"Enabling collaboration will achieve far greater, long-term results than driving competition"

Briony Phillips - Associate Director, Engine Shed

Briony is Associate Director and West of England Scaleup Enabler at Engine Shed. Briony champions the scaleup business ecosystem and helps overcome challenges faced by fast-growth companies such as access to investment. She runs a variety of organisational development projects for Engine Shed.

Briony’s career has spanned Deloitte Consulting, Teach First, the Open Data Institute and Lendlease in Australia. This ‘stacked portfolio’ approach to her career, known to her as ‘job shopping’ has enabled her to keep her passion for learning and leadership alive. Outside work, Briony has a particular penchant for baking and yoga and has recently completed a 3-year part-time Diploma in Nutritional Therapy.

VALUES-LED SCALEUP IMPACT

I spent my childhood and my formative years in Bath. After university in Nottingham, 11 years in London and a love affair with Australia, I chose to make Bristol my home 3 years ago (‘Sydney, but closer to home’ as one person described it). Initially, I continued my work as a freelance consultant which led to a meeting with Griff from Friska and thanks to him, an introduction to Nick Sturge. So, 2.5 years ago I joined Engine Shed as Scaleup Enabler for the West of England. When I interviewed for the role in Summer 2017, I couldn’t have imagined how well the region would reflect my values and how warmly I would be welcomed into the city.

The Scaleup Enabler role was an innovation. When it comes to supporting fast-growth companies, other regions of the country have prioritised relationship managers and programmes of support. In the West of England, we already have a vibrant support ecosystem so the challenge was clear: to work out what barriers negatively impact business growth, to raise awareness and understanding of them and to help the public and private sector to drive positive change. The unique environment at Engine Shed and, in the region, and the values that underpin many such initiatives in this city region have been crucial to the success of this project. I work on the belief that:

  1. According to the Cambridge English Dictionary, ‘an Enabler is a person or thing that makes something possible.’ That’s me.
  2. Transparency and storytelling are key, particularly with four partner organisations involved in the first year.
  3. Enabling collaboration will achieve far greater, long-term results than driving competition. Bringing people together will reduce duplication and facilitate connections.
  4. Being agile and responsive to information and opportunities, not beholden to a specific programme will deliver greater outcomes.
  5. Serendipity can be engineered.
  6. We value insights and intelligence that we gather on a par with outputs– we use metrics to illustrate the story, not to drive the activity.

Engine Shed

engine-shed.co.uk
+44 (0)117 903 1100
info@engine-shed.co.uk
Station Approach, Temple Meads, Bristol BS1 6QH

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