I am Lewis Windle, 24, born in Essex. I setup Kensington Group FZ LLC when I left my first job in the tech industry at Causeway Technologies Ltd. Where I was fortunate enough to learn from some incredible people.
What gave you the idea to start Kensington Group? How did you get into it?
Initially it was my drive to overtake my colleagues, who were earning fortunes in working in sales selling software solutions to corporations all over the world. I wanted to not just be a sales person but to own the software and own the products.
I pitched for investment to my father & his business partner Steve Harrison who both work in the financial markets. I was able to raise 300,000 US Dollars to setup hire and formulate the business in Dubai with software Partnerships as a re-seller. It became very clear that the SME market in Dubai was not being serviced for HR software as large Vendors bypassed the smaller contracts. It was then I started to think of how I could take over this part of the market. With the acquisition of WM Lab Pvt in India I was able to very quickly own a full blown HRM system that was converted and adapted to launch as a SaaS application in the UAE market.
How many software solutions have you now got? What is it like running a tech business?
Currently under our holding company we have 3 different HR systems, www.zenepal.com www.recognize365.com & www.freehr.app which are are being run by myself and the team in the Human Resources space – It’s very time consuming initially in getting the software ready to launch, but worth it when we are able to save lots of money for our clients (also they are probably happier in the time they save!!) I wouldn’t change it for the world.
What advice would you give to young entrepreneurs that wanted to follow in your footsteps?
Read, read, read! There are no shortcuts to being a good leader or becoming successful in business, you have to commit to learning the skills you will need to manage your products, your people and your finances. Never give up! There will be countless times things go wrong and those around you tell you to give up. By nature we are often negative and self-limiting, you have to take control of your thoughts and remind yourself why you are doing what you are doing. The difference between the successful and the rest is the successful never gave up. Focus on one thing at a time! There is a quote going around social media that the average millionaire has seven streams of income. So many people fall into the trap of trying to setup various businesses and ideas. Down the line this is a good strategy to spread your risk but short term, have one focus and become an expert and market leader at it. Employ people smarter than you! Work out what you are good at and stick to it, for everything else hire an expert!
You’re obviously a very busy guy, how do you manage to balance your work and your social life?
I have gone through times where I have focused too much on business and other times where I probably spent a bit too much time away from business, the key is balance. For me, the hardest part of running a start up is the lack of structure you have. Having a structure to your day is the key to success in my opinion. I learnt a great technique called time boxing where you section what hours of the day you are going to spend on what part of your life i.e. an area of business, your health, your relationships, learning etc. Always tackle the most important task first thing when you are most focused. You can work too hard though, I have found that working long hours without taking time off to relax makes you feel unfulfilled and you can begin to resent what you do. Time boxing time off helps with this.
What do you do outside of work to relax in Dubai?
I am a keen runner and get quite competitive about it so I like to spend my Saturday mornings training!
You can find out more and follow Lewis on Instagram www.instagram.com/lwdxb