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Business leader Sarah McVittie offers advice on entrepreneurship

Sarah McVittie has offered advice to budding entrepreneurs in her latest column for Elite Business magazine. The entrepreneur shared her experiences of running a start-up, stating that she learned what she should and shouldn’t do when running and growing a business at the same time.

McVittie runs Dressipi, a fashion tech start-up that is based in London, with co-founder Donna Kelly. She brings shareholding and sales experience to the business, while Kelly focuses on the products.

Investment

McVittie advised entrepreneurs who are just starting out to think about whether or not their business needs investment and to “make sure” that they have explored all other avenues, such as personal loans and commercial partnerships.

She added that entrepreneurs who are looking for investments should choose “smart investors” who can add “real value beyond the funding.”

She also warned founders of start-up companies to beware of people who are “fishing” instead of having a genuine interest in the business.

“As a founder, your time is precious and needs to be used carefully. I also know that people who want to invest tend to let you know pretty quickly,” she said.

McVittie also stated that entrepreneurs “need to listen” at the beginning and end of the process, and highlighted the importance of listening to what customers and employees say in order to learn.

Risks

According to McVittie, founders should take “calculated risks rather than a gamble”, and have plenty of knowledge about the business, which will enable them to tell the difference between the two.

“Of course it’s not foolproof – nothing is – but knowledge is what you fall back on when you have to think a situation right through to the end. It gives you context and it gives you enough perspective to make a gut decision that’s based on more than raw emotion,” she said. 


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