How to combat loneliness as an entrepreneur

What words do you associate with entrepreneurs and founders?

Ambition?
Passion?
Optimism?
Energy?

Lonely?

Perhaps not the latter. And yet…

At the outset, most entrepreneurs act alone. They have an idea, they research it, develop it, make it happen – on their own.

They are self-reliant – they have to be. In the early days there is often no budget to build a team, there may not be a co-founder to share ideas with, or to moot the relative benefits of this strategic option over another. Entrepreneurs have to trust their own judgement.

Even when the business is able to support a team, founders have to keep a distance between themselves and the team some of the time. There are some things you just can’t share with the team – especially if the thing that is worrying you is “how do I pay the next monthly salary run?”

And yet, as the saying goes, “a problem shared is a problem halved”.

So what’s a founder to do?

There are practical things you can do to combat loneliness:

  • Using co-working spaces can be a good way of ensuring you have people around to talk to.
  • Making time for networking also makes sure you are meeting new people with different perspectives, but beware people’s natural inclination to present a positive picture of themselves which may mean you feel you can’t be as open as you’d like to be in certain circumstances.
  • Working with a coach or mentor can provide an environment for discussing more sensitive, and potentially challenging, situations – but it can become expensive.


Or you could join an online Entrepreneur Board – an intimate group of entrepreneurs whose businesses are at a similar stage to yours, people who get to know you over time, building trust, rapport and understanding of each other’s businesses. It makes for a powerful support option. Not only does it combat loneliness but it is designed to facilitate problem solving, offer support in responding to challenges and in exploring strategic options. You become part of a community, surrounded by experience.

You are not alone, afterall.

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Find out more about Entrepreneur Boards

Crowdfunding isn’t just about the money…three founders share why they chose to crowdfund

There is no doubt that crowdfunding is a good way to raise investment. What’s interesting is that the reasons people are choosing to crowdfunding are changing. Of course the investment raised is nice – but it isn’t the only reason for undertaking crowdfunding. Below, three different founders share why they choose to do crowdfunding:

“Crowdfunding proved a brilliant way to market test a new product and boost sales.” 

Kellie Forbes and Gill Hayward, Co-Founders of YUU World, who have successfully raised two rounds of equity investment, decided to do reward-based crowdfunding to test demand for a new product. They noticed that “wearable tech” products did particularly well on reward-based crowdfunding platforms and they decided to include crowdfunding as a key plank in their marketing strategy. It wasn’t the easy ride they’d hoped but had some surprising results…Read more

“Crowdfunding enabled us to turn a shared vision into a tangible financial commitment.”

Robert Woodford, Marketing Director at Deep Time Walk, turned a shared ethos and vision for the world held by the alumni of Schumacher College to raise funds to create not only a mobile app that takes you on a detailed and dramatised walk through the earth’s history, but also funded educational burseries in the process…Read more

“I loved the idea of having 100+ brand advocates who are emotionally and financially invested in our product.”

Peter Ramsey, Founder of Movem, wanted to put down a marker in his industry by not only raising investment but also establishing brand advocates in the process…Read more

All three founders faced challenges along the way – no one ever said crowdfunding would be easy – and they have been generous in sharing their experience and advice so that you can learn from it.

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If you are considering doing crowdfunding Crowdfunding Accelerator, an eight week online programme, makes it quicker and easier to prepare for crowdfunding, focusing your attention on the things that really matter. Find out more about Crowdfunding Accelerator

 

Online Masterclass: Create an Executive Summary that attracts investors

The online masterclass, “Create an Executive Summary that attracts investors” gives you everything you need to create an Executive Summary for business angels or crowdfunding investors that really sells your investment opportunity. During the 90 minute online masterclass, developed with input and feedback from active investors, you will:

  • Learn to use the 7 Essentials of a successful pitch to structure your Exec Summary
  • Do a practical exercises to describe your business in one succinct sentence
  • Receive a ready-to-use Exec Summary template which investors love
  • Develop a series of “proof points” that show investors you have traction
  • Discover the three most important things to include in your Exec Summary
  • Receive a supporting workbook, additional resources and proven tips

In addition to the the 90 minute online masterclass, if you submit your draft Executive Summary (using the template provided in the Masterclass) the course leader, Hatty Fawcett, will conduct a review of this and provide detailed feedback and suggestions for improvement, giving you additional confidence that you have an Exec Summary that will attract investors.

Places are limited to ensure a good interactive experience.

As the meeting is online, there is no travel time to the meeting, simply log onto the meeting from your computer wherever you are. Come ready to participate fully!

***** Book your place here *****

About Hatty

Hatty Fawcett raised £250,000 through crowdfunding and angel investment for her own business venture. She learnt the hard way what it takes to raise investment and is now on a mission to make it quicker and easier for other businesses to access finance through these routes.

Hatty runs Focused for Business and has helped many start-ups and small businesses become “investor ready” and raise investment. She regularly speaks on crowdfunding and is an active blogger on the subject of raising investment.

Hatty is also a Regional Manager for Angels Den, the Business Angel Network and crowdfunding platform and is a Talent Spotter for The Start-up Funding Club. She runs free, monthly Funding Clinics giving businesses the opportunity to discuss their funding requirements in an informal clinic and to receive tailored advice.

What people say about Hatty

“Hatty is a great teacher! The rich content of the course kept me interested and helped me. This course has given me confidence.” Sue Frost, Co-founder Curamicus

“Hatty was a fantastic coach helping us create a short pitch, ensuring the delivery of key investor information in a simple but effective way” Gill Hayward, Co-Founder, YUU World

“Hatty made the daunting process of accelerating my business a simple, outlined and structured process. As a company we have gained direction, professionalism and valuable information through her insights”. Arun Thangavel, Co-Founder, Hollabox

Book your place on the next masterclass

Book you place here

Crowdfunding Accelerator graduates raise almost £400K of investment

Crowdfunding Accelerator is a year old (as at July 2017) and our graduates have raised almost £400K of investment for their businesses during that time. Proof, if you like that Crowdfunding Accelerator increases your chances of raising investment. Congratulations to all our graduates.

Crowdfunding Accelerator, an eight week online programme, makes it quicker and easier to prepare for crowdfunding, focusing your attention on the things that really matter.

Find out more about Crowdfunding Accelerator

 

New crowdfunding regulation could make it harder to get accepted onto a crowdfunding platform

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) which regulates both peer-to-peer lenders and equity crowdfunding platforms has announced that it plans to introduce more regulation to protect potential investors and help them understand the risks of investing via crowdfunding.

Areas likely to come under scrutiny include:

  • more prescriptive requirements on the content and timing of disclosures
  • better management of conflicts of interest
  • improved standards of due diligence and
  • enhanced client assessment rules.

These changes could lead to new eligibility requirements for companies wishing to crowdfund and greater scrutiny of their businesses plans and forecasts, making it harder for businesses to be accepted onto equity crowdfunding platforms. It is also possible that crowdfunding pitches will require greater validation in order that risks can be more accurately assessed and reported.

Read the FCA’s an assessment of new rules for crowdfunding

Want help with your crowdfunding application and campaign? Learn how Crowdfunding Accelerator makes successful crowdfunding quicker and easier