Oli Christie, CEO of Neon Play
Moon Consulting meets Oli Christie, CEO of Cirencester based Neon Play, who have been busy creating world famous mobile game apps since 2010. Oli shares his experience as an award-winning entrepreneur explaining some of the challenges he's faced along the way.
It is immediately apparent that Oli has learnt a lot through taking Neon Play from a start-up, to their acquisition in 2016 by publishing giant, the Hachette group. Oli enthuses about the value of having a business partner, "as it can be lonely setting up a company on your own and so it is invaluable to have someone to bounce ideas off and to share the highs and lows".
Oli also encourages fellow entrepreneurs to seek out mentors as they can bring a wealth of experience and knowledge, "don't be shy of approaching potential mentors, people don't mind being asked to mentor as it's flattering".
Hearing Oli enthuse about the value of mentors resonates with Moon Consulting, as both Simon Quinn, Head of Search, and Vanessa Moon, Director, are both mentors on the Entrepreneurial Spark programme, advising start-ups and high growth businesses.
Our conversation turns to hiring strategies and Oli and I agree that being focused during the process is critical, "One piece of advice I would give to fellow entrepreneurs starting out is to hire the very best staff that you can afford at any given time" Oli says, adding, "If you think someone is a 'maybe' then they are a 'no'". Oli stresses the importance of getting the right people, that can support your aspirations commenting, "bring in experts for the work that you don't enjoy or you're not good at, because you're better using your skills to focus on what will drive and grow the company". Indeed, to help support decision making, as search experts in our field, the team at Moon Consulting are often asked to provide an independent sounding board at Client Panel interviews.
Getting the right people with the critical expertise needed, and convincing them to base themselves in a Cotswold town, has been an on-going challenge which Oli has sought new solutions for. "The environment that you work in is important - the workplace doesn't have to be dull and boring. We want the building we work in to be creative, stimulating and fun, a place that people want to come and see". Oli believes that you need to stand out as "the top companies are finding it hard to recruit because there is a limit to the very best talent available in a growing market". Being able to track talent in a specific sector is an area that Moon Consulting has increasingly been asked to do for our Clients - this model allows us to identify up and coming thought leaders for many of our high growth businesses. Indeed, our long-term relationships and company knowledge help ensure our clients stay one step ahead of the competition.
Oli's drive has led him to rally and secure support for the Rock theCotswolds initiative which champions 'rockers'; "people, companies, events, venues, anything that is rocking the Cotswolds", whilst also successfully raising the profile of local businesses. So, as I leave Neon Plays' studio, I reflect on their impressive achievements - the Queen's Award for Innovation, being named Entrepreneur of the Year at the UK Chamber of Commerce Awards, launching over 30 mobile games and notching up over 60 million downloads.
There is no doubt that innovations in the technology sector remain as exciting as ever with businesses such as Neon Play. If you are looking to hire your next senior management or board level executive and wish to explore Moon Consulting's own innovative approach to identifying the best talent in the technology sector, then get in touch with us today.
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