Charlotte Pearce

Inkpact CEO & Founder. Age 24.

Please could you tell us a bit about Inkpact?

Inkpact is a tech start-up, which allows companies to go above and beyond for their customers by sending genuinely handwritten notecards, letters and personalised moments. We work with all sorts of people, for example mothers that are working from home to bring up their children, that are really great at handwriting and they’ll physically handwrite every single one of them and put them in the post-box for the company. So, before, it would be really difficult for a company to send thousands of birthday cards or thank you notes but now, thanks to our fantastic group of writers, they’re able to press a button and in a couple of days thousands of handwritten notes are going out to them.

Where did you get the idea to start Inkpact?

I came up with the idea completely by accident! I was at a personal development day and one of the people at the event said ‘I love sending handwritten letters – it’s okay if I have to send ten but if it’s a thousand I struggle’. So I said I think I’ve got a way that I can help you because I know lots of people with great handwriting. I literally started the company by saying I’ll charge you and I’ll pay the writers and lets see what happens… It completely escalated from there. I’d love to say it was a glamorous start to the company but it was actually just taking an opportunity that was there and making it happen.

Where do you find your confidence?

When I was younger I used to throw myself into situations where I had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing so I had to fake my confidence. Even at times when I didn’t feel confident I had to pretend I was which actually made me more confident.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

I think the best piece of advice I’ve ever been given is to work harder on yourself than you do on your job or your business. Working on yourself is really important because the better you understand your strengths and your weaknesses, the better you are at your job.

Putting yourself into the unknown is where you learn the most.
What’s the biggest risk you’ve ever taken?

Starting my company at 21 with no real world experience, no job and no money was quite a risky move – everyone thought I was being a little bit crazy! I remember people saying that I’d never make money out of hand written letters and telling me that I should go and get experience first. I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t taken that leap though. Putting yourself into the unknown is where you learn the most so it was a risk that was definitely worth taking.

Are there any downsides to running your own company?

I do get anxious and nervous about things. When you’re paying people’s salaries and you have to raise millions of pounds worth of investment it feels like a really big burden. I definitely have days when I think – how am I going to get out of bed this morning? And sometimes I just don’t… Sometimes you just have to take a day for yourself to watch Netflix or go for a long walk.