I have interests and hobbies outside of work, sport being one of them. I make sure that I prioritise time in my day where I dedicate time to engaging in those kinds of activities, whether it's going for a run in the morning or going for a cycle on the weekend.
I set boundaries and make sure I don’t just roll out of bed at six o’clock and go straight to my laptop even when I know there’s work to be done (there always is). If someone’s trying to ping me during the time I’ve blocked out for myself, unless somebody is actually dying, I’m not going to answer them.
I also think structuring your days so you’re able to do things you enjoy makes you more productive at work in the long run anyway.
Passion and Community in Startup-Building
When you’re not running Strove, you do a lot of running - and swimming, and cycling. It seems that your business is closely tied to your love for sports and physical activity. Do you think there’s value in using your passions as a starting point when coming up with business ideas?
It definitely helps. You can't, at least in my opinion, build a business solely based on passion. I think on some level you need to be intellectually capable as much as you are passionate.
Let's say you want to build a space tourism business because space and travel are two major passions of yours, but you are not an engineer or you haven't worked in that kind of environment before. Despite your passion, trying to start a business in that space might not make a whole lot of sense.
So I think it's a bit of a balance. It does help to have a passion for what you're building, but it needs to be within your domain where you have some sort of expertise as well.
A large part of Strove’s presence on socials is tied to your community events. How do you think community building is valuable as a tool to get a startup off the ground?
There are a few reasons community events are working well for Strove.
As a startup, you probably don't have a ton of money to spend on marketing. Building a community is an organic way to market your business at a very low cost. It drives organic brand awareness and gets people invested in the business.
The events we put together embody the value proposition that we’re pitching which is about being active, healthy, and outside. Because of this, we've been able to align the community events with some of the social media marketing content that we do.
Our events are also a nice way to meet new people and network. We’ve had a few prospective clients come out of the community events where they’ve heard about our events through the grapevine and rocked up to go for a run with us. From there we’re able to build intimate connections with them that we couldn’t have built by putting content out on our socials.
Beyond that, it's a powerful way to find people that you can hire who are already a culture fit for Strove. The type of people who enjoy our events are the exact type of people we’re looking to hire. We’ve already found one or two people who we think would be quite interesting to bring on board.
So our events serve multiple purposes at a very low cost which makes them a super important component of getting Strove off the ground.
Strove's community events are always fun, active, and outside. Here's a video from their LinkedIn of their recent Run-Dip community event:
Game-Changing Advice for Future Founders
What advice would you give to someone looking to start a business?
There are multiple things but the main one is just to be prepared.
First, you need to be prepared for how difficult it is to get something off the ground from scratch and how many problems you are going to face along the way. The media portrays the startup world as this glamorous place but it isn’t like that.
Start your business with an understanding of how emotionally draining it’s going to be. There’ll be something challenging that appears almost every day, at least in the early stages. But when you look back three or four years down the line, you'll have a team, the business will be humming, and it will be worth it.
Second, you need to be emotionally prepared to have people depend on you financially. When someone has children and you’re paying their salary, it's a big responsibility. There's a lot of emotional pressure that comes with that.
If someone wants to work with Strove, get set up or learn more, how can they get started?
The best thing to do is to send me a message on LinkedIn. Or, you can visit our website, which is Stroveapp.com, to set up a chat with our sales team.
If you’d like to keep up with The Delta as we support founders like Chris in building the future with innovative startups, follow us on LinkedIn. If you’d like to join Strove as one of the startups we support with our venture-building services, get in touch here.