Lucy-Rose Walker and Gayle Mann here! Over the last 7 years we have been involved in the start-up, growth, and eventual sale of Entrepreneurial Spark. At our peak we had 13 hubs across the UK supporting over 600 entrepreneurs at any one time. We have experienced our own “misadventures’ growing this business, as well as that of the 4000 entrepreneurs we worked with. No one seems to really talk about the realities of running you own business from an emotional perspective, so with our experience and that of others around us, we felt we wanted to share these stories. 

Lucy-Rose Walker

Foodie, introvert, boogie bouncer, book lover and self-development junkie. I live in the Spanish Hills with my husband and my doggie Belle, after deciding to do what most people wait until retirement to do and sold up our life in the Scottish rain to try living somewhere new (and sunny). So far, so good.

My inspiration comes from doing what I love which is supporting others to do what they love too, by finding breakthroughs in their own lives and supporting them when times are tough.

I’ve been an entrepreneur my whole life and I love it. It has taught me so much and pushed me through some crazy comfort zone barriers. I have also struggled with anxiety since I was 5 years old. I live with it - sometimes it takes me into a black hole with it and other times it takes me to places I could never have dreamed of going.

My perspective on life is that we’re all a work in progress so I’m always trying to work on balancing feeling guilty if I’m not always on the go, with taking time to be kind to myself.

When I’m not doing that I love walking in the hills with my dog, going trampolining or anything that involves food!

Gayle Mann

Extrovert, sports fan, travel junkie and wine and pizza enthusiast. I live in Glasgow with my partner Ruari and our wee Serbia semi-sausage rescue dog Mika.  

My obsession with entrepreneurs began with my dad having his own business when I was a child. Perhaps it was the fact that I was 4 and he told me that polar bears worked in his factory - but I was hooked from then on in (despite it always being their “day off” whenever I was there…) I didn’t know at the time but when my dad's business failed - it lit a fire in me that later became my career long mission to deeply understand and support the people behind the businesses.  

I used to think running marathons was a mental challenge - then I became an entrepreneur. Since then I fight a daily battle with what I now know to be imposter syndrome, which I mask with Chandler Bing style humour. Some days I win the battle and some days I get creamed by the inner gremlins - but I wouldn’t swap the personal growth challenge for anything now.  

My happy places are solving problems, mowing the lawn in perfectly straight lines, lifting weights, getting on a plane, or daydreaming about being able to play the piano one day.

Where the adventure began...

We began our acceleration journey in January 2012 opening our first accelerator in Glasgow, Scotland. Our vision was unique – rather than focussing on growing businesses, we believed that by focussing on developing the entrepreneurial mindset and behaviours of the people running the businesses, you can create more effective acceleration and growth. While we're still involved but in a hands off way, this ethos continues in the world the Entrepreneurial Spark does today - including their latest work to make entrepreneurial mindset acceleration open to all (which we think is very cool). Visit them below to get involved!