This review of Spotlight on Entrepreneurs: Technology Series by CBA Women in Focus is brought to you by Sydney Community Ambassador, Rebecca Law of Nourish Co.

Arriving at the inaugural Spotlight on Entrepreneurs: Technology Series in Sydney last week expecting to hear from a panel of tech-experts, it was surprising to learn the four women on the panel had little or no technology experience prior to starting their own business. Yet, without doubt their tech-driven businesses have been a resourcing success and arguably, they’re part of a generation of tech-entrepreneurs putting Australia on the map.

Here’s why

Pascale Helyar-Moray, founder of Style Rocks explained there are two types of people in the technology space: the ‘’hustlers’’ and the ‘’’hackers’’. These four women unanimously agreed they’re the ‘’hustlers’’. They saw a gap, believed in their idea and got extremely good at delivering their elevator pitch. It’s no coincidence that three of the four came from a background in marketing and have a talent for inspiring and connecting.

The panel agreed, it takes two to tango. The ‘’hacker’’ is every bit as important in getting the venture up, running and on the road to success. Finding and building a relationship with the right ‘’hacker’’ was also key. Pip Jamieson co-founded The Loop with Matt Fayle, ex-Digital Director of MTV. The Loop also continued to use an in-house team of developers. For Kath and Pascale it took a little longer and some hard learned lessons. What made the difference for these two women was getting connected, for Kath it was having the right mentor, whilst Pascale sought an investment partner with the right connections and know-how.

7 tips from the panelists

  1. Collaborate with the Right Partners
  2. Remember, from little things big things grow: think big, start small and then, scale appropriately.
  3. Disrupt or be disrupted: innovate, evolve and be dynamic
  4. Be driven by the desire to impact not $$.
  5. Think like a customer
  6. Make it personal: find ways to personalise and tailor the online experience.
  7. Harness your fear or your fear will harness you.

The take away message

To be a successful technology entrepreneur is more about understanding your audience and mastering your elevator pitch than being an expert developer. That said, without the right ‘hacker’ you’re big idea probably won’t get far.

  • If you’re a hustler, go find your ‘hacker’!
  • The time is now! There are plenty of incubators, venture capitalists, angel investors and entrepreneurs out there just waiting to hear your idea.

Meet the panel

Pip Jamieson, Founder, Ex-Head of Marketing with MTV NZ turned creative and online entrepreneur.

Kim Chen, Co-Founder, Tjoos and StartupCamp: A management consultant turned social entrepreneur with a passion for sustainability

Pascale Helyar-Moray, Founder, StyleRocks: Corporate marketer turned jewelry designer and online entrepreneur.

 Purkis, Director, Le Black Book: Ex-fashion PR with a love of technology became one of Australia’s youngest online entrepreneurs.

Joshua Tanchel, Partner, Deloitte: Start-up specialist with his finger on the pulse of technology, retailing and the future of consumer behaviour.

Women in Focus

Started by the Commonwealth Bank with the aim of helping inspire, inform and connect Australian women with other women in business locally and globally. Women in Focus run an online community and events nationally. Get connected, inspired, and informed by Commonwealth Bank’s Women in Focus community on Facebook, Twitter or check out the tags #WomenCan and #faillearn

About our Ambassador // This review is brought to you by Community Ambassador Rebecca Law, the Director of Nourish Co and a mindful marketer. She is passionate about inspiring positive change, meaningful communications, health, wellbeing and creating authentic customer relationships. Rebecca collaborates with brands and agencies, helping them to become mindful marketers and create happier, healthier communities of customers. Connect with her via Twitter or drop her an email.