We went to visit Brill Power’s co-founders Damien and Carolyn in their start-up offices in Oxford a year after they won the New Energy Challenge. While we sat down in their batteries lab, we asked them what they have learned and which practical insights they could share with other start-ups. Whether you are starting up your own business, are seasoned in cleantech or working hard on scaling up your innovative solution – get inspired by some real entrepreneurial spirit!
1 – “Wanting to have a hugely successful and rich company is not enough. You really need to believe in what your company is doing.” If it isn’t your passion that gets you through hard times – and there will be hard times – you need to find motivation somewhere deep inside. How are you making the world better?
2 – “Try not hire people who are just like you.” It’s all about balance in your team. Try to figure out which skills complement yours and don’t be afraid of getting people on board with opposing views.
3 -“Get your message easy to communicate but don’t oversimplify it!” Learning from pitch coaches and slide deck designers, it’s important to keep in mind who your audience is. Try explaining your solution in the shortest possible way! And a pro tip: make it tangible by trying to compare what you do with something we do, use or see daily.
4 – “If I tried and failed, who cares. At least I’ve tried.” This is where Damien refers to his grit to getting things done. Failure only means the time for your idea wasn’t ripe and it’s time to move on and work on another product or service. Look at life like a series of lessons you can learn instead of reaching goals!
5 – “Our pitch coach tore apart our pitch deck. But he gave us something awesome: a different angle.” Have as many people criticize your presentation constructively. Ask them what they felt was missing, how you can come across more clearly and if they can summarize your pitch in a way they could forward your message to other easily.
Want to learn more about Brill Power? Watch our short documentary about their story.