May 8, 2018, by Carla

Nottingham Entrepreneur Shares Top Tips on Starting Your Own Business

By Rebecca Heasman, Employability Officer, Sutton Bonington Campus

Do you have a brilliant business idea? Do you want to be your own boss? Does the thought of launching your own business appeal to you more than other graduate career paths?

If so, you are not alone. Many University of Nottingham alumni have gone on to make successful careers as entrepreneurs. In this week’s blog Terri Holloway, University of Nottingham alumna and founder of SwapMeat Ltd, shares her experience and top tips.

How did you get from student to owning your own business?

After completing my PhD in Nutritional Sciences, I was inspired to create a business based upon the clinical research that I developed around the health benefits of plant-based diets.

The Ingenuity Lab was pivotal in launching and developing my business. They provided advice and support, which was essential for developing my idea. The lab was a magnificent resource for me and I would definitely recommend it if you’re interested in entrepreneurship.

What are some of the challenges you faced and how have you overcome them?

There are many challenges when it comes to building a start-up venture. Particularly the level of learning and hard work required. If you want to pursue a new business, I would suggest you invest your time in developing a business that you genuinely care about and believe in.

For me, developing Swap Meat Ltd., was about helping people to prevent diseases that are becoming increasingly prevalent in the western world. Having this mission at the core of my business keeps me focused and constantly driven by the company’s aim. I think that every business needs a true motivating factor to inspire them when things are challenging.

What skills are needed to be an entrepreneur?

Entrepreneurs should be self-starters, risk takers, genuine, passionate, and definitely hard-working individuals.

If you can establish that there is truly a market for your business, continue to work extremely hard, believe in yourself and never give up!

What advice would you give to students considering starting up their own business?

My advice would be to write your idea down and try to define your key offering. Follow this with research to determine if your idea is unique, and whether something similar is currently available in the market.

Consider: What can you offer that is unique and different? What’s your unique selling point (USP)? Once you feel that you have an idea which is strong and marketable, then join the Ingenuity Lab. They will give you all of the support you need to start a fantastic business.

Feeling inspired? There’s a wealth of resources at your fingertips as a Nottingham student. Find more information on entrepreneurship on the Careers website, and explore the Ingenuity Lab here.

Posted in Entrepreneurship