I set up my business in lockdown

Cleidi Hearn tells us about her new business, Sunny Numbers, an Irish edtech startup
I set up my business in lockdown

Cleidi Hearn, Founder Sunny Numbers

Name: Cleidi Hearn

Age: 37 

Lives: Douglas, Cork City.

Job title: Founder of Sunny Numbers, an Irish edtech startup. We develop mobile games to help you to learn statistics and maths.

Salary bracket: My business is still in the pre-revenue stage.

Education background: I have recently graduated with first class honours in Applied Psychology in UCC. Previously, I graduated in Philosophy.

Hobbies: I enjoy reading academic books and watching space documentaries. I also love listening to podcasts, especially the ones about entrepreneurship and the startup world.

Describe your job in five words: Fulfilling, intense, exciting, energising, creative.

Describe yourself in five words: Resilient, resourceful, disciplined, honest, ambitious.

Personality needed for this kind of work? My work as a startup founder requires patience, focus and flexibility. It is also important to know how to create and nurture great relationships with people.

How long are you doing this job? I founded my business during the first lockdown in July 2020.

How did you get this job? I applied for a student entrepreneurship programme during my final year in college at UCC. Once I graduated, I was already hooked in entrepreneurship and decided to create my own job.

Before moving to Ireland, I worked as a philosophy teacher in Brazil, where I'm originally from.

Do you need particular qualifications or experience? You don't necessarily need a degree to become an entrepreneur. There are plenty of self-made entrepreneurs in the world. However, it is important to stay updated with your industry and surround yourself with mentors to support you along the journey.

Describe a day at work: The first thing I do before work is to make a nice cup of black coffee (I blame my Brazilian heritage!). After that, I normally work from 8am until 6pm. My days are currently filled with online meetings with my team members and working on product development. I also take time to attend webinars and connect with other founders.

How many hours do you work a week? I don't count. I work as many hours as I need to get things done.

What do you wear to work? My wardrobe is quite casual. Jeans, t-shirts, trainers and a headband.

Is your job stressful? How? Rate it on a scale of 1-10: It can be. Especially when you are starting a company as a sole founder, things may get overwhelming from time to time. However, this is part of the thrill and we learn very quickly how to delegate and ask for help. If I had to rate the stress levels, I would say my job is an 8.

Do you work with others or on your own? I am currently working from home but I have a small remote team helping with different aspects of the business.

When do you plan to retire or give up working? I don't think I will. I am pretty sure I will always find something to do.

Best bits: Creating products that will make a genuine impact in people's lives. Sharing the joys and trials of entrepreneurship with my team and advisors.

Worst bits: Occasionally neglecting enough physical activity. I am particularly struggling now during lockdown.

Advice to those who want your job? Fall in love with a problem and do whatever you can to find a solution. Entrepreneurship is not about a glamorous lifestyle and how much money you make. It is about serving others. It is about using your brain and energy to find solutions that will leave a positive impact in the world.

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