Member Profile Interview – Jamie Doak from Arc Steel
What was your first job after leaving school/further education?
Apprentice Blacksmith/Agricultural Engineer
When did you start your business & what prompted you to do it?
I started my business at the age of 26, money was the main driver for me to take the plunge.
What did you find most challenging at the beginning?
?Trying to find work and a bank to take me seriously. We never got any support from the bank until nearly 4 years into the business.
Who did you ask for advice & why did you choose them?
Business Gateway gave me all my initial help. ?We used them because at the time they were heavily advertising their services for new start ups which I noticed.
How did you fund your business?
I sold my car at the time and applied for a start up loan from PSYBT which we got. ?We received 5K which is what I used to set up.
What would you do differently now looking back?
?Nothing probably, I maybe should say that I would be patient and try to save a bit more money to have some funds behind me but being honest, I probably would not.
What or who has helped you to grow your business the most?
PSYBT has been great, we would never have got started if not for them so I owe them a lot. ?I am so driven and ambitious I have pushed the business forward to where we are now. ?Several people have been influential and enabled me to discuss my ideas with … Simon Howie, Bob Keiller and others.
What have been the biggest challenges you’ve faced?
Trying to fund my growth.
What are the future plans for your business?
To grow a multi national company. ?I want to be one of the country’s top steel fabrication business operating in all sectors offering exceptional customer service and the best quality products. ?I want to continue to grow my business until we operate in Europe and maybe even the rest of the world.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to set up their own business?
The words find something you really enjoy doing have never rung more true with me, the love I have for what I do has got me through some very dark times. ?If it was not for the fact I am so passionate about what I do I would not have come out the other side. ?So that?s my advice, ?first find your real passion for something, then look at it to see if it can make a business.
Tell us something about you that isn’t commonly known.
I love singing and dancing (not saying I am good but love it all the same)!
And finally, why did you join WeDO?
To meet more like minded individuals and to continue my networking. I love networking and have used this strategy a lot to help me grow.