Last month, I attended Edinburgh Startup Summit. The one-day event in Scotland celebrated startups across the UK and featured three different tracks focusing on People, Processes and Performance. Check out our five key insights for entrepreneurs here:

  1. Work out your purpose. Starting a business is hard work and requires resilience and determination. This means that you have to have a lot of passion and purpose. Without them, you're eventually bound to give up. That's why Gary Turner, Founder of XERO, advised entrepreneurs at Edinburgh Startup Summit to work out their purpose and figure out why they do what they do.
  2. Don't build an unscaleable business. Scaling your business might seem like a long way off, but the processes you are implementing today are already impacting your growth journey. For example, unscaleable business processes can lead to time-consuming system changes in the longer-term. To avoid this, entrepreneurs should ask themselves the questions whether the processes they're using "will scale". If your processes are unsuitable for scaling, find alternatives. 
  3. Don’t register your business channels using your personal data. When registering business channels, like Google Adwords, avoid using your personal email and personal data where possible. When the time comes to potentially sell your business, you don’t want to hand over your personal data to someone else. Sure, you can change all the data when it comes to it, but this would cost a lot of time and effort which can be avoided. 
  4. Your business is not just a product or service. It’s an experience. Having a good product or service isn't good enough anymore. People buy into experiences. What experience is your business providing? How does your brand or message align with this experience? To deliver an effective customer experience, your brand needs to be consistent in its delivery. Map out how your organisation is delivering a genuine experience to customers across all parts of their journey.
  5. You don't need to be a social enterprise to deliver social value. You don’t need to be a 'not-for-profit' to do good. Any business can adopt a corporate social responsibility framework providing it aligns with the team's aspirations. Rob Spiron, Director of Imagination Machine, outlined key three elements that constitute an operable CSR framework: 1. Work out your mission, 2. Decide on your values, and 3. Outline your ‘ethical boundaries’.