Running a successful business is as much of a thought process as it is the actual work. I chat with Glenn O’Grady, the Co-Chairman of Guidesmiths.com about growing to become a multi-million pound business and understanding how successful business people think.
Glenn and his business partner Felipe have built up www.guidesmiths.com to be a software development company that counts household names amongst it’s clients. Having started the business in 2014 and seen rapid growth Glenn is in an ideal position to offer advice to you on how to run your business.
I have transcribed (adjusted for ease of reading) a couple of the questions I asked Glenn below. You will also find the chapter markers for you to jump to relevant sections. Please watch on YouTube, like and subscribe.
What problems do you find in small businesses? What barriers are they putting up themselves, affecting their potential growth.
Not being clear on what their product is going to be. Often I will talk to people who have an idea for a fantastic product they believe is going to be huge. The reality is that when you have a product, potentially, whatever you think it is, when you start it will pivot at some point significantly. And that will be the product that takes you forward to be successful. So having clarity around what it is they’re trying to do is really important, and just sticking to their guns, but also being agile. Be prepared to change and pivot so that the product survives. I’ve got plenty of people I talk to all the time, including really good friends who within a day have pivoted their product completely. Some are now thriving but some went the other direction because they just weren’t clear on what they were doing.
What is the future of marketing?
A couple of my daughters friends are trying to start their own e-commerce store. But it’s all done through Instagram, it’s all done through WhatsApp. There’s no websites, and things like that. They’re actually building influence through social media platforms, so their attention span is very short. Appealing to your audience in the future is not going to be through building websites, It’s going to be through short e commerce interactions.
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00:00 – Intro
00:48 – What are the fundamentals of setting up a business?
01:55 – Where you self funded or did you raise finance?
03:30 – How did you get your first clients?
05:12 – Did you work in a specific niche?
06:48 – What issues do you face working with small companies?
08:35 – What barriers do small businesses out up when dealing with you?
09:40 – What have you learnt in business that can help others?
11:20 – How much do you invest in your staff training?
12:28 – AWS
13:58 – How often do you look at your strategy and change it?
16:25 – How did you learn the recruitment process?
18:45 – What key hires have you made?
19:56 – Did you take a lot of profit out for yourselves as you grew?
21:36 – Have you ever turned down a potential client?
22:56 – What has the growth in Apps been like?
23:52 – How long does it take to build an App?
25:25 – Will we eventually be able to self build apps on platforms equivalent to WordPress etc?
27:01 – Will be websites still be relevant in 5 years time?
27:44 – Do kids watch TV anymore?
29:23 – Will TV ads eventually be targeted in the same way that internet adverts are?
30:41 – What happened when stepped away from the day to day running of the business?
33:29 – How hard was it not to closely oversee your senior management team?