myGwork: Adrien and Pierre Gaubert
Co-founder Adrien Gaubert explains why his start-up is the LinkedIn for the LGBT community and why having a talented social media manager is vital
Name: Adrien and Pierre Gaubert
Company name: myGwork
Date launched: 12/05/2015
Tell us what your business does:
myGwork is a recruitment hub specially for LGBT professionals; we aim to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
Our business works like a “Pink LinkedIn”.
Where did the idea for your business come from?
We have both experienced homophobic attitudes and behaviour in previous employment. I suffered from gossiping and the stereotypical attitudes from colleagues and Pierre had to deal with very rude sexual jokes from his managers.
myGwork’s impetus came after the passing of our mother; mum was always worried we could not find good job because of other's prejudice. myGwork was created to address this issue, and make sure we are all given an equal chance to succeed in the workplace.
How did you know there was a market for it?
We completed extensive market research before starting our project. We found consulting charities for diversity and inclusion, social networks for gay and lesbian communities but nothing as powerful and career-focused as myGwork.
We came to the conclusion that there were no online space like myGwork where LGBT employees could meet LGBT-friendly employers and networks.
What were you doing before starting up?
Right before starting I completed my masters in Globalisation at King's College and Pierre completed a graduate programme in an IT company in Madrid.
Have you always wanted to run your own business?
Yes! We always wanted to run our own business together. Both our parents and grandparents ran their own businesses and I think we inherited their passion for entrepreneurship.
How did you raise the money?
We are self funded; however we're currently in discussions to gain capital funding. We carefully used the money our mum left us when she passed away.
Describe your business model and how you make money:
Our business model is based on corporate memberships and advertising.
What challenges have you faced and how have you overcome them?
Our main challenge was the marketing. As we have limited funds so we could not invest in running a big campaign. However, we managed to get free advertising from the media.We relied heavily on social media to promote the website, and thanks to our excellent community manager, Unai Manzano, this has been enoughto get the inital work out there.
We also partnered with the LGBT associations such as GPN and GETA.
What was your first big breakthrough?
Our first breakthrough came when the website hit our initial target of five thousand unique users and when members found employment through our platform.
What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
The best advice we can give is to be patient and dedicate the maximum time to your project. Also, it is important to seek advice from different professional backgrounds. In our case, our business idea was shaped through consultations with IT, legal, PR, marketing, business, and HR experts
Where do you want to be in five years' time?
In five years we hope to be able to offer employment opportunities to the LGBT community worldwide, and promote diversity and inclusion.