David was an Awesome Acorn on the 7th Acorn Enterprise Business Accelerator Programme in Fife. Read on to find out more about his business, advice for other new businesses and how he benefited from the Programme.
Blue Star St Andrews Ltd
Why did you apply for the Acorn Enterprise Business Accelerator Programme?
Initially I wanted to build my confidence as a business owner and tap into as many resources/networks to enable the business to thrive and grow.
However what was my initial goal changed dramatically when the Programme started, then again that is part of the process of being an Acorn!
As a business owner, how would you describe yourself in three words?
Caring, motivational and driven.
What or who motivated you to form your business?
Family – without my family Blue Star would never have come about, oh and that little thing of being without a job so maybe necessity too!
How would you describe your business in three words?
Caring, adaptable, outstanding
What was the best bit of advice your received on the Business Accelerator Programme?
Never take no as an answer and always dream big!
How has your business grown since being on the Programme?
Blue Star went through massive changes during the Programme: we re-branded, launched our own eco-friendly cleaning products and moved from our home office to an office space in St Andrews.
The company has grown and continues to do so but I feel that my own personal growth that came from being part of the Programme has really made the biggest impact on Blue Star as a business.
What are you most proud of about your business?
Blue Star has always been a family effort and I could never have imaged when my family and I completed a door to door leaflet drop in Feb 2014 that 3 years down the line we would be employing 15 staff members and offering services to over 100 customers.
What are the three most important things you would tell an aspiring business “Acorn”?
- Believe in your gut instinct.
- Be open to other people’s views and ideas.
- Just be you – there is only one of you so that alone makes you unique.
What is the most amusing incident that has happened in the history of your business?
The one that springs to mind is the very amusing telephone conversation I received about a dirty toilet rim!…I will not go any further with that one though as a lot of the Saplings already know this story!
There was also another time I attended the wrong property for an assessment visit and the elderly lady welcomed me in and made me a cuppa. I never realised it was the wrong house until the actual customer called to ask why I wasn’t at our pre-arranged meeting!!!
If you started over, what one thing would you do differently?
I would set much clearer goals and have a plan of where I wanted the company to be on certain dates.
Who’s the most famous or interesting character you’ve met whilst running your business?
All of my elderly customers have amazing stories to tell and their lives have been so interesting that I couldn’t possibly pick one.
How do you unwind?
I attend Crossfit classes, if that counts as unwinding?!
What book would you recommend that every entrepreneur read?
Who Moved My Cheese? by Ken Blanchard
How would you describe Acorn Enterprise?
It really was a rollercoaster ride but it has had such a massive impact on not only my business but me personally.
It’s thought provoking, challenging, eye-opening…and that is just a few things that spring to mind so in the words of Kallum with a K – “IT’S AWESOME!”.