Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Neil Crofts, Co-Founder of Holos Change Ltd., located in The United Kingdom.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Holos is a leadership and culture change consultancy. Our clients are large organizations looking to transform their cultures to be adaptable in the post-conventional world. Typically we work with C-suite and down to CEO minus three or four. With our partner, Tradler, we are increasingly deploying a behaviour change gamification app to reach further into organizations and also provide our services cost-effectively to smaller organizations.
Tell us about yourself
During the Dotcom boom, I was head of the strategy for an internet consultancy called Razorfish. It became clear that it didn't matter how good the technology was that we delivered to our clients; if they didn't have a culture that was adapted to a digital environment, it didn't add value. That situation created a question I have pursued ever since - how do you intentionally create the kind of culture that leads to sustained success in a disrupted environment. It turns out that the answer is authentic leadership. At Holos, we believe that authentic leadership is the only superpower that can save the world. What motivates me each day is working toward our vision of universal authentic leadership.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Holos is my third attempt at creating a fully virtual, decentralized, and interdependent business. Virtual in that we have no offices or employees, decentralized in that authority is widely distributed in the organization, and interdependent in that everyone takes responsibility for the business's success. Making this model work has been our greatest achievement.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
Despite Holos's decentralized and interdependent nature, I still feel a deep responsibility to our community to deliver for them. However, I wouldn't say that is particularly hard, and it is getting easier all the time as we improve how we work and operate.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Don't employ people - employment immediately creates dependency and limits people's options. Instead, create a community where people are well rewarded for the work they do and are not inhibited from working for others.
- Base the business around a vision that is inspiring for all stakeholders so that everyone wants to support you in achieving it.
- Create a culture of trust and psychological safety where people feel inspired (by the vision) and empowered to do their best work.
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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