Vaughan Evans & Partners
Vaughan Evans & Partners

Backing U!

A Business-Oriented Guide to Backing Your Passion and Achieving Career Success

Are you satisfied in your job or business? 50% of employees aren’t. If you’re one of them, are you at risk of losing out to those who are satisfied?


Think of yourself as a business, 'U'. Would you back U in your current job? Or would U be more backable if you were in a job or business you felt passionate about?


Backing U! helps you answer these questions. Part I offers fresh insights for assessing how sound your prospects are in your current job. What are the chances of your job being hit by market downturn? Are there too many people with your skills? Do you have what it takes to compete? Is your attitude right? In short, Would you Back U?


If the answer is yes, Part II shows how you can improve your chances of doing well in your job, how to Become More Backable.


Or perhaps it’s time to look elsewhere. But where? Part III starts by finding those jobs that inspire you most. But how attractive really are these jobs? And how well placed would you be in them? Some of your dream jobs may lose their shine. Others will offer promise. Backing U! shows you how to get into and succeed in those most promising jobs or businesses. How to Back the Hwyl in you, the passion, fervour, spirit that can lift youto extremes of success!


Backing U! uses four carefully chosen exemplars throughout the book to illustrate how to deploy the techniques described. Two are employed by companies in Atlanta and Chicago, two are self-employed and run businesses in Boston and London, England. Two choose to remain and develop their careers in their current jobs. Two choose to quit and pursue their passions.


The book also real life examples to further illustrate the techniques – whether assessing the risk profile of backing the Beatles in 1963 or Oprah in 1983; describing the strategy deployed by Madonna throughout her career; or analysing the hypothetical career change options available to Prince Charles today!


The author is well placed to guide you on backing U! For the last thirty five years, he has advised clients on whether they should invest in businesses, large and small. He found that the tools he developed work just as well for the individual. An economist, consultant, corporate financier, small businessman, politician, and speaker, he has reinvented himself on numerous occasions, honing his Backing U! tools in the process. He has worked at investment bankers Bankers Trust and management consultants Arthur D. Little. An economics graduate of Cambridge University and an Alfred P. Sloan fellow of London Business School, he spent the first dozen years of his career living in exotic lands like the West Indies, Borneo, Java, Fiji and Thailand. He hails from West Wales, no less lovely a land, and a cradle of hwyl.


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Praise for this book

What Experts Say About Backing U!

“Inspirational…”, “Terrific…”, “Original…”, “Fresh…”, “Lively…”, “Innovative…”,  ”Motivational…”, “Novel…”, “Engaging…”, “Great…”, “Fantastic…”, “Excellent…”, “Clever…”, “Intelligent…”, “Impressive…”

Backing U! will start your career search with passion, then guide you step by step with rigorous screening tools Vaughan Evans developed during his extensive business experience. You’ll end up with a career option that not only inspires you but gives you every chance of success. This is a terrific, original addition to career guidance books.” – Barbara Sher, career counselor and author of Wishcraft: How to Get What You Really Want and I Could Do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was (

“Uncertain that you’re in the right job or career? Backing U! is a fresh, lively, in-depth guide on how to assess your work situation and shift to work you’ll feel passionate about. What makes it stand out from so many other career books is its business perspective. It guides the reader through original tools and realistic case studies on the route to achieving career happiness and success.” – Julie Jansen, career coach and author of I Don’t Know What I Want, But I Know It’s Not This (

“If you are wondering whether you are in the right job or business, Vaughan Evans’s Backing U! will re-ignite your passion. Rich, detailed examples bring his innovative ideas to life. As you apply his time-tested business tools to your career, you’ll gain insight, clarity, and the motivation to succeed!” – Carol L. McClelland, PhD, green career expert and author of Your Dream Career For Dummies (

“This is a thorough work on achieving career success, full of innovative tools and charts, which I love! Readers will appreciate how they clarify the issues that are key to career development.” – Daniel Porot, career design guru, author of The PIE Method for Career Success and summer workshop co-leader with Richard N. Bolles, author of What Color Is Your Parachute? (


“A novel, engaging and high-energy way of getting the most out of your working life!” – John Lees, career transition and development specialist and author of How To Get A Job You’ll Love (


Backing U! is great, especially for someone like me that loves logical processes. It has some fantastic exercises for helping people to find and land a job with passion, fervor and spirit, what Vaughan Evans calls your hwyl. If you want guidance in shifting to a job you love, this excellent book is for you.” – Catherine Roan, managing director,


Backing U! uses tools developed by the author over many years to assess the viability of small businesses and cleverly adapts these for individuals to assess themselves as if they were a business. Applied to both the employed and self-employed the reader is taken on a detailed and challenging journey to discover whether they should indeed be backing themselves. Vaughan Evans introduces many techniques to help to achieve this, including the wonderful Welsh concept of hwyl – your driving passion – without which the journey could founder. It is clear what his hwyl is and he does an excellent job of conveying that to the rest of us.” – Dr. Barrie Hopson, career counsellor, founder of Lifeskills International and author of Build Your Own Rainbow (

“An innovative approach to getting your career on the right track.” – Nick Williams, personal development coach and author of The Work We Were Born To Do (

“As with business, career change is not a one stop destination, more a continuing evolution. And underpinning success in both is usually fundamental engagement or passion. Backing U!’s very novel approach and tools use exactly this principle, helping you re-inject vision into an existing direction or to find a satisfying new one. Backing U! brings business-like rigour into the career transition process. Some may be put off by the charts, the lists, and the ratings. But for those who relish thorough, disciplined analysis of career options, Vaughan Evans’s intelligent, lucid and lively bookwill be most welcome.” – Sonia Lakshman, career coach and owner of One Smart Step (


“An in-depth read if you want to take a look at your own career possibilities from all angles. The book helps you do the thoughtful work needed to achieve what career success looks like to you. Filled with helpful questions, answers and examples, Vaughan Evans offers sound self-development advice and business perspective. Chapter by chapter, he guides you through a business-focused approach to challenge your thinking so you can develop useful strategies on career growth or change. Backing U! is for anyone committed to finding the highest satisfaction in their work.” - Gayle Lantz, author, Take the Bull by the Horns: The Busy Leader’s Action Guide to Growing Your Business…and Yourself , Founder & President, WorkMatters, Inc. (


“Want a unique business approach to careers and jobs? Then Vaughan Evans’s book, Backing U! is for you! Evans’s novel method is ‘top down instead of bottom up.’ He uses ‘out-of-the-box’ and ‘what if’ scenarios, to enhance the contents of this book. The ‘suns and clouds’ concept charts for evaluating opportunities and uncertainties are also very special!”  – Don Sutariaauthor, Career and Life Counselling from the Heart (Your Career is a Pathway to Your Soul!), Founder, President & Life-Work Coach, CareerQuest (


“Impressive… great concepts.” – Daisy Swan, strategic career planner and coach, California (


“Comprehensive… I will recommend it to clients.” – Lynn Berger, career coach and counselor, New York (


“I love Backing U! LITE! If I were Queen of the World, I would give every one of the unemployed, under-employed and long-term unemployed a copy of the book! Then I’d know that everyone has an equal opportunity to learn basic job search skills and how to look at themselves through employers’ eyes – a perspective all wannabe successful jobseekers need to know. I found myself wanting to create visual storyboards for the four main characters, adding new elements to their stories with each chapter. The book works for linear thinkers and visual ones too. Quite an accomplishment. While the book may be intended for more experienced job hunters, it provides much needed information for university students too – about business practices, how employers evaluate potential employees and increasing individual backability. Backing U! LITE not only points out common challenges for career changers and entrepreneurs, but shows scenarios for overcoming them. Most definitely a win-win book, the kind I like best.” – Carol Christen, career strategist and author with Richard N. Bolles of What Color Is Your Parachute: For Teens, California (


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