- Identifying the Million Dollar Idea in Science.
Guest Speaker: Stephen Falder.
On 5th March 2015, Stephen Falder came to visit us and shared his extensive entrepreneurial experience. As a serial entrepreneur, Stephen has been involved in founding 16 businesses, which include a paint company and the widely successful Byotrol Plc- you may have seen this antimicrobial gel in your lab! He particularly enjoys business development and management i.e. identifying the million dollar idea and building it into a success. He gave us a few pointers that he found useful in this journey.
Five things I have to tell you.
- Relevant idea doesn’t necessarily mean making money – development and execution is key!
- Have a plan, but don’t restrict yourself
- Don’t over analyze everything.
- Entrepreneurs are men of action. It does no good to be too thorough, be adaptive to changes!
- Mistakes are corrected by you taking action- Again, do not dwell on your mistakes!
- You can use other people’s money (OPM) – including friends, family, grant, and investors.
Stephen mostly engages in developing start-ups. He identifies ideas, realizes them with a business plan and taking actions to correct mistakes. Eventually, he leaves it and maintains a small role in the business. He is able to do that due to his ability to pick up the right people for the management team. His secret is choosing the people he’d like to be surrounded with, those who can bring different things to the company.
Stimulating Questions and Answers.
- What is risk like? “Risk is a great feeling.”
- What can academics learn from the business world? “Go for it, don’t be modest.”
- How do you spot a good idea for business? “Look for a problem that is begging for an answer.”
- How long does it take to manage your businesses? “Depends on what level you’re involved. Some 4 days a week, some are just seasonal.”
Our next event is on the 7th of April, titled ‘ Innovation Nation: protecting your cashcow’ Register here