BACKEDISM

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BACKED INTERVIEWS

Angel Investor, BACKED Community

In his own words, Stuart is a former ‘startup’er’ (founding team at Comufy, sold to King.com, the team behind CandyCrush). He’s now an angel investor. He’s sector and geo agnostic, and has invested in ~80 companies to date.

🧰 | My first ever job…

I used to be a paperboy for Georgie Best (sadly, not the footballer), my local corner shop owner. Child labour at its finest…but the copious amounts of penny sweets we were given made it worthwhile.

The youth of today will never know the pain of getting up at 5:30am on a wet and cold December morning, to lug around a ridiculously heavy bag of the Sunday newspapers. …


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In the backyard with…Andy Shovel | Co-founder of ™ | Image McGill Collection

BACKED INTERVIEWS

Co-founder of

Andy is the co-founder of ™, the brand of plant-based meat alternative food products with industry-leading realism to meat in taste, appearance and texture. It’s unbelievably good.

🧰 | My first ever job…

I used to be one of those tedious clubbing photographers who would take a photo and then immediately thrust my ‘Capital VIP’ card into your hand, so you could go online and pay £3 to see how over-exposed I made your face in 2004 Photoshop.

🧠 | The last thing I geeked out about…

Just opened my phone’s browser and it was…how to use hydrogen peroxide to remove bleach stains from sheep-wool. Stayed at a friend’s flat last weekend and turns out that using ‘Vanish’ on a woollen rug really isn’t a thing. In case anyone’s wondering — you need to use a water/H2o2 mix, roughly 96% water. …


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BACKED INTERVIEWS

VP Global Community & Belonging Brandwatch, Founder & CEO Hustle Crew, BACKED Community

🧰 | My first ever job…

Technically my first invoice was for acting in a Radio 4 play whilst at school. It was so fun taking a day trip to BBC Maida Vale!

🧠 | The last thing I geeked out about…

! I just went down the Youtube rabbit hole hearing her take on how we’re all socialised to perpetuate inequality and discrimination. Watch .

🔎 | I want to learn more about…

Shame. I love I think it’s a real blocker for people when it comes to the work I do educating folks about privilege. And a blocker to creating authentic human connections. We all need to understand this powerful, uncomfortable emotion a lot more! …


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BACKED INTERVIEWS

Creative Director, Designer, BACKED Community

🧰 | My first ever job…

The first ever job I had was as an engineer in a hospital. I used to go around and fix whatever people needed. In my first week I was replacing a computer in an operating theatre when somebody got rushed in for surgery. I had to change into the scrubs and everything to keep working while they did their thing. I had just turned 17 too. It’s pretty difficult to care about installing Windows 7 Enterprise Edition when there’s a room full of doctors and nurses giving blood transfusions and emergency oxygen.

🧠 | The last thing I geeked out…


FROM THE BACKED PORTFOLIO

LabGenius is the first biopharmaceutical company developing next generation protein therapeutics using a machine learning-driven evolution engine (EVA™️). This story originally appeared on . Head there to find out more about their exciting work.

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Machine learning has the potential to provide huge value to drug discovery, in particular by reducing its failure rate and reversing the 60 year trend of decreasing R&D efficiency, as outlined in my previous post .

But let’s start with the basics of how drugs have been made until now. Given the current COVID-19 pandemic, you will probably have heard more about how drugs are developed than ever before, as well as some of the issues associated with it. Here, we’ll give an overview of drug development and also discuss what we need to consider in order to change — and massively improve — how this process is done. …


BACKED People & Culture Series

How to build a fair & inclusive recruitment strategy from scratch

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Perhaps let’s not ask these guys

Allow me to introduce myself: I’m a white woman with a Cambridge degree. (Q: How do you know if someone went to Oxbridge? A: Don’t worry, they’ll tell you). I tell you this not to brag, but to confess. You see, eighteen years ago, when I received my acceptance letter to study within those ivory towers, I believed in my heart that if a miner’s granddaughter from a single-income household in Glasgow could ‘do it’ through sheer determination and hard work (as I saw it), then anyone could. I was low on gratitude, ‘privilege’ was for toffs, and I didn’t yet understand that the now-embarrassing number of things I took for granted offered me unearned advantages. …


BACKED People & Culture Series

How to stress-test your values to create a meaningful, authentic culture

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“Culture”. It’s not just for hippies. (HLD/ASSOCIATED PRESS)

When I joined Backed in 2018, I was a refugee from the corporate world. I’d spent a decade or so working in traditional, grey-suit professional services outfits where hierarchy was king and the word ‘culture’ was for hippies. At interview, nothing showed me I wasn’t in Kansas any more quite so much as the frequency, and thoughtfulness, with which the Backed team talked about their values. They were mentioned in all of my six interviews. I was interrogated for my thoughts on each one. They were Blu-tacked to the windows of the corner they occupied in an East London co-working space (youth!). I heard that at one point, t-shirts were mooted. …


This story is by . She’s a BACKED Scout and founder of , a platform that helps you build a ‘lab’ for your mind with neuroscience-based content, coaching, and conversations.

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Thanks to the explosion of the SaaS industry and the proliferation in API-based software, it has become possible for one single person to run a company which used to require dozens of people across engineering, sales, and marketing.

Need to source leads, streamline the onboarding process, offer customer support? There is a SaaS for that.

This paradigm shift has given to a new class of entrepreneurs. Indie makers are solo entrepreneurs building profitable, bootstrapped and sustainable businesses. …


BACKED People & Culture Series

What are they and should you offer them to your employees?

This article is by . He’s a BACKED Scout and Founder/CEO of , a product to help you define and measure career growth for your team.

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Jonny Burch is a BACKED Scout and Founder/CEO of . Watch him talking about Parallel Tracks .

A lot of people who start using Progression, or who talk to us about setting up their progression framework, ask about whether they should have ‘parallel tracks’.

Broadly what they mean by that is: ‘should we have separate ladders for our managers and non managers?’

What’s quite typical traditionally is that you only have one ladder. …

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BACKEDISM

Notes and stories from the BACKED community.

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