I’m not sure what that little voice is inside us which pushes us out of our comfort zone, but it has a habit of saying “I told you so”. Yesterday I was pacing around the office, having to awkwardly practice a presentation with my colleagues… “Who’s idea was this!”. I don’t normally get too nervous delivering presentations and that’s probably because I’m usually in the familiar territory of an IT event with an audience that are “at work” and on the whole happy to listen to your opinion.
Last night was a bit different, several weeks ago we had been encouraged to apply for the Technology Startup of the Year Award, which we did. Now I don’t want to belittle other awards, but awards in the IT industry have become a bit of a cold marketing process and it’s uncanny that the winners have typically paid £5k for a table or have sold the most of the sponsor’s product. You know the awards I mean, you fill in a form, don a tux and turn up for your award – there are 4 finalists and there are gold, silver and bronze awards!
It dawned on me earlier this week when we were announced as a finalist, that being a start-up and gaining the initial recognition of an award is a very hard fought achievement. The format is also a lot tougher as we had to go through a live “battle” with three other very cool start-ups that were using cutting edge technology and had some great looking applications.
The event was in its seventh year and as we entered our battle arena we quickly appreciated that we were in a room of 140+ serious technical guys and entrepreneurs, there was no room for fluffing! Luckily as the inevitability set in the nerves died down, we delivered our pitch and answered a volley of questions from the judges probing our business.
Then an hour wait whilst the judges deliberated and then the euphoria of hearing “and the winner is … Onomi”.
So did we need to put ourselves through the wringer?, well no, but we are very pleased that we did as our talented technical team here absolutely deserve the recognition for all the hard work that has got us this far.
A big thank you to the event organisers and all the great support we had on the night.