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#IMAGEinspires: How To Survive Working In A Start-Up

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We catch up with some of the nominees for Start-Up of the Year at this year’s IMAGE Businesswoman of the Year Awards to talk what it takes to survive the fast-paced and frequently atmosphere that is the start-up world. Get tickets to next Monday’s event here.

You need the right kind of attitude. 

To be a start-up you need grit and stamina.  It’s that little extra push every day that gets you over the line.
Bernadette Kinsella, CEO, worldBOX.ie

You need to have patience but have enough impatience to get out and get things done. You need to be willing to step outside your comfort zone at every given opportunity.
Niamh Hogan, owner and creator, Holos Skincare

True grit, blind faith, boundless energy, an awareness and tolerance of what you know you don’t know, curiosity, passion, ability to process crazy detailed facts about things you never thought you’d need to know about and aren’t particularly interested in, striving for (if never reaching) objectivity & some degree of equanimity.
Sinead Duffy, founder and creative director, Yogandha Ltd

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Catherine Buggy, director and shareholder, Boutique Bake

Accept life is going to be busy for a while.

Use ANYTHING & EVERYTHING that will make your life easier. Hailo, Hassle, Deliveroo – use them all. You’re not lazy, you’re a HIGH-POWERED EXECUTIVE.
Jennie McGinn, CEO, Opsh

If you don’t have a scary amount of work on your to-do list you’re probably not doing your job and once you overcome one obstacle another one inevitably pops up in its place.
Isolde Johnson, co-founder, Cool Beans

Organise a proper farewell party to your friends. Genuinely. Or else you’ll be reported MIA or excommunicated for being a terrible person.
Jennie McGinn, CEO, Opsh

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Niamh Hogan, owner and creator, Holos Skincare

But don’t let it overwhelm you. 

Say no. Yes, we are superwomen, but we can’t do all of the things at once.
Jennie McGinn, CEO, Opsh

Being able to step back when you need to is also important, it is often during these times that the most effective work gets done, the times when you aren’t elbow deep in enquiries, emails and online orders can be the times the most amazing ideas come to you.
Niamh Hogan, owner and creator, Holos Skincare

Ask for help, and keep asking. It can be lonely and terrifying and overwhelming and if you don’t reach out, you might sink. Plus, you’d be amazed how much people like to help.
Jennie McGinn, CEO, Opsh

Set a trigger for a mindful moment for you to exhale away the busy mind and re-calibrate to make sure what you’re doing right now is bringing you closer to where you really want to go.
Sinead Duffy, founder and creative director, Yogandha Ltd

Remember why you made this decision

Even in the darkest hour when the bank account was nearly empty I kept that fire burning that made me start on this road in the first place. For me that is the women who have survived breast cancer, each time I falter I think of them.
Ciara Donlon, CEO, THEYA

Jennie, Sarah and Grace McGinn, OPSH

Jennie, Sarah and Grace McGinn, OPSH

Teamwork is imperative

Keep close to you people who you trust and who have the skills a business needs, financial and legal advice have been paramount.
Ciara Donlon, CEO, THEYA

Choose your founders carefully. You have to battle together.
Jennie McGinn, CEO, Opsh

Your team must consist of people who believe whole heartedly in the company, they need to be there for more than the job.
Niamh Hogan, owner and creator, Holos Skincare

Bernadette Kinsella, CEO, worldBOX.ie

Bernadette Kinsella, CEO, worldBOX.ie

Celebrate the small wins

From winning a new customer to gaining a new stockist of your product, it’s so important to stay positive on your start-up journey.
Catherine Buggy, director and shareholder, Boutique Bake

To keep sane you have to celebrate the small wins. We do 30-second dance parties if something particularly good happens.
Isolde Johnson, co-founder, Cool Beans

Celebrate the little things, including the office sign, the first customer, the first contrary tweet. Else, what’s the point?
Jennie McGinn, CEO, Opsh

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