Robert Enever was the winner of our competition to win a ticket for last week’s Like Minds event “From Startup to Scaleup” and I asked him for his thoughts… had he met like minds?
WHAT IS YOUR DAY JOB?
In short, I help prevent seabirds, sharks, dolphins, whales and turtles getting accidentally caught in fishing nets.
Fishtek Marine is a company dedicated to supporting sustainable fishing by developing innovative solutions to marine bycatch issues. I joined Fishtek as their Marketing and Sales Director and my role is to raise awareness and increase uptake of our products and capabilities globally.
I work with contacts in key fisheries around the world, where bycatch issues are most prominent, and collaborate with the fishing industry, academia, NGOs and governments.
Having spent 10 years on commercial fishing vessels, followed by completing a PhD in fisheries science, and then work as a civil servant, this is very different from anything I have done before!
HOW’S IT GOING?
Well, I see myself as a scientist, and taking on a sales role, I really did feel like a fish out of water, but it seems to be working! We’re 300% up on last year and we aim to treble again in the next 12 months.
Not having a purely marketing background has been an advantage because I can be the ‘go between’ between scientists, policy makers, academics, and the end users in fishing industry.
WHY DID YOU ENTER THE COMPETITION?
I saw Winning Tenders’ LinkedIn advert for a free position on a conference called ‘Start up to Scale up’. Reading the agenda I realised that it was covering a lot of topics that are gaps in my knowledge and experience. I had a lot to gain and nothing to lose.
WHAT WERE YOUR FIRST IMPRESSIONS OF LIKE MINDS?
When you’ve come from a scientific and policy background, where caution is the watchword and evidence is key to any decision, the world of business and marketing can seem a bit “David Brent”; brash, self-assured and full of straplines.
I loved the morning presentations from Lego, LinkedIn and especially Stephens Scown on building a culture of positivity… I found it inspiring to think about getting the best out of teams by encouraging their members and picked up some really useful tips.
The afternoon breakout sessions were rather more ‘salesy’ than I would have liked, but hey, I guess you have to keep the sponsors happy. Especially the ‘Principal Evangelist’ from Amazon, not sure my ego would allow such a grand title.
WHAT WAS YOUR TAKEAWAY FROM THE EVENT?
Apart from cod & chips
I’m really enjoying my new role; my scientific brain is challenged and the ‘Essex Boy’ in me is naturally drawn to the negotiating and marketing aspects. Attending events such as Like Minds takes me out of my comfort zone, puts me in contact with different people, and adds important components to my knowledge base.
I am increasingly interested in understanding how I can communicate with those from different cultures and environments. I am meeting up with another Like Minds delegate next week to pursue a strategy for entering markets in the Far East… so it was definitely a worthwhile networking opportunity!
WE’RE GLAD YOU ENJOYED AND FOUND VALUE IN THE DAY
Note to readers – make sure you enter our next competition 😉
Picture above is of Robert Enever with largest recorded Thornback Ray recorded in UK waters!