Home-based Business of the Year 2014
Start-up name: Meredith Bespoke
Founder: Meredith O’Shaughnessy
Started in: 2012
Based in: London
Business description: Creative events and networking agency
Surely such a business shouldn’t have clients that include Lamborghini, Thomson Reuters, Vivienne Westwood, and Manolo Blahnik. No doubt such evidence of start-up success swayed judges in voting the company Home-based Business of the Year for 2014.
Up against excellent jewellery and interior design website Lime Lace and the hugely impressive 16-year-old entrepreneur Ben Towers of Towers Design, Meredith O’Shaughnessy’s business proved the most compelling.
O’Shaughnessy launched her bespoke events and networking agency in early 2012 and has rapidly grown the business to run a number of regular networking events, including the How She Made It evenings for female high-flyers.
Beyond mere client wins and establishing a roster of events, O’Shaughnessy has utilised every ounce of the investment made in her team. With a £150 budget per employee, per month, to put towards training or attending external events such as theatre productions and exhibitions, O’Shaughnessy has one rule: they have to come back and tell the rest of the team what they’ve learnt.
By advocating ‘cross-training’ she’s been able to develop her team, so that each possesses some of the others’ skillsets, ensuring she can be flexible when allocating resource to her growing list of high-profile clients.
With two training grants for the government-backed Growth Accelerator program and acceptance onto the Innovating for Growth programme run by the British Library Business & IP Centre, 2015 looks set to see Meredith Bespoke possess the skills and wherewithal to rapidly grow the business. It may just be time to leave home!