Updated: Nov 24, 2021
Continuing the founders series, this week Chief Marketing Office Joe Hennigan talks about brand building, idea aspirations and how Covid has affected the world of start-ups.
What is your exact role?
As Chief Marketing Officer I am responsible for the multiple aspects of our company, the first being running Receipt Relays social media channels. Here I design posts, engage with followers while also reaching out to new people whom I feel could benefit our company.
In addition to social media, I also design and run the company website (hopefully where you're reading this blog). With the help of Googles Skillshop I am building my knowledge of Search Engine Optimisation and Google Analytics to continue to optimise our website for potential customers and followers alike. Currently we are on the second build of our website, as a complete redesign was implemented in early 2021 which marked the beginning of our road to launch.
Finally as Co-Founder of Receipt Relay I am heavily involved in the running of the company with Sean, our other co-founder, and Luke our Chief Technology Officer. Together we each bring our own wealth of experience and knowledge to the table, moving Receipt Relay one step closer to your local checkout.
How did you get involved?
I have been involved in Receipt Relay since the very beginning, when Sean began building the team for the Fidelity International Fintech for Good Competition.
Together we created the idea of Deleit (now our company name) which originally allowed shoppers to use their mobile device as a scanner in shops. This would ultimately result in the receipt not being needed as the device would tally up your shop as you go. However, as the competition progressed, we pivoted this idea into Receipt Relay.
We brought this idea to the Dublin final where a panel of judges were convinced of its potential resulting in our victory and the beginning of our startup story.
What do you find to be the most important element of teamwork?
I find there are many key elements of teamwork, the obvious being communication. However, an often overlooked area of teamwork has to be having an open mind. When approaching challenges or obstacles as a team, each member must apply their knowledge and skills. This often results in a different approach from each member. Here is where a good team differentiate itself from a great one, as removing ego and keeping an open mind means everyone focuses on the solution to the problem, rather than their answer to it. This problem solving mindset can be summarised in a phrase,
"Create first, criticise later"
This phrase is one our team embodies at every challenge, and has allowed us to overcome every one we have met so far.
How did you adapt your schedule to the Covid-19 pandemic?
Covid 19 has rapidly changed the environment in which we all live and work. As Sean mentioned in our last blog, we were very fortunate that our organisation structure is based primarily online, with Skype calls being our main form of communication.
However the startup environment has changed rapidly as a result of covid. The most obvious which being the fact you can no longer offer a coffee as a conversation starter. All joking aside, the opportunity for meeting new people or customers has moved completely online as we find ourselves more reliant on LinkedIn and Slack to engage with new people. I see this as both a positive and a negative, as never before have so many people been only one click away, however this comes at the cost of not building an in-person relationship, but I could just be old fashioned.
What are your personal and business aspirations?
Receipt Relay will mark the beginning of the end for paper receipts in the world. I envision a future where the damage paper receipts inflict on the environment will be negated, allowing us to focus on other areas of the climate crisis that need to be tackled. I believe in tackling this issue in a positive way, rather than being critical of people for their harmful habits, instead offer them a better solution for both their personal lives and the health of the planet. In my mind Receipt Relay embodies this goal.
To achieve this goal, we will have to expand beyond the Irish shores and look to markets in the UK and further afield. While this may seem daunting to some, I have full faith in Receipt Relay and the team behind it to make this dream a reality.