“Advice for my 25 year old self”: by Innovation Cluster Board Member, Tim Barrie

“Advice for my 25 year old self”: by Innovation Cluster Board Member, Tim Barrie

Tim Barrie
An Innovation Cluster Board Member and Peterborough’s 2013 Business Citizen of the Year, Tim Barrie of Merit Precision Moulding Ltd – an Innovation Cluster “Silver Sponsor” – spoke recently to the Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce’s Breakfast Club on the topic of advice he would give his 25 year old self!
Tim presented 15 points. Here are a few of them:
Work for someone else first

  • Build up some experience and personal equity
  • Soak up the experience you will learn everyday
  • You will learn as much from your bad bosses as you do from the good

Your biggest challenge will be managing people

  • Be prepared to “lose a lot of battles to win the war”
  • Do what is fair for both parties
  • Explain your decisions and be consistent over time

Cash is king in small business

  • You must be financially literate
  • You need to be able to make a cash flow statement out of a balance sheet and income statement
  • You need to understand where cash gets eaten up

Get yourself a small advisory board

  • Small business can be very lonely
  • Four advisors that meet quarterly
  • Forces you to manage and not just fight fires

Work/life balance

  • • Get a hobby outside your business
  • • Go home for lunch
  • • Don’t take work home
  • • Give back to your community
  • • Don’t flog your wealth, if you have any

The truth about small business

  • It is highly volatile and unpredictable
  • You must be resilient and flexible

Tim concluded his advice for his 25 year old self with: “after all the hard work there is nothing better than working for yourself.”
The Chamber is a Community Partner of the Innovation Cluster. Their Breakfast Club meets on the second Tuesday of every month at the Carousel Restaurant. Coffee’s on at 7 am with breakfast at 7:30. Click here for further information!

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