There being just two of us in the team at Wireless Fitness, as much as we like each other and like working together, our journey to launch and beyond (success? Fame?!) can feel at times a touch isolated. We’re pretty good at firing each other up to get stuff done and so on, but all the same, it can sometimes be like one lone voice in the Albert Hall, trying to replicate the sound of a choir – it’s not really the same.
We also both have somewhat solitary jobs as personal trainers. Having said that, having been a PT for three years now, I’ve manipulated my client base so it contains mainly fun, sparky people who entertain me each hour, as much as I do them (as well as beast them).
However, with the very real threat of investment looming, we have been advised to assemble a board of Non-Exec Directors and Advisors, which has led to us getting back in contact with some very interesting people we know. We currently hot desk in a shared office space, which is great when everyone’s in, as it does provide a buzzy, inspiring atmosphere; the issue is there are lots of start-ups here, who – like us – don’t stick to regular hours, so it can’t be relied on when you’re looking to bounce an idea off someone.
Previously, we shared an office with the amazing www.hassle.com
(seriously, if you need a cleaner, look here first), a start-up, a few years ahead of us, who had raised the money we’re looking to now and had a small team of committed employees. Sharing with them gave us something to aim for; the next rung of the ladder to climb and they also had a Board of useful, interesting and passionate supporters who were invested in the company and everyone’s success. Since then, they have been bought for more than £20m by a European rival, and if we can emulate even a portion of their success we’ll be very happy indeed.
A board is there to provide guidance, top level governance, alternate points of view and to help steer the company to success. It also doesn’t require days and days of input from the members; at the least, just Quarterly meetings. However, the opportunity also offers the chance for more experienced people to remember what it’s like to be at the coalface again; to fight for a start-up (that’s already survived three years) and help push it to greatness.
We’ve had some positive responses and applications already which is really encouraging – getting the Board in place will be another step to feeling like we’re ready to compete with (and get noticed by) the big boys, and we’re chomping at the bit to get cracking.
Next time: Embracing Geekdom
Matt Boyles is Director of Sales and Marketing at Wireless Fitness and can be contacted on email@example.com