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A Day in the Life of a Young Entrepreneur....By John Macleod

Mon, 26 November 2012

John Macleod is the young entrepreneur behind Clear Notes and winner of a Shell LiveWIRE Grand Ideas Award for August 2012.

Firstly, to add some context to my work life, my business is a company called LUX Creations Ltd.  We are an innovative design company who create products which solve everyday problems.  Our latest product is the revolutionary ‘Clear Notes’. They are the world’s only transparent & re-usable sticky notes and have received great accolades from industry specialists and customers alike.

Secondly, to be asked to write about ‘A Day in the Life of a Young Entrepreneur’ is a great question as it is nearly impossible - no two days have ever been the same!  I suppose, to those of you who are involved in entrepreneurship and those of you who are aspiring to do so, this can be one of the key allures of such a lifestyle.

Most commonly a day would include working on the design of our brand, the development of products and defining markets we can target. We work right from the crux of an issue people commonly find in their lives and devise solutions to help solve this, a method which can create hundreds of concepts and most of them would never get further than the ideas board! However every now and again one clearly stands above the rest and we enter the research & development phase. This is what happened with Clear Notes, but there are many obstacles to overcome before a great idea reaches the market. For example; IP (Intellectual Property), development, legal issues, manufacturing, packaging, pricing, etc., the list goes on! So as you can see, each day brings its own challenges and decisions to be made.
One of the great things about being your own boss and involved in the enterprise culture in the UK at the moment is the vast range of business events and learning opportunities that arise. I’d like to add, though, that not all events will be relevant to your sector and it’s important to research an event to make sure it’s worth your while. Particularly with focuses like Global Entrepreneurship Week recently, there is plethora of insightful speakers, workshops and incredible openings to network and grow your contacts.  Perhaps two to three times a month there will be a workshop or an event that I will attend, to listen to an inspiring speech, pick up some marketing tips and network with industry decision makers, as well as having the chance to promote my business and our products.

I suppose the days which are fairly few and far between, but are those which entrepreneurs live for, are when a significant milestone is reached, such as a product being patented, a new retailer stocking your products or a large client helping to grow the business. These are the days all the hard work and long hours are put in for, and as Thomas Edison said;

“I never did anything worth doing entirely by accident.... Almost none of my inventions were derived in that manner. They were achieved by having trained myself to be analytical and to endure and tolerate hard work.”

I think that sums up entrepreneurship quite well! At times I think it can be painted as a great lifestyle where you can become hugely successful without putting a lot in, however the reality is it can, and probably will, be very hard work at times and require a lot of sacrifices. But if you’re motivated by those moments of achievement and progress it can be the greatest decision you ever make.

John Macleod is Director at LUX Creations Ltd and won a Shell LiveWIRE Grand Ideas Award in August 2012 as well as being one of the Shell LiveWIRE Hot 40 businesses in the running for the Shell LiveWIRE Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2012.

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