Today Virgin Media Business is launching '#VOOM: Pitch to Rich 2015', a nationwide hunt for the most innovative and creative business people across the UK. Finalists will have the chance to pitch their idea to Richard Branson himself for a chance to win a share of a £1m prize pot - the biggest accelerator prize in British business history.
Mat's artistic career has included drawing cartoons, being a commercial artist, working in advertising and as a fine artist. However, his current passion is reinterpreting discarded materials he finds in second-hand shops, in skips and in walks by the river.
The problem is that without a shared narrative which combines the political and the economic, the public reacts to the positive jobs creation stories of 'in' and the negative job destruction stories of 'out' with responses like "They would say that, wouldn't they" and "it's just scaremongering".
Innovation is the lifeblood of any brand and failure to innovate only leads to failing as a business. Google could quite easily take their foot off the gas and simply boss the internet for a decade or two before bowing out to a new upstart, but they will never rest on their laurels - and that's the key. Never sit still. You're never too big to fail.
How did a high tech startup, headquartered in Scotland's historic capital, become the global travel gateway it is today? And how does it maintain that startup culture, seemingly so crucial to its success, now that it is much more than a dream etched on a beer mat?
You know that feeling you get when someone presents you with an amazing opportunity to present and sell your course, class or program and part of you is like YES! But as you picture the scene in your head the sense of jubilation begins to fade.
We're always told to delegate wisely - it's the sign of success - so take it to the modern platforms and flourish by using freelancers who live, breathe and love their niches. It's a win-win relationship, with no commitment required.
If you are a leader, believe me when I say that by embarking on the elevating leadership journey, you will not only quickly see changes in your teams; higher levels of engagement, more inspired cultures and better business results. You will all also be having more fun and live happier lives.
Be sure to think carefully about these three aspects when you're looking to sell and don't just take the first offer you get. You built this business from the ground up - exit with the confidence that it's in good hands and will continue to be something you're proud of...
Would be great to see health, arts and the public sector take this open approach to ideas too. Business brains, go forth!
Prioritising employees' physical and mental wellbeing is really important. Aside from generally caring about colleagues' health, a healthy office actually helps to increase productivity and can even reduce absenteeism.
Business may see some short term gain, but they could also endure long-term pain by exacerbating future talent shortages (which they are struggling with already) and diminishing the value of the British consumer base. The emergence of a poorly-skilled millennial generation will only serve to magnify the challenges we see in our society today.
We all have pity parties from time to time but some of us stay way too long in them, letting every obstacle hold us back, feeing even sorrier for ourselves as time goes on. As a result, we don't move forward the way we would like in our businesses.
Interestingly there's more of a Christian cultural overlay in America, yet the Christian faith in the UK still has more of an influence - so you'll get the Archbishop of Canterbury quoted on the evening news talking about economic issues, something you'd never get church leaders doing in America.
Being strong sadly means I cannot tolerate weakness in others. This is a poor trait and inconsiderate at best but it's no good pretending otherwise. If I can be strong I just can't understand why you can't be the same.
It's a natural state of affairs; all technology adoption is on a bell-curve: you have early adopters 'ahead of the curve' and late adopters who wait until it becomes almost essential. Let's take a look at some of the industries who very much on the late adoption side of the curve for social media.