Over the past month, we’ve been searching for inspirational people who have setup their own online companies, with a view to interviewing them. At Pinpoint Designs, we work with companies who are already established in addition to companies who are just starting out. We want to try and inspire people to come to us with new and exciting projects, so please share this article with your friends and family!
Xenios is the Founder and CEO of PeoplePerHour (PPH), a site that aims to put freelancers in touch with customers via a simple to use system. PPH was founded in 2007, and currently has over 400,000 active members! It’s fair to say that Xenios knows a thing or two about marketing and done a brilliant job with his company!
So Xenios, what did you do before you launched PPH?
Before I launched PPH I ran another business, and I noticed how hard it was to hire freelance talent quickly and easily. It simply didn’t exist. I realised there was a huge gap in the market and PPH was born!
What has been your biggest stand out moment?
I guess the biggest stand out moment in my business career so far was when the financial meltdown happened in the UK. At the time we were at the final stages of raising Venture Capital money. We had about 2 months of runway, and then Lehman Brothers announced bankruptcy. The world ended. The VCs disappeared. And we needed to figure out how to survive and raise funds in just 8 weeks. It wasn’t pretty.
But , what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. I think that experience was probably my highlight, it sounds a cliche but its so true, its what you do when you’re down that defines you and shapes you. I dropped everything, focused relentlessly on fundraising, persisting and persevered till we pulled off the impossible. Raising funds in the worst time in history with very little traction at the time. I remember the feedback from the guy who wrote us the cheque at the time, a guy I didn’t know up until then (in fact feedback that’s still on my LinkedIn profile) It was grit and tenacity that got him. So the lesson was, regardless of everything else – stay focused and move forward not wavering from your goal.
What advice would you give someone just starting out?
My advice for someone who is thinking of setting up a their own business would be: fight for everything. If you believe in your business then don’t be disheartened if others don’t. However, don’t be blinkered if something isn’t working.
Be willing to listen to advice and be agile enough to change direction if it makes sense. It doesn’t mean you have to start from scratch, but sometimes you might have to try a few different paths before you discover the right one. Learning from your mistakes and accepting when something isn’t working are vital components of being a successful entrepreneur. And when you do find the right path, then go all in!
What is next for you?
What’s next? The continued growth of PPH of course 🙂 What inspires me to continue to grow is the impact we have in the world. As I frequently remind my team, at PPH we serve a purpose that is grander than our own. We help people start businesses, we help them pursue their dream of financial independence, working flexibly in the way they prefer. We help them build their business from the ground up.
Xenios is a perfect example of how you can grow a company from the ground up with hard graft and dedication! We’re always happy to help and listen, so If you’d like to discus a website design project with us, you can contact us using the links above.
We hope you’ve found this interview interesting and we’d really appreciate it if you can share it on Twitter and Facebook! We’ll be back in a couple of weeks time with another interview!