Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in business development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Graham Christie, Co-Founder, and CEO of Changing The Game, located in Sydney, NSW, Australia.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I left corporate life after 20 years. I became disillusioned with the complacency and had bigger ideas about how to shake up the marketplace.
Tell us about yourself
The reason for the current business is a lightbulb moment that I had with my (now) business partner. It occurred to us that proven, independent, and expert knowledge is difficult or expensive (or both) to access and adopt. So we are primarily driven by a mission to democratize leading practice and get it into the hands of people that can use it today.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Leading a great team to conquer the domestic market we entered in under two years, gobbling up awards along the way, then scaling it into multiple markets. Being the co-author of a book published by a tier-one business publisher and sold in over 40 countries is pretty neat, I must admit.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
I think there are three hardest things:
- Getting the people mix right. Small and young businesses are highly exposed to getting the chemistry wrong when hiring new people, so buy the person and hire the skills in that order.
- Balancing growth with stability. I believe the best enduring businesses are built on profit, not debt, so choosing when to double down on growth or accept a greater debt is a tough decision that needs experienced heads wrestling with it.
- Brutal honesty with what makes the business truly different and avoiding hollow promises and values, internal myths, and calling out biases when they show themselves.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Find a co-founder or two. Solo founders statistically find it tougher, and failures are higher.
- Make sure that the problem your business solves is real and at a large scale.
- You need to be at least very engaged in the sector you're in. It can't be primarily about money.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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