Ten Minutes with Matthew Dashper-Hughes

CATEGORY: Blog Posts

DATE: Feb 16, 2022
AUTHOR: Tamsin Parker

In our, ‘Ten Minutes With,’ series of interviews we speak to different business owners about how they got to where they are, all about their careers and a little bit about themselves.

This time we’re talking to Matthew Dashper-Hughes from Sandler Training. Matthew has vast experience in the business world, loves walking but hates school! Here he tells us about the tough targets he sets for himself and why self-help books are a must.

What five words would you use to describe yourself?

  • Curious
  • Vulnerable
  • Open
  • Helpful
  • Kind

Tell us about yourself.

I’m happily married, am in my late 40’s and live in South Cheshire. I have one grown up child and think I am still working out what I want to do when I grow up. I love walking and climbing hills and like to think of myself as a bit of a musician by playing the guitar.

How would you describe your business?

Sandler Training is a worldwide full-service professional development and training programme which was founded around 50 years ago in America – although I’m working with clients mainly in Cheshire, Staffordshire and the M6 corridor.

We deliver a whole range of training including sales and leadership, talent acquisition and LinkedIn to companies ranging in size from small, one-person businesses to large multi nationals.

It really works and I can say that from personal experience because I was a client for two years before I joined the company, working with the franchise owner Roy Johnson two and a half years ago.

I wish I’d have known of Sandler in my earlier career – the training would have definitely helped me learn the things I did on the job, much more quickly!

Pre-Covid almost all of our training was delivered face to face – now it’s virtually all delivered on-line. In the last two years we’ve delivered training to more than 2,000 people from over 600 companies – something that Roy and I are very proud of.

Tell us about your career?

Before joining Sandler, I’d had a 20-year career. I’ve worked in business to business, retail and owned my own firm. I’ve led companies through hypergrowth, acquisitions, times of crisis and turned them around. I’ve worked at Board Level and done everything that you would expect, from huge recruitment drives to complete restructures and everything in-between.

What do you love most about your job?

I’m quite evangelical about it really. It’s a real privilege to work with the Sandler system – it’s aligned with my personal values – it’s ethical, builds relationships and really does work. To see the difference our training can make to people’s lives and their businesses is what gets me up in a morning and spurs me on.

Matthew Dashper-Hughes


What are your plans this year?

From a business perspective we want to build on what we’ve already achieved but we’re also looking to recruit – if we can find the right person for our team and business.

Personally – I want to continue to expand my horizons and make sure I read a book a week. Last year I set myself a target of reading 50 personal development books and managed to read 64. This year I’d like to keep that going and include some fiction as well.

Who is your inspiration?

I’ve just read: ‘In the Heat of the Moment,’ which is about being a firefighter written by Dr Sabrina Rachel Cohen-Hatton. She’s a Chief Fire Officer, psychologist and writer and I have to say she and her book is pretty inspirational.

I’d also say Benjamin Franklin – polymath, writer, scientist and inventor who helped draft the Declaration of Independence. He was the original poster boy for living to values and goal setting.

What was your dream job when you were at school?

My dream at school was to leave! I hated it but once I started to do my A-levels, wasn’t told what to do by other people anymore and could think for myself I really started to enjoy learning. I had a couple of fantastic teachers who challenged me and spurred me on to do a degree and a masters.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

Surround yourself with good people – let them do their job.

If you were down to your last £100, what would you spend it on?

I bet you can guess – I’d spend it on books so I could hit that target.

 If you’d like to be one of our, ‘Ten Minutes With,’ interviewees find out more by dropping us a line at hello@legspr.agency

AUTHOR: Tamsin Parker
Tamsin is our Managing Director and the founder of LEGS PR. She is a communications and engagement expert with more than 20 years of journalistic and PR experience in both the public and private sectors. She has worked in newspapers, commercial radio, and regional television where she covered news and sport. Tamsin still freelances as a broadcast journalist as is a lecturer in journalism and sports journalism at Staffordshire University.

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