In this episode, I got into a conversation with Conor Lynch, a 21-year old artist-entrepreneur. He discusses his interest in woodturning projects, how his parents agreed to him starting a business when he was just 11 years, how participating in the Junior Dragon’s Den changed the way he thinks about his business, the challenges he’s faced being a student, and an entrepreneur.
Who is Conor Lynch?
Conor Lynch is a woodturner based in County Offaly, Ireland. Now in his Final Year of a Mechanical Engineering degree in NUI Galway, he splits his time between running his business and studying for his degree.
At the age of 11, Conor had his first experience of woodturning, by making a candle holder in a woodwork class. After this experience, he invested his confirmation money in a woodturning lathe.
Conor designs and handcrafts all of his products in his workshop in Offaly. He sells through his own online shop, as well as various online outlets and physical shops in Ireland and Canada. In 2014, Conor was featured on “Junior Dragons Den”, where he pitched his business to 5 of Ireland’s most successful businessmen and women. He secured the €2000 bursary and mentoring from Dragon Peter Casey.
Conor is passionate about student entrepreneurship and is the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Blackstone LaunchPad in his University, National University of Ireland, Galway. Occasionally, he also gives talks to primary, secondary, and 3rd level students about his experience of being a student entrepreneur.
Why Should You Listen to Conor Lynch?
There are plenty of reasons why you should listen to Conor Lynch. Let me give the top 3:
- He started doing a business when he was 11 years old. He talks about the conversations he had with his parents to convince them to let him pursue his interests.
- Conor appeared on Junior Dragon’s Den and talks about the experience inside the den. It’s not about the money, but about what he learned inside that will change the way you think about business or in general, being productive.
- He genuinely discusses his predicament, as he graduates from college and also has a business going. It’s human to think that way, and you should definitely listen to it.
What Does He Talk about in this Interview?
Here are some topics and questions we cover in this interview!
- Give me a sense of what’s going on in your head about your career and life, at the moment?
- What is entrepreneurship? What do you like about entrepreneurship so much that you still think that you want to keep doing it?
- Woodturning is pretty hard. What did you like about making woodwork that you decided to not do something else?
- Can you give me a sense of how the conversation went when you come back from school and talk to your parents about your interests?
- What happened then? Did you just go ahead and buy a lathe? How did you get started?
- When was it that you decided that this was more than a hobby and going to be a business?
- You are good at your studies and have built a business. What’s your secret to finding this balance?
- Who do you end up spending most of your time with?
- Can you give me a sense of how you felt and what you felt standing in front of Dragons in the Junior Dragon’s Den?
- How did you go about picking the product you wanted to design? Has this changed over time?
- What’s the customer buying pattern in a business like yours? Do you have repeat customers?
- What makes you think that quality is more important than quantity?
- Who has had a big influence on you as you grew up? Are you like this in other areas of life too? Very clear.
- Describe the moment when you met Barry again after 3 years at Transition Year Startup Academy
- In rough and tough times, who do you look up to for advice?
- What has been the best advice you received from your father or mother?
How Can You Listen?
Conor Lynch’s interview is available in audio.
Direct Link to Audio
How to Get In Touch with Conor Lynch?
Conor Lynch on Junior Dragons Den
Supported for This Show
This show is brought to you by Thrive Membership from Thrive Themes. Think about this. Back in the early 2000s, a lot of creative business owners started using Myspace to showcase their work and also grow their businesses. Jim, was one of them.
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