Startups 100 Index welcomes Eloise Skinner as guest judge

Eloise Skinner, founder of The Purpose Workshop and One Typical Day, will be judging the ‘Young Entrepreneur’ award for the Startups 100 index this year.

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Skinner, an author, psychotherapist and former corporate lawyer, wears many hats in the world of entrepreneurship. 

The host of ‘Speaking of Startups‘ podcast and a founder herself, Skinner talks to us about her role as a Startups 100 index 2024 judge and shares her criteria for evaluating the winning startups.

Who is Eloise Skinner?

Born in East London, on the 19th floor of a tower block, Skinner’s parents were musicians. Their  influence led to her first ‘business’ enterprise – teaching piano to children! 

After achieving a triple first class law degree from Cambridge University, she saw how access to learning could change lives and found her purpose  – business with social impact. Now, she is the founder of two companies focused on empowering through education – The Purpose Workshop, a resource to help create meaning personally and professionally, and One Typical Day, a platform that assists students in navigating their initial career steps.

Passionate about supporting other young entrepreneurs, as well as consultancy and mentoring, Skinner sits on the youth board of the UK’s national social mobility charity, and is an Enterprise Advisor for the Mayor of London’s education and careers strategy. 

Her impressive track record as a businesswoman has been recognised with multiple accolades including as a Federation of Small Businesses London ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ finalist, ‘One To Watch’ by Forbes, and as a ‘Social Entrepreneur To Watch’ by the Great British Entrepreneur Awards.

The winning startup recipe

As an early starter herself, Skinner knows the trials and tribulations that young business owners face on their journey to success. 

However, she’s convinced that what young entrepreneurs may lack in experience and investment, they can make up for in energy, enthusiasm and the ability to think outside the box. Challenging the status quo, fresh perspectives and a willingness to take risks that lead to groundbreaking ideas are what she’s looking out for in Startups 100 applicants.

Skinner firmly believes that young entrepreneurs don’t need a wealth of experience in a specific sector or industry to conceive brilliant business ideas. In fact, she sees youth as a distinct advantage, believing that young people often possess a unique perspective unburdened by the constraints of the establishment or rigid industry rules. 

Reflecting on the challenges of the past year, Skinner also highlights the value of  agility and resilience.

The ability to adapt and respond to rapidly-changing circumstances is a huge advantage,” she notes,  stressing the importance of learning from mistakes as much as from successes.

For young founders aspiring to be on the Startups 100 index, Skinner is looking for “Ambition, vision, initial traction, and a strong mission or purpose behind the business.” 

Her focus extends beyond mere financial success; she is seeking entrepreneurs who are driven by a higher purpose, and who don’t allow themselves to be held back by age. 

More than anything, it’s the creativity and innovation that she’s looking forward to discovering. “Learning about new startups and business ideas is always so exciting,” Skinner enthuses.

Youthful enthusiasm

Skinner’s message to aspiring young entrepreneurs is clear: don’t be discouraged by a lack of experience. Instead, leverage your fresh outlook and unbridled enthusiasm to innovate and create businesses that challenge the norm and drive positive change in the world.

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Written by:
Stephanie Lennox is the resident funding & finance expert at Startups: A successful startup founder in her own right, 2x bestselling author and business strategist, she covers everything from business grants and loans to venture capital and angel investing. With over 14 years of hands-on experience in the startup industry, Stephanie is passionate about how business owners can not only survive but thrive in the face of turbulent financial times and economic crises. With a background in media, publishing, finance and sales psychology, and an education at Oxford University, Stephanie has been featured on all things 'entrepreneur' in such prominent media outlets as The Bookseller, The Guardian, TimeOut, The Southbank Centre and ITV News, as well as several other national publications.

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