AMA: Will Stewart, founder of The Point.1888

Sometimes, traditional industries can be stuck in their ways, stifling creativity.

Then somebody like Will Stewart comes along and creates ThePoint.1888, a brand licensing agency with a difference.

In his interview, Will tells us how he’s shaken up his industry.

Will Stewart

Hey Will, let’s start by learning a bit about your company.

The Point.1888 offer the next generation of brand licensing.

Our industry has been around for decades but we have created a new methodology in our industry which has enabled us to disrupt for five years and now lead the market with a better way of working.  

Our method de-risks the entire supply chain and coupled with having the most committed, lovely and genuinely brilliant team we are taking our industry to new levels.

So, how did the idea for The Point.1888 come about?

I have always wanted to start a business as my family have done so before me. I wanted to start something that had low barriers to entry but was growing fast and needed a shakeup.  

We needed a clear USP to enable us to stand out so I spent three years at a competitor working out exactly what that would be.

What is your North Star metric and why is it so important?

We have three key metrics that help us track growth.

  • People – we are a business built on our people, their relationships and the network we can build.
  • Profits – we need to make profits to be successful as a business, we have no debt, are entirely self-funded and have been profitable since we started and this is something I am extremely proud of.
  • Premises – the environment we work from is extremely important to drive legendary (employee) happiness.  With our policy of ultra-flexibility, it is important that our HQ is a place the team WANT to come to rather than HAVE to come to.

Kudos to you. How would you describe your leadership style?

Open, honest and caring.  Leadership is about empowering, enabling, and inspiring the team and them always knowing that I always have their back.

point1888team

Love that. Can you share any practical tips or processes to help people work remotely?

Successful remote working can be summed up with trust, task and communication.  

We have operated ultra-flexibility since we started because work does not work in its old format – particularly for parents.  We allow our team to work whatever hours they want, from wherever they want with unlimited holiday.  

It works brilliantly despite everyone telling me it would not work.  It is not for everyone and requires an incredible amount of personal drive and commitment – something everyone needs in this new world order.

Wow, that sounds amazing! It’s funny how more freedom often equals more commitment. But with all that flexibility, how do you keep your team aligned?

By ensuring that the time we are able to be together is very efficient, well-prepped and executed effectively.  

We reward our team and highlight incredible performances in front of the team.  We provide true purpose for the whole team and allow them to nominate charities that mean something to them when we allocate 11% of our profits to charity each year.

celebrate

Do you have a share or option scheme in place for your team? 

No, not yet.

What do you look for in a candidate when hiring new people?

Honesty, loyalty, trust, the right attitude, ambition, humour, independence, loving, resilient and a good choice of favourite biscuit.

Favourite biscuit - that's a great interview question! What is the biggest mistake you've made as an entrepreneur?

Loads of small ones but no big ones.

And finally Will, what do you like to do outside of work?

I have four-year-old twins so between them and the business I do not have many hobbies.  My happy place is walking in the woods with my wife and we have committed to doing that once a month in 2021 with no other distractions.  

I love reading books but other than blocking time in my diary is not something I’ve done a lot of in recent years.

Thanks, Will, for a genuinely inspiring interview. The Point.1888 is a perfect example of the new wave of disruptive businesses.