Emily Wright – A Young Innovator’s experience

Emily Wright – A Young Innovator’s experience


Emily works for Locate East Sussex as our Administrator/Business Liaison. Currently studying an Advanced Diploma in Management, she saw that she did not want to wait for opportunities to arise to make her mark. Here’s her story of putting ideas and her knowledge into practice…

We spend a lot of our time helping innovative companies in East Sussex, knowing what it takes to make a difference. Inspired by my experiences, I came up with a new idea myself, I decided to see what help is out there for a young, budding entrepreneur…

After looking through my contacts and quite a bit of searching, I came across Young Innovators, run by Innovate UK and the Prince’s Trust, with workshops run from the British Airways i360 in Brighton. Workshops designed specifically to support young innovators taking the next step in turning their idea into a businesses… perfect!

Equipped with my idea and a bit of determination, I rolled up at the BAi360 on that Wednesday. I was very impressed with how professional everyone I met was from the minute I stepped into the venue. Attendees from London, a few from Nottingham, they all had different ideas and were just as determined as I was.

We were off! Resli Costawell, our excellent faciltator, helped to crystallise our thoughts, and fast-tracked our thinking. Brainstorming, developing our value propositions, my fellow attendees stopped being random people but collaborators, helping each other to understand our products and overcome issues we might have never considered. We looked into the Business Model Canvas, learning about personas, and who we expect our clients to be, and how not to miss out on hidden opportunities.

We looked at what makes a great idea a great business, pulling apart our concepts of businesses, and thinking about what we need to develop our ideas, building up the motivation to get our product to market. The workshops also helped to focus us on our USPs, the ‘wow’ factor, and how we can use dynamic videos to put our ideas across to investors.

Our first guest speaker, Samantha Kingston of Virtual Umbrella and Hello Founder, gave a talk that was so effective, focusing on the ways people come up with ideas, I am already putting it into practice! While the second speaker, Melanie Lawson of Bare Biology, gave us an inspiring presentation, ‘Turning Your Idea into Reality’, so watch this space for what I am going to do next!

All the while, we never missed a chance to network and join in discussions throughout the day, particularly over lunch, as we were still buzzing with all this new information and how we will put it into action.

By the end, I feel that I am ready to take the next step, that why my project is still a work in progress (you wondered why I didn’t say what they idea was), I feel it is closer to reality than ever before.

It ended with a flight in the BA i360, ending of a wonderfully informative and what turned out to be a very uplifting day… If only the mood had lasted and thoughts of keeping customers happy, meeting their needs and even surprising and delighting them had got through to Southern Trains…. but the delays getting back to Hastings meant I had plenty of time to gather my thoughts and write this blog.

Let’s see what happens next!


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