Top Tips from Tim McKay, OK RDY

What was the inspiration behind your company?

I love innovation and hate the idea of simply doing something the same way because it’s always been done that way – it might just be that someone hasn’t thought of a better solution yet. Growing up in a rural town in a time when world revolutionising technology (smartphones and WIFI) become ubiquitous, it became both a blessing and a curse. 

The world had become smaller and more accessible but at the same time much harder to navigate, due to the rapid changes in different industries. I was lucky enough to find amazing mentors and this really helped me grow both, personally and professionally. At OK RDY we don’t think it should just be luck that determines your career or if you can thrive – our aim is to make it just a little bit easier to achieve your goals through a mutually beneficial mentorship!

What has been your biggest challenge since starting your company?

The long sales cycles of enterprise and government was an initial challenge. While we had already developed great partnerships, and found motivated internal champions that loved our innovation – we’d underestimated the time it would take to navigate the machinery of large organisations. We chose to turn this into an advantage and continually improve our user experience through user feedback while our partnerships become formalised; resulting in a better and more accessible release.

Top Tips

  • Do some deep research on existing incumbents and emerging competitors before investing any money into your idea.
  • Validate your business idea with the right users; is it a business to consumer-business to business-business to enterprise play?
  • Identify who will pay for your product/service and how their sales cycle works.
  • Find a team that can complement your strengthens and have an early conversation about expectations.
  • Budget the estimated resources required to determine when you can transition from a weekend hobby to a full-time founder.

The Canberra Innovation Network is a very warm welcome complement to Canberra’s innovation ecosystem. There are already some inspirational businesses and fantastic leaders here but it’s great to have a space that is deeply focused on helping businesses get off the ground. I have personally grown and professionally benefited from participating in The Canberra Innovation Network’s programs and events. The Canberra Innovation Network team really helped us with our business approach, as well as tips for our pitching; pitches were scary but such a great skill to learn.

Everyone is different on how they find their productivity switch. Above basic week management of your time is essential. In addition, blocking out specific research/creativity space is my main approach to aim to achieve 1 major task per day. That’s not simply sending a few emails but rather securing a big meeting, finishing a document, setting up a new tool etc. Just one foot in front of the other and your objectives completed can accumulate by a magnitude. Remember you get out what you put in.

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