Crowd-Sourced Funding for Breweries - How to preserve your purpose as a founder
In continuation of his Crowd-Sourced Funding (CSF) for Breweries series, Mark Hubbard, an OnMarket Campaign Manager, brewery founder and former brewery owner, chats with Jayne Lewis, co-founder of Two Birds Brewing and industry legend, about support for Founders in its various forms.
Jayne, thank you so much for your time, I am very excited to speak with a bona-fide star in our sector. We have a bit in common, I am pleased to say. We both founded a brewing business and created its brand image, making our dreams become a reality. We both went through the emotional journey of selling our interests in the business we founded, leaving our “babies”, and moving on to a new chapter.
And now we both remain involved in the brewing sector by providing support to Founders – in my case, through OnMarket, providing innovative equity solutions to Founders to provide the capital to achieve their ambition. In your case, through your business Full Colour Life, providing consulting and coaching to Founders to ensure they operate at their full potential. Plus, we both enjoy the company of our dogs when working from home!
Tell me more about Full Colour Life.
“Primarily, it is about helping people grow, to find what they are passionate about and to find the purpose in what they are doing. Helping them connect with their passion and find fulfilment. It is about making sure that people can paint their life in full colour! Coaching, mentoring, training and advocacy are all methods which I use to do this.
I am working with founders, where I have lived experience. I know how taxing and heavy the weight of that experience can be and my hope is to work with founders to support them through that journey, to remind them why they are there and what their vision and passion is. I find that these things can become obscured over time. And also, this has follow on effects to their team, to their families, as well as providing the energy and emotional capacity to focus on their business and initiatives such as equity funding.
I recognise that if you are looking for funding, you are probably at a pretty stressful part of your cycle, and what we do at Full Colour Life is provide coaching and tools to deal with events and tensions like this.”
That resonates with me a lot. What I sometimes felt in my own experience, and what I see now with some founders working with OnMarket, is that you may have a great vision with a burning passion to achieve it but you may need capital and coaching to get there. It can be quite scary to deal with those needs and the consequences of failing to do so adequately.
You may think you could lose control of the business or have shareholders derail your plans or even lose control of your emotions and make bad business decisions. So it is good to know that there are resources available to founders to assist with this – us!
What are your thoughts on this, Jayne?
“When you have nurtured your business, your “baby”, and tied your identity to it, and it to you, it can be very emotional when you invite other shareholders in. Logic tells you that certain benefits are achieved by certain actions, and if you need capital to reach your potential and achieve your goals, certain actions must be taken. But the logic of it doesn’t insulate you from the feelings that you get from doing it, or even considering it! There is a lot more wrapped up in it than just the business side of things. My focus at Full Colour Life is on the human aspect of going through such processes.
There was a time in my journey when I was hyper stressed, burnt out, overwhelmed and lost, not knowing why I was doing what I was doing – I forgot my purpose. I had a lot of great support to help me deal with this professionally. From that experience, I realised that there was a need amongst founders and the brewing community for similar assistance. I know that even with that support, it is still super stressful.
Sometimes you can easily get lost in the weeds. You get sucked into the day to day, doing things that need to be done, putting out fires, doing what is in front of you, doing stuff you don’t want to. You forget why you are doing this, why did you start it. Now you’re doing it so you can pay all the people and try to keep your customers happy. That is why you continue to do it, and now you are in a cycle. This bloody well isn’t what you had in mind when you started!”
Jayne, you are so talking about me! My family first policy, my ski or cycle everyday policy, my work life balance that were all so integral to starting my own business each fell by the wayside quickly, and it became business first and last.
I was the one making deliveries, doing sales calls, packaging the beer, serving customers and so many other things that I was effectively being held hostage by my business. It had its rewards, but it wasn’t why I opened the business nor the purpose I had in starting it. It certainly wasn’t the highest and best use for my skills in the brewery either.
“I know, right?! And then the question that needs an answer becomes - how do I bridge that gap between where I am and why I started? Can coaching and mentoring help provide answers? Can investments in people and processes help restore the balance?
Exactly. So often, capital investment is thought of in terms of things. I need to buy stuff to make more stuff. But maybe it should be thought of more often in terms of objectives, people, skills. What investments can a founder make so that the role they envisaged for themselves can more readily be carried out?
Maybe founders should ask themselves how can I invest in the business to ensure I don’t get sucked into the vacuums that exist, that I stay in my lane, reach my objectives and don’t get side-tracked by the things that I can get good people to do. What investments can be made in objectives, people, processes, systems to ensure I can find my purpose again and make the business better off for it?
“And that is such a good approach to optimize the business, provide returns and ensure a founder lives their purpose.”
Jayne, thank you so much for exploring these topics with me, and best of luck with Full Colour Life. When I think back to my often-lonely times as a founder on top of a mountain in the Victorian High Country, I know I could’ve benefitted from your insights and the support you offer. I think what you are doing is gold.
If you too think that your journey as a founder could benefit from support with the human aspects of your situation, contact Jayne at email@example.com. Let her help you find fulfilment and re-discover your purpose.
And if you need to raise capital to invest in objectives that could help you re-discover your purpose, CSF could be for you. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org – let us help you fund your ambition.