This month, I sat down to chat with Chris Pimlott, Managing Director of app development consultancy MyBuzz Technologies. Read on for nuggets of business-related wisdom and advice on navigating the tech world.
How did it all start?
Before MyBuzz, I had 15 to 16 years of experience in lots of areas. I’ve always done software development back from the early days when it was all green screen computers in the 80s. I’d had exposure to so many different industries, and as a qualified coder and project manager I was at a point where I could use my experience to help other people. Starting a business to do this was the next logical step for me. Five years later here we are!
Was the idea of starting your own business daunting?
Absolutely, it’s a rollercoaster. Anybody who says otherwise when they’re starting a business is lying. It is terrifying, because all of sudden you’re going from a steady paycheck where everything is managed for you. You can’t just rock up to work for thirty days and get a paycheck guaranteed at the end of it anymore. But if you’re willing to step up to the challenge, it makes an enormous difference to your life. You’re just so much happier than you’ve ever been. But absolutely terrifying, especially when you get a brown envelope through the door with the HMRC logo on it. But it’s a brilliant ride.
What keeps you motivated?
Being able to do what you really love doing. It’s the passion of being able to be creative and produce things. We have over 200,000 users of our products out there, and they absolutely adore what we do, so even when I do have down times, all I have to do is just remind myself of the positive feedback we’ve received. Being able to step back and see that even though there are bumps in the road, we’ve made a difference to people’s lives, I absolutely love that.
Staying motivated is also all about surroundings, and I’ve got a great team around me. If we’re having a bit of difficulty, we can all just have a laugh and enjoy it, always as a unit. Headspace helps keep us motivated too. The environment is very positive, it allows us to expend that energy and to feed off each other, and it’s just a really great mix of everything. I thrive off positive energy and there is a lot of it here so, it just works really well for me.
What led you to take a desk-space at Headspace?
It was quite simple. I was based in Stockport, but then as we were growing, we needed developers, and all the developers are in Manchester. I moved so I could capture that skill and resource. I looked at quite a few co-working spaces, and this was the only one that seemed to have a really good vibe about it. It presented itself as professional, without being a stuffy business unit. It’s got a great environment, great staff, it’s light, it’s got the social side of it, the events and I’m constantly meeting new people. And the location is absolutely incredible, you couldn’t beat it. So it’s just got everything I was looking for.
It’s great that you’re always meeting new people at Headspace. Has it been a good environment for networking?
Absolutely. In fact, I’ve been working on an app called Spotlite with David (Crack), Managing Director of CDD Services. Spotlite allows you to use mobile technology to do staff onboarding, tenant verification and other identity checks against an individual. The key result is to know, with confidence whether or not somebody is who they say they are for that particular application. Because of my background in cyber-security, I’m really interested in all of that area- technology is great but it’s only as good as how secure it is. If people don’t trust it, they won’t use it. Spotlite is about attempting to capture information as reliably, safely and securely as possible. We actively avoid any projects that don’t excite us. We are very selective about the products we pick up.
What’s the biggest thing you’ve learned on your journey?
To sit back and enjoy it a bit more. Running a business is as easy or as hard as you make it. So long as you’ve got a good business and a business head on you, it will always work. But it also can be the most stressful thing you’ve ever done. If you’ve never run a business before, things are going to go wrong and you will make mistakes. The key thing is to always learn from them, get back on the horse, try a different way of doing things and keep going until you get it right, because that’s part of the fun.
What does the future hold for MyBuzz Technologies?
Conquer the world, obviously? 2019 is going to be very exciting because we’re partnering with other companies and launching some new products. This means that we’re going to be scaling very quickly and taking on even more projects. Lots of interesting things in the pipeline, so watch this space!
If you’re interested in having an app developed for your business, or just have an idea you’d like to develop, Chris and the team at MyBuzz are always happy to have a chat and a cup of coffee. Contact Chris at Chris@MyBuzzTechnologies.co.uk.
Thanks to Chris for chatting with us today. If you’re interested in membership or office space at Headspace group, you can visit our website or contact firstname.lastname@example.org to speak to a member of our team.