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Case study


Bringing experts on board to identify the gaps in your business

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Rushab Shah decided to seek out the support of the Be the Business, after struggling with app development, bringing in the right people and setting up a solid business structure.

TutorHive aims to revolutionise the accessibility of private tuition. The platform has an algorithm to help provide the best and most affordable learning experience, whether it’s for an A-Level maths exam or to pass the 11+ test.

However, while the business is thriving now, it wasn’t always plain sailing. TutorHive launched to positive feedback, but Rushab quickly discovered that there were some holes in the business that meant he struggled to think strategically in the long term. This is when he sought out the Be the Business Boards programme.

What we struggled to do is set up the structure to think about things a little bit more than just the week to week. You can’t expect instant gratification, even if you want to put something out and have it work immediately. As an entrepreneur, you have to step back from that and realise things take time.

The power of an outside perspective

When you’re working in the weeds of your business, it can be hard to visualise things from a top-level perspective. There are always new areas you need to prioritise or fires to fight, which leaves little time to step back and think about the business holistically.

With a relatively new business, Rushab was keen to have an outside perspective that forced him to question decisions and ensure he was putting the right foundations in place.

“We’re still trying to find our business culture and how we operate. There were all these big challenges where we realised we needed someone or a group of individuals with real-world experience who can say, ‘hang on, what are you doing?’. So the rationale was, can we look to add a bit of structure?” he said.

Bringing the right people on board

One of the first challenges Rushab wanted help with was recruitment. The first few dozen hires can be critical to building the right culture, so there’s pressure to make sure that anyone who gets involved is the right fit.

Rushab spent his first Board meeting discussing how to bring talent into the business and effective ways of finding people.

We got some really interesting feedback from people who've hired hundreds of people. One of the Board members was also a HR and change management-type person too.

It was a conversation we’ve never really had access to about how we approach recruitment and what bits could work for a startup, which doesn't have the scale to go out and hire recruitment agencies,” he said.

Rushab admits that his team can sometimes be “headless” without longer term plans, so the Board also gave him practical actions to put clearer weekly structures in place.

“It ultimately led to us deploying things, like our internal project management tools. So now our onboarding process for new hires is that they're all on the same platform, and everyone's got visibility and access to the right information. We use monday.com, so it’s all structured better and the tasks are all in there,” Rushab said.

While there are occasionally times he’ll slip back into old habits, the Board has given Rushab accountability. As he puts it, he’s learned about what he should be doing rather than “just running the business on what’s happening”.

A broad spread of individuals

One of the biggest benefits of the Board is the range of individuals involved. Rushab’s Board includes a financial CEO and someone who heads up AI and machine learning for a major consultancy company.

“Where we’ve shared challenges in raising investment and corporate structure through to tech and product development through to recruitment, the Board was matched to bring someone with that sort of background. So the Board itself has a spread of individuals who actually aren’t in the same sector. It’s great, because it gives us the parallels to apply,” he said.

The experience has also inspired Rushab to tap into more outside experience and bring in an advisor who has experience in the education sector.

The Board has been pretty impactful, and it’s only been one session! The structure has been set up in a good way – I think Be the Business does try to take what you request or your challenges and match the Board accordingly.

Looking for support for your business’s challenges? Be the Business aims to inspire leadership teams to create and deliver greater productivity. Find targeted business support here.

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