MKBLP Member Q&A – Stuart Goldwater, Managing Director, PragmatiQ Solutions Ltd
Stuart Goldwater joined MKBLP as a member last year. Stuart is Managing Director and Co-Founder of PragmatiQ Solutions Ltd, a company which specialises in designing and developing Bespoke CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems and Custom Databases for clients to solve business challenges. We asked Stuart a few questions on his decision to join MKBLP:
1. Why being a member is important?
After setting up our business in Milton Keynes, we were impressed with how well-connected businesses seemed to be and, through the community, we heard about MKBLP. As a new company, we were keen to raise our profile and forge professional associations, however we were particularly taken with the fact that MKBLP provides more than just an opportunity to network, the events are very relaxed, and the calibre of speakers are always fantastic.
Also, it is very positive to see so many different sized companies, across a broad range of industries, represented at the events.
2. What do you bring to MK Business Leaders?
Since we have landed in Milton Keynes, we have ingrained our business and taken a keen interest in the development of the city. From connectivity, parking and planning. Our business objective is to build long-lasting relationships to deliver success for our clients, and we believe that by cultivating business to business connections we can also add value in linking up other businesses, charities, professional associations and help the city prosper.
3. What challenges face the Milton Keynes business community?
The city has ambitious growth plans, particularly in business and innovation. However, we need the right infrastructure in place to support this growth. For instance, parking is still an issue and while there is alternative transport available, more will be needed as the city continues to grow. While there are many restaurant chains in Milton Keynes, there is a need for a hub of independent restaurants and bars within the inner city to attract and retain young talent. Inspiration needs to be taken from other large cities which have streets offering a large concentration of independent restaurants, bars and shops. The opening of MK:U will further exacerbate this as we need to ensure we have the right social offering to attract students and encourage them stay and develop their careers within Milton Keynes.
However, at this time of writing it should be noted, with the above in mind, that these are clearly strange times and once the world has gone back to some sort of normality (whatever that normal will be), it will become apparent what changes that we were forced to make were only short-term, and what changes are here to stay. At that point a review of the objectives for the city and strategy to achieve these goals, will need to be reviewed.
4. What makes Milton Keynes special for you?
Milton Keynes marked the central point between my home and my business partner’s home, so while it made geographical sense, the decision to embed our business here ran deeper. We were aware that there was a vibrant business community, the transportation links to the Midlands, London, and the Oxford & Cambridge Arc connection held great appeal and the potential for growth was clear. While we viewed the vast number and variety of businesses within Milton Keynes as an opportunity to grow our company, we were struck by the inclusivity of the city’s business community and the fact that it didn’t feel at all clique.
5. Your tip for success in business and/or life?
There is no substitute for hard work. In this age of social media, Millennials and Gen Z are impatient and want to take short cuts to success as they take false inspiration from influencers on Instagram. However, this is a false perception of reality and those who wish to succeed need to set out realistic expectations, hunker down, work hard and put the time in to grow their business organically.