Ten Questions with an Entrepreneur: Andrew Jervis Founder and CEO of ClickMechanic
MEC: Hi Andrew, thank you for joining us for the first Entrepreneurs@Manchester of 2022! Firstly, tell us what course you studied at The University of Manchester and what were your motivations behind studying this degree?
Andrew Jervis: I received a Master of Enterprise (MEnt.) from the Masood Entrepreneurship Centre, Alliance Manchester Business School. Having studied a more generic business degree for my bachelors and having worked for a couple of years post my bachelors, I knew I wanted to dedicate my life to entrepreneurship and the MEnt. was completely unique and exactly what I was looking for.
MEC: Tell us more about your time at The University of Manchester and your motivations behind starting your business
AJ: Studying at Manchester was incredible on a number of levels. Firstly the Alliance Manchester Business School and the Masood Entrepreneurship Centre were first class in terms of quality of courses, teaching and facilities. Every lecture was genuinely very exciting for me. Furthermore, coming to Manchester was my first taste of living in a major city which was very exciting in terms of the opportunities that opened up for me during my time. In terms of the motivation to start ClickMechanic, I first had the idea while at the University and entered and won the Venture Out (now known as Bright Ideas) competition. From there I then went onto write my Masters thesis on the problems that existed within the car repair industry and models to alleviate them and the rest as they say is history!
MEC: Wow, you managed to get involved with all sorts of activities during your studies! How did you juggle a demanding degree with starting up and running your business?
AJ: It was a massive challenge and in hindsight I definitely took on too much but it taught me a valuable lesson about the importance of focusing and having a bigger impact in fewer areas. Having said that essentially I just worked really damn hard. Long hours, late nights and working weekends! But often it did not feel like work so I really enjoyed it and was lucky enough to leave with a distinction and the embryo of two businesses with ClickMechanic and PieBoy Clothing!
MEC: Did you face any barriers to starting up? If so how did you overcome those?
AJ: As an entrepreneur and founder of a start-up the odds are immediately stacked against you as most start-up companies fail. Companies can fail for a huge variety of reasons from cash flow issues, not solving a big enough problem, lacking the right expertise and so many more. In the same way as I tackled balancing my degree with starting a business I tackled the barriers of starting up by just working extra hard. Working evenings, weekends and not giving up. A fear of failure can be a positive thing and channelling that energy into surviving and then thriving was really important.
MEC: Has developing entrepreneurial skills helped you in your career/degree?
AJ: 110%... Essentially I am entrepreneur in terms of starting and growing businesses so to be able to develop and harness entrepreneurial skills is vitally important to make a success of building such companies.
MEC: You’ve recently been awarded Start-up Business of the Year, Congrats! What are your aspirations for ClickMechanic?
Thank you! We have a clear vision for ClickMechanic which is about making car care easy for everyone everywhere. In terms of what this means in practice we’re dedicated to the customers on our marketplace to make everything about maintaining their car easy and when it comes to the mechanics who are on our marketplace we want to make it as easy as possible for them to build and manage their own businesses.
MEC: What do you enjoy most about being an Entrepreneur?
AJ: Making a positive impact in the world. Being an entrepreneur is about solving problems and delivering value and if you can do that people will join you, back you and support you to do amazing things. We’re lucky to have such a great team, great customers and great partners who have joined us on a journey to make car care easy!
MEC: What does “Entrepreneurship” mean to you?
AJ: For me great entrepreneurship is about bringing positive change and impact to people and the world we live in!
MEC: Any hotspots or tips for potential students looking to study in Manchester?
AJ: Embrace the city! I lived for two years in Manchester and absolutely loved it. It's diverse, creative, friendly and affordable. I got so much out of my two years there but I probably only got as much as I did by throwing myself into as much as I could. So my one tip to potential students looking to study at Manchester is to take advantage of as many of the opportunities presented to you as possible!
MEC: Finally, What Advice would you give to a student or recent graduate looking to start up alongside their degree?
AJ: Tough question! Start by reading “The Lean Startup” this will give you an incredible framework for building your business. Next, be prepared to work exceptionally hard if you want to make it a success and finally try to enjoy it! You won't enjoy every day and some you will find incredibly hard but it’s an incredible journey with so much to learn along the way so enjoy those days where things feel like they are falling into place.
Entrepreneurs@Manchester with Andrew Jervis, Founder and CEO of ClickMechanic
Andrew Jervis was speaking as part of the Entrepreneurs@Manchester speaker series organised by the Masood Entrepreneurship Centre. Entrepreneurs@Manchester invites the UK's leading entrepreneurs to The University of Manchester to share their insights and talk candidly about their highs, lows, and lessons learnt. These are real stories from those who have done it - from initial concept through to enterprise.
Keep up to date with ClickMechanic across social media IG: @Click_Mechanic Twitter & Facebook: @Click Mechanic And tune into our next E@M talk by checking out our events page.