Our Doing Business with Big Business event is the perfect opportunity for startups interested in winning contracts to learn more about how the process works, and to gain advice from the buyers themselves. At the last event we had a quick chat with some of the attendees – here’s what the workshop taught them.

William Adoasi, Vitae London

Vitae London sells watches that truly make a difference – each one puts a child through school.

William Adoasi, Vitae London

The biggest lesson for me was the importance of seeing things from a big business buyer perspective. It's so easy to get caught up in your own bubble as an entrepreneur, so to see things from their perspective was priceless and will realign my strategy. The insight was invaluable and has better equipped me to pitch my products to big businesses.

Robert Manley, Illuminated Apparel

Illuminated Apparel create innovative glow-in-the-dark clothing - you just 'draw' on the garments with a laser pen.

I really enjoyed DBWBB – it provided some really interesting insights into the world of procurement from two very experienced professionals in the industry.

I took back plenty of ideas to implement in my business going forward - I couldn't recommend it more.

Especially useful to me was the idea that the buying process is not just centered around price. Making sure you have all the relevant information ready is vital, too.

Robert Manley, Illuminated Apparel

Frances Lucraft, Grace and Green

Grace and Green sell eco-friendly, all-natural feminine hygiene products, with a focus on education and social good.

Frances Lucraft, Grace & Green

The number one tip I learnt was that you should focus on building structure into your company to ensure that your business is scaleable - this is crucial in meeting the robust and strict commitments made by larger organisations, and for them to take you seriously as a supplier.  You must be diligent, but also do your due diligence - meaning it’s vital your supply chain is resilient and able to mitigate and adapt against any unforeseen circumstances, instilling as much confidence and trust on their side that you are a competitive supplier.

There are a lot of intricacies in dealing with procurement practices within large organisations which can inevitably can make small start-ups feel overwhelmed and ill-prepared.

I would recommend this workshop to other entrepreneurs - it was a valuable practical workshop offering first-hand advice on planning and execution in this process, coupled with incredible networking opportunities.  If you're an entrepreneur looking to do business with big businesses you would be foolish not to take this opportunity to give your business the chance to trade with other large businesses.

Darcy Ida, Ida Pod

Ida Pod is a professional photobooth service that focuses on on providing an amazing experience at events.

Darcy Ida, Ida Pod

The number one tip I got from DBWBB was that there is a lot more that goes on behind the scenes. It’s not as simple as someone just getting in touch and deciding there and then. It’s important to be aware that their approach may be different, and to follow up on lost leads – but whether you are successful or not, it all helps you build on your pitching and selling skills. 

It has helped me be clearer on why I charge what I charge, and also reiterated the importance of going into negotiations knowing what my objective is. We as entrepreneurs should never stop growing and learning - you can never know too much.

 

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