and lifestyle changes, but it’s been quite a challenge and a hurdle to overcome. There are no guide books for that when you start your own business. I’ve got a wonderful team behind me that totally understands this and are there to support me. They are all specialist people, highly qualified in their own right, whether by qualification or by experience. Sometimes they just have to step in and I step back.”
Paul also carefully manages his lifestyle and diet to minimise the effects of the condition.
“I live in Chiswick, West London, which is a bit more relaxed than Central London, with more green spaces. I also used to be one heck of a coffee addict, but I haven’t touched coffee since Christmas 2018. I miss it terribly, but taking certain steps to sort the anxiety out, meant the coffee had to go.”
One of Paul’s philosophies is to build a strong business that works for him. He cites the ability to decide the next strategic move for his business as a strong motivator to self-employment. He says: “There are plenty of headaches because you must always prioritise a client’s needs, however it also allows me the freedom to travel and live wherever I wish. Whenever I plan a trip I consider whether we have clients, serious potential clients or else a referral source. Only then do I make the trip.” On a personal level, Paul loves to combine culture with travel, often teaming business with pleasure. One of his favourite cities is Boston on the US East Coast, which he prefers to the hustle of New York. The time he spends in New Zealand is also linked to personal reasons, since he has close family out there.
“New Zealand is just a totally different culture than the UK and, of course, the scenery is absolutely stunning.”
He adds: “I love going to Boston and the train ride between New York City and Boston is absolutely beautiful. New Zealand is just a totally different culture than the UK and, of course, the scenery is absolutely stunning. Given half a heartbeat I think I could quite happily live in either location, depending on the time of year.”
As part of his mental health regime, Paul spends time in the gym and also takes Bikram yoga classes. Spending 90 minutes practising yoga in a hot room is an integral part of anxiety management for Paul, allowing him to perform his job more effectively.
Turning potential weaknesses to strengths is key to Paul’s success. Opening up about issues such as mental health has allowed him to engage more effectively with clients and has empowered Paul to create the lifestyle that suits him, while allowing him to deliver on his business goals. Even his flamboyant dress sense, influenced by colour blindness, has become something of a statement and an integral part of the Paul Beare brand.
Paul’s passion for his business, backed by experience and expertise has allowed Paul Beare Limited to grow into a strong, internationally-renowned firm. You’d bank on Paul Beare being a name in the corporate accounting services industry for some time to come, however, if he ever has a change of heart, we think he’d make an excellent children’s TV presenter.