The Idea of PushMe was born in 2015. Dublin-based Philip Brophy was struggling in his sales role, he was behind target and he didn’t know how he was going to turn it around. Luckily though, at the time he was in the middle of completing his business and executive coaching qualification. He had access to some brilliant minds that were able to challenge his thinking, motivate him and push him to prioritise the specific things that could change his status quo.
It had a massive impact on his confidence and performance – he was able to completely turn his year around. After that, he thought, if we are going to spend one third of our lives in work why doesn’t everyone have access to a coaching service like this? How does he get this out to individuals and companies at scale?
Philip spent the next 6 years at Phonovation, a Deloitte Best Managed Company, learning the ropes on how to successfully run a business. He managed and significantly grew multimillion SaaS and Cybersecurity revenue lines. Prior to Phonovation, he worked in the medical diagnostic industry with Medical Supply Company (MSC) helping to attract and distribute some of the largest US and European healthcare brands into Ireland’s laboratories and pharmacies.
He soon learned that becoming an eternal student wouldn’t pay the mortgage, but that didn’t stop him achieving qualifications from Ireland’s leading business schools. His Business and Executive Coaching Diploma is complimented by a diverse educational background with a BSc in Chemistry, a Diploma in International Sales, and a Masters in Management.
What makes your business unique?
PushMe doesn’t look to compete with the likes of LinkedIn Learning or leadership programmes. Our digital coaching platform is designed to complement them. We help bridge the gap between learning new skills and applying them. Any professional development that requires individuals to change their behaviour requires some form of follow up and reinforcement to ensure the new knowledge is being applied. Our product is designed to do just that using research from the latest behavioural science.
How has Covid impacted your business? How do you expect things to unfold?
There has been a historic shift in the way we work and engage with each other. We know that attracting and retaining the right talent is one of the biggest issues facing companies at the moment. A positive employee experience is now becoming a top priority for leaders. We are lucky in the sense that our platform enables employees to thrive in the new hybrid work environment.
What is your greatest business achievement to date?
Taking the leap. I didn’t realise how hard that would be. I was working for a really progressive company under fantastic leadership so it was a really difficult decision. I regularly meet with other business owners and this is typically the first thing they congratulate me on.
What were the best and the worst pieces of advice you received when starting out?
The best piece of advice I received was around scalability. Whether you are launching a business or a new product, begin by finding a small group of customers that really value your service. Their feedback and ideas will help shape your product into something that is loved by many. I didn’t necessarily receive bad advice, but I did receive lots of it. Everyone was keen to offer their advice and ideas but at some point you just have to follow you own plan.
What is the most common mistake you see entrepreneurs make?
Spending their time and energy on things that don’t add value. The majority of time should be spent either talking to potential users or building the product. Attending conferences, entering pitch competitions and meeting advisors is great, but it doesn’t represent real progress. Talking to users and product iteration are the two metrics that can really move the dial in the right direction.