Our Woman’s Power Hour profiles and celebrates women who are storming the short stay industry and this edition is showcasing the Gang Leader at GangHut a marketing agency which focusses on marketplaces and the platform economy.
How did you get into the short-term rentals industry?
As a journalist, I wrote an article about homesharing about 5 years ago for a broadsheet newspaper. It was quite a new phenomenon, the idea of renting out a room in your house on an online platform. That’s what started my interest in short term letting and the broader sharing economy.
How did you come to found your company and what were the biggest challenges you faced when setting it up?
GangHut came out of a PR company called RUDE which specialised in the sharing economy. The challenge was finding companies big enough, with a budget, in this space. GangHut evolved as sharing platforms got bigger, and we found that by offering a full marketing service, not just PR, we were able to capture a broader client base.
How do you intend to face the challenges within the industry as a company?
The short term rental industry has its challenges and the biggest one is that many people don’t trust it, and see it as unregulated and damaging. The right marketing can make a difference – by helping to educate, communicating the benefits, and building trust.
What is your advice for the next generation of leaders and change-makers?
Th platform economy has the potential to completely change the way we live our lives – for the better. So I would say, be open to that, be open to the positive changes technology can bring, and be open to starting again, and building completely new ideas.
How do you keep self-motivated?
I find it easy to motivate myself because every day I’m talking to entrepreneurs with amazing ideas. It’s inspiring and often humbling to be around such vision and passion. Motivating myself comes from a desire to be as inspirational as my clients are.
Biggest lesson you have learnt about yourself?
I think I’m more determined than I thought I would be before I became an entrepreneur. Some of this has come from my children – watching the way they just get on with it, and don’t give themselves the luxury of dwelling on mistakes, or navel gazing. They just try again. I’ve learned I can do that too, and it certainly helps in startup life.
Best piece of advice you were given?
“If it was easy, everyone would be doing it”. My husband says this to me a lot. He’s right – it’s not meant to be a smooth straight road. It wouldn’t be as much fun if it was!
Who is the individual you admire the most?
My daughter. She’s just eight but has a courage and resilience that blows me away.
Holiday destination of choice?
Italy is a bit of a spiritual home: my father taught me Italian when I was little and I love being there and chatting with the locals. Also, the food!
Your Favourite city in the world?
The ‘city of dreaming spires’ that I was born in, Oxford.
How do you celebrate your achievements?
I’m quite partial to a very large Italian white.
If you could run any company in the world what would it be and why?
GangHut! I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.
I’ve been enjoying Viv Groskop’s ‘How to own the room’ series for women public speakers.
What book would you recommend?
Kate Atkinson lives around the corner from me in Edinburgh and I adore her novels: ‘Life After Life’ just blew me away.
Want to feature in our Next Power Hour? Email Diane at email@example.com for your submission.