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Graduate Festival: ‘Essentials of Creative Entrepreneurship’ with Anna Margolis of Startout Steps


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Published date
09 April 2015

Creative entrepreneurs know that there is no perfect handbook to set-up a successful creative enterprise. The best pieces of advice you get come rather from hearing about other entrepreneurs sharing their journey and story. And this is what Anna Margolis of Start-Out steps did to inspire LCF future graduates to jump into the (exciting) journey of starting a creative enterprise at the Graduate School Festival.


Before starting her first business Anna spent years working in the corporate world as an international lawyer, but she never really fitted in the corporate mind-set. One day she decided to quit her job, trained to become a professional coach and set-up her own coaching business. To kick-start her creative enterprise, Anna got a Start-Up loan to build and test the Start-Out Steps methodology.

Before starting-out: build a solid foundation for your creative enterprise by asking yourself the essential…

Start with the WHY. Why do you want to set-up your own business? Is it a HAVE TO or a WANT TO? What drives you? This may be to wake-up everyday knowing that you’ll spend the day doing something you love; to make a positive impact in the world; to create a work that inspires you; to make our own dream come true and not someone else’s dream. Being clear about the why will help you then define the purpose and value proposition that are the essentials of any successful enterprise. To nail down her vision, Anna created a vision board, a very interesting tool that helps you put your vision down on the paper and define the steps that needs to be taken to achieve it.

Next steps

Once you have the vision clear it’s time to define the product or service you’ll be offering to the world, and write a business plan to bring it to life. In your business plan you’ll have to take in to account the following: values and vision of your enterprise (that we just covered); organisational business structure (are you going to be self-employed, licensing or start a limited company?); money (make a personal budget and a budget for your business); market research and marketing (who are your customers and how are you going to reach them); sales (how much are you going to charge your customers); legal requirements (taxes, end-of-the-year reports etc.).  This can seem a little scary, but hopefully the start-outs methdology will help you go through all these points one by one in order to write a solid business plan.

Finally, here are Anna’s takeaways to LCF aspiring entrepreneurs

  • Be open to other’s ideas and inputs
  • Look for inspiration everywhere
  • Be humble, look for support from others in the areas that you don’t know
  • Don’t let failures stop you. Failures are a great opportunity for learning what works and what doesn’t, and refine your strategy accordingly.

Starting-up your own creative enterprise is a really exciting adventure, take the first step today!

Words by Marie James