Entrepreneurs getting start-ups up and running tend to focus on developing a great product, delivering superior customer experience, and raising funds. They want to be seen as innovative, and ensure their entrance in the marketplace is heard loud and far.

However, some things are easily overlooked in the rush to market and to scale. Uber may be known for slick customer experience, but it has also gained a reputation for poor governance and overly aggressive behaviour.

Amidst Apple-like secrecy followed by massive hype, Theranos promised a revolutionary product but came undone as journalists and medical professionals questioned the veracity of its claims. 

Up-and-coming digital bank Revolut stated mission was to ‘get sh*t done’. It  ditched the catchphrase as soon as it came under fire for a slew of governance issues

In today’s transparent and connected world, investors, the media and competitors are on the lookout for overstated abilities and unrealistic projections, for chinks in the product armour and poor behaviour.

Employees quickly leave if they feel they are over-worked, underpaid and that there is no real vision, and can easily share their experiences on the internet and on social media.

In this far-reaching and insightful presentation, Charlie Pownall draws on his experiences working for and advising start-ups to set out what new, early-stage companies and micro-business must consider seriously – and act upon – as they emerge into the public spotlight.