This time last week I was proud to be asked to return to network and meet with this years Shell Livewire finalists. I was a finalist in 2010 and remember how amazing it was just to be a finalist. It really gave me a sense of achievement, a tap on the back for getting at least past start-up and to trading, not to mention a few sherbets with the other finalists & a night in a nice hotel in Waterloo!

This year I plonked myself into a Go-Native in Mayfair & made my way down to the awards to see Bio-Bean, Fix-Flo & M-24 in action. With £10,000 up for grabs on the 21st I reminded a few finalists that it wasn't the be-all and end-all if they didn't win (it seemed to me that it could 'make' me or 'make' amber energy back in 2010 and that couldn't be further from the truth). A good idea is a long way from a sustainable drive to a mission or an end goal. Obviously easier said than done however!

My money this year was on Bio-Bean, the idea of recycling the waste from Coffee really hadn't been something that I had thought of before & it was great to see the passion behind the product.

Always a great night for remembering how it all started & keeping my feet firmly on the ground, also great for meeting new people & building a network. I was impressed with Alex Mitchell & I hope to develop a relationship with Young Brits from here.

One thing that struck me was the amount of energy in the room and the determination that everyone seemed to have to achieve; it's very different to what I remember from the workplace. Regurgitating something Alex' said "Entrepreneurs are our opportunity for growth and in building a successful nation" & I have to agree. Of course the ideas have to be good and we need to be growing the right opportunities but with the backing of schemes such as Shell Livewire, supporting, and mentoring us small businesses in the UK we can really make a difference to UK plc's bottom line.

Thanks to shell for a great event once again & the continued support to myself and fellow start-ups.