At the beginning of this year I challenged myself to dedicate 2014 to investing in and growing two start- ups a week. This task I have set myself may be well under way, but for the aspiring Entrepreneurs I am investing in the journey is just beginning.
Deciding to start your own business is not for the faint hearted. The hard work that goes into creating and developing a business should never be under estimated. I personally find the start-up phase an exciting (albeit sometimes frustrating) challenge, but hey if it were easy wouldn’t everyone be doing it?!
Now that some of the companies that I have invested in are well underway developing and creating their business propositions to get them ready for market, I have been fascinated to see how different people react and respond to the task that lays ahead of them. I have always been of the belief that anyone can have a good idea but it is the way the idea is implemented and the passion of the entrepreneur that drives the project that is essential to its success or demise.
It has surprised me how it’s actually the older more experienced individuals who have spent the majority of their working life working 9 to 5 for big corporations or other people that have the most drive and energy when they are given the opportunity to pursue what they have dreamed of doing their whole life, which is starting up their own business. As well as providing financial help to our start-ups we also provide them with mentors who have experience in their fields. All Entrepreneurs inevitably need support, direction and advice, which is where our mentors prove how essential they are, as their past experiences and knowledge is invaluable to a growing business.
We are halfway there and I may be behind my aim that I set for the number of businesses we wanted to invest in, but as with any start-up this is to be expected especially as my target was so ambitious. As with any start up or new venture progress is slow in the initial stages. But by learning and by implementing the foundations we have now put in place we hope to increase our numbers of investments throughout the second half of the year.