Advising and preparing a business owner for exit

Roger Proctor founded marketing agency Proctor and Stevenson in 1979 as a graphic design house. In the 80’s they evolved into brand corporate communications, focusing on print design. At the end of the 80’s, Roger became more interested in direct marketing, and through the 90’s he started to build up a digital team and develop his own software. From here the company grew. They were involved in design for print, product launches, exhibitions, websites, and email campaigns, and built an international client base drawn from diverse sectors such as technology and financial services.


After more than 40 years of leading the firm, Roger was starting to think about his exit, but needed to think through how to achieve it. Proctor and Stevenson had become more purpose and social impact led, and he wanted to make sure that the business had longevity built into it. A trade sale didn’t feel right.

Roger recognised he needed guidance to separate himself from the business, as well as the confidence to step away and pass his responsibilities to someone else. This meant reassurance that the senior leadership team felt personally equipped and had the knowledge and skills for the future.

It was hgkc’s combination of client and people focus, knowledge and expertise that helped Roger decide we were the right fit for him. We took the time to understand what he wanted and how it would fit in with his life in the future.


We started by getting involved with the senior leadership team (SLT) to help them to understand their key strengths, prospective roles and motivations. Roger was aware that this may not be a certain outcome for everyone.

hgkc introduced DiSC behavioural insights, which Roger found particularly useful. DiSC helps confirm what people already know about themselves, but it also helped the SLT to understand each other: they were better able to recognise each other’s preferences, strengths and natural skills.

hgkc also introduced Engagement Multiplier. To begin with, Roger was apprehensive about the results, assuming anonymity would encourage negative feedback, but the first benchmark engagement report was one the highest first session scores hgkc had seen, which was a great confidence boost. The report highlighted the priority areas and helped to develop an action plan to target their efforts. Giving all employees a voice to express themselves was a positive experience for everyone.

Peter also helped Roger to map out his personal exit plan using Outcomes Mapping, a tool favoured by hgkc. For Roger, this was as much an emotional map as well as a list of things he needed to do. It helped him identify what was important, and what his non negotiables were.


Roger described hgkc as an enabler who helped to make the process clear and ultimately made it happen as they also stopped him from procrastinating about his exit.

A management buyout was completed in July 2023. Roger was delighted with the outcome and said that although it was very difficult for him, choosing to leave the business that had been his life for more than 40 years, what was important was that the business carried on after he exited.

Our approach is always to tailor the support we provide to meet the needs of clients. Whether providing a valued external opinion, taking a more practical role to define the strategy, or help to build upon the skills, knowledge and experience of the team, we have been on hand as much or as little as required.

So, whether your company seeks business continuity and growth, intends to pivot towards new markets, or needs to be able to deal with a period of unprecedented change, our team of experts is here to support your journey, every step of the way.

hgkc was born from the realisation that together our combined practical experience and knowledge can offer our clients a broader, deeper and richer experience that will deliver better results faster.