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  • Writer's pictureCaroline Clark

Bristol Technology Festival, Colston Hall.

The launch of a new business ...

For the best part of year, I have been quietly cultivating a new business alongside my good friend Caroline. 

It ‘officially’ launches this weekend at the Bristol Technology Festival at Colston Hall and quite frankly it is a terrifying prospect. 

Failing is something that we are all trying to avoid, but as young people we just did it anyway. When did I/we ‘acquire’ fear?

I’ve been working in the design industry for the best part of 10 years now. My own journey has not followed a straight path, quite the opposite.

There have been many obstacles, huge learnings curves, disappointments … windowless offices, poor pay and a couple of terrible bosses too. Equally I have had some incredible opportunities, worked with fantastic people and been involved in some bonkers projects that I didn’t even know were feasible. 

The positives of my career highs to date far outweigh the lows. Through it all I have gained a huge amount of confidence, but I still feel the fear when doing something new … like launching a business.

What will people think? Will it work? Will it be successful? What if it doesn’t? Will people want to engage? These questions are all rooted in ‘the fear of failure’.

In the past four weeks, I have been asked what I do on a regular basis … if I am an designer, an engineer, an artist? The answer is never simple. I am all these things, and many others within reason. 

This week I get to add Co-Founder to my response.  

Someone suggested I was a ‘multi-hyphenate’ recently.  I am not one for trendy terms, but on reflection I think I am and it is probably the best reflection of what I do and how I work.


In fact, I have realised I have subconsciously been working against getting too specialised’ 

for quite some time now. So has this prepared me enough for the next adventure? 

This strange and varied skill set I have accumulated allows me to engage with a variety of people and topics daily and now, it very wonderfully leads to Zebra by Design.


Creating your own path and being interested in lots of different things is okay, it might just lead to something new. And that’s what Zebra is all about. Helping young people create great ideas and then taking them on a journey of discovery to new things.

This weekend we will actively be seeking out the multi-hyphenates. The misfits. The ones with unconventional journeys. The ones who want to do something different. The Zebras.

So, in the spirit of failure and the other Zebras we want to work with … I am going to feel the fear and do it anyway. Let’s launch a business!


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