Archives For What I Learned From..

I thought I knew something about business, and [then] went out and [learned that I] didn’t really know anything. [I] had no experience really. If you’re not exposing yourself to outside influences then you’re not growing, and you’re not learning.” — Andrew Hardwick

There has to be some sort of plan that’s founded with a truth about the business, about yourself, that there is something that you have proof points against, [and] to have a brand value proposition that has meaning and substance behind it.” — Andrew Hardwick

Having a story, knowing your why, is so very important not just from an external point of view but from an internal point of view. If you don’t personally engage and relate to what you’re doing and how you’re doing it, you’re probably not going to do very well.” — Andrew Hardwick

The best way to find a solution to a problem is to ask people who have done it before.” — Joe Woodham

When I started out, as weird as it sounds, I went straight to one of my competitors and I got their advice. As weird as that might seem to people, they were open with the information. I’ve always gone and spoken with my competitors, because as much as they are my competitors, they are my biggest allies as well.” — Joe Woodham

When it comes to business sometimes you’re so focused on getting the job done you just expect people to follow you and it doesn’t happen that way.” — Andrew Hardwick

The best way to engage people is to make them feel part of it. Let them have some autonomy. Let them make their mistakes. Let them have their input into our direction and where we’re going. I can categorically say everyone in our business has that ability to do that. And once they realise it, it’s funny the shift in their engagement in what we’re doing.” — Andrew Hardwick

At the start I found a niche and I leveraged the shit out of it. I found what no one else was doing and tried to work with that because then I could use it as a branding strategy, a marketing strategy, and to bring in clients. I just find areas that are pain points for the customers that I want to work with, and I leverage them.” — Joe Woodham

With thanks to

Andrew Hardwick founded strategic creative agency Hard Edge in his home 12 years ago. Today the award-winning business works with Mercedes Benz, Telstra and the National Road Safety Partnership. Andrew explains how he overcame the challenges in those early days.

Joe Woodham is the founder of Torii Recruitment, specialising in finding the right team members for the IT sector. Joe describes the benefits of working alongside his competitors and how he consults them for advice.

About Masters Series by WeTeachMe

Masters Series is a show about inspiring entrepreneurs, creative thinkers, and visionary dreamers, and the stories behind how they built their companies.

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Show brought to you by

Masters Series is presented by WeTeachMe.

Our strategic alliance partners: MYOB, SitePoint and Entrepreneur’s Organization.

Our media partners: Startup Victoria and Digital Marketers Australia.

Our content partners: Written & Recorded.

The views expressed by the contributors on this show are linked websites are not necessarily endorsed by the publisher.

Question of the day

What was your favourite quote or lesson from this episode? Please let me know in the comments.

Business is a lot about problem solving. Still now, I feel like most of my time is spent problem solving and working out solutions.” — Emma Welsh

For someone thinking about going into their own business, it’s good to be comfortable with change. Change is always going to happen. Things are never going to go to plan.” — Emma Welsh

This thing of having the right or perfect idea: Our idea was to have a juice business. We’ve moved into healthy drinks and snacks. My idea was to never be in distribution. I now have 40 vans on the road.” — Emma Welsh

Tom and I had both worked for large companies. We were both used to having colleagues. And we were both used to having plenty of money to spend. I don’t think we were nearly thrifty enough [at Emma & Tom’s]. We hired too many people too quickly.” — Emma Welsh

At the start it’s so hard to get money coming into the door, and it’s so hard to be profitable. We would have been better off if we hadn’t hired so many people and had done a lot of those things ourselves.” — Emma Welsh

It’s hard to make that final profit that ends up in your pocket.” — Emma Welsh

With all of these things that lined up [it] was one of the most stressful times I’ve ever had as a business owner, but it was also one of the most rewarding.” — Bill McCorkell

I started up a business called Archiblox because this is where my passion really is. I had an opportunity of not only being an architect, but also being a builder at the same time. I really enjoy the opportunity of taking ownership of a project from the initial contact with clients to the handing over of keys at completion.” — Bill McCorkell

We spent a year working on [Emma & Tom’s], did everything and spent all this money, and the only bottler we had identified who could do it said, “We can’t do it.” So Tom and I got into a car, drove up and saw them, and said, “You have to do it.” You work out a way around it. Being in business, the thing I’ve learnt is that there is always a way and it’s the job of the business owner to drive it forward.” — Emma Welsh

My motivation to have my own business is freedom. I worked for big corporates and I understood the value, the power, and the entrée that you got [if you worked for one]… it’s pretty good. But I just really love freedom. I don’t like the feeling that someone is wondering where I am. That’s what really drove me to want to be my own boss and to have my own business.” — Emma Welsh

With thanks to

Emma Welsh was restructured out of a job when old friend Tom got in touch to suggest they start a business. Emma and Tom’s is one of the most recognised juice brands in Australia, but their first batch almost didn’t make it into the bottle. Emma describes the experience of leaving the 9–5 and how the role of the entrepreneur is basically about problem solving.

Bill McCorkell experienced life as a builder and an architect before striking out on his own to combine both skills with Archiblox. Less than a decade later the business has been recognised for innovation by Fast Company in the US. Bill admits to making mistakes, but says the secret is to learn from them to do better next time.

About Masters Series by WeTeachMe

Masters Series is a show about inspiring entrepreneurs, creative thinkers, and visionary dreamers, and the stories behind how they built their companies.

Subscribe to show

Show brought to you by

Masters Series is presented by WeTeachMe.

Our strategic alliance partners: MYOB, SitePoint and Entrepreneur’s Organization.

Our media partners: Startup Victoria and Digital Marketers Australia.

Our content partners: Written & Recorded.

The views expressed by the contributors on this show are linked websites are not necessarily endorsed by the publisher.

Question of the day

What was your favourite quote or lesson from this episode? Please let me know in the comments.