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London Tech Week

Startup visionaries unveil 3 key New Year resolutions for tech success in 2024

Although, logically, New Year is just another arbitrary date in the calendar, there is something about it that sparks optimism. And even the tech sector, which makes improvement part of its everyday mission, joins the annual habit of setting resolutions.

TFN spoke to some tech leaders about their hopes and intentions for 2024. And like people in every other walk of life, their resolutions focused on a few key areas: their time, their relationships, and the planet.

Using time purposefully

Conor Sheridon, CEO of Nory, an AI-powered end-to-end solution for hospitality, put time management at the very top of his list. “Time is precious, which is why time management is my top priority for next year,” he said, “my days are full of context switching and zooming in and out”. But he recognised that time away from work is just as important as time at the desk. “I plan to tailor my calendar to be as consistent as possible outside of work to provide some semblance of routine and stability. As boring as it sounds, it’ll work to bring balance!”

Andriy Dovbenko, Founder and Principal, UK-Ukraine TechExchange is also prioritising his time. “It’s easy to be distracted by the daily demands and short-term requests, but we must not lose sight of the bigger picture,” he said. “My resolution for 2024 is to be more selective and decisive with my time, streamlining my activities around a cause which is close to my heart.”

Unsurprisingly, given UK-Ukraine TechExchange’s mission, he knows where his time will be prioritised. “With the war in Ukraine still raging on, my focus is on finding the very best DefenceTech and AgriTech startups that have the potential to turn the tide of the war today and make a positive impact for the future.”

Focusing on relationships

Babs Ogundeyi, Group CEO and Founder of fintech and Nigerian neobank, Kuda, plans to use the year ahead to share his experience. “I aim to leverage the knowledge gained throughout my career, by being more intentional about sharing insights, particularly within the tech community,” he told us.

Ogundeyi is also translating these resolutions for Kuda, by creating knowledge-sharing sessions, promoting mentoring programmes within the organisation, and implementing initiatives to develop company culture.

Nory’s Sheridan is also focusing on how teams work together, “we’re blocking more time for cross-team planning and problem-solving.” And these are deliberately in-person. “These sessions are face to face, which enables the team to bond and also to step off the treadmill to look at the bigger picture goals for the business and how they are influencing them.”

A sustainable 2024

After a succession of years that have seen ever-more dramatic effects of climate change, the biggest theme for resolutions was about helping our planet. That is even true for those who will be working off the planet.

Spacetech Skyrora’s CEO and founder, Volodymyr Levykin’s first resolution is to see the first UK-based orbital rocket launch from their Scotland base next year. But, despite having his eyes on space, he still thinks about local sustainability. “Having a localised supply chain not only benefits us financially but also from a sustainability perspective,” he said. “It enables us to minimise costs and the wider impact on the environment.”

Florian Hildebrand, CEO & Co-Founder of Greenlyte Carbon Technologies, is keen that 2024 is the year that sees a shift in carbon capture. He explains, “direct air capture has not yet been able to achieve cost competitiveness with CO2 prices and faces increasing critique from the public.” The consequence has been a step back towards fossil fuels in some areas.

“We must urgently prove unit economics to show that direct air capture can become a viable business,” he said. “By the end of 2024, we aim to make a big step in this direction and have built out our first commercial demonstrator to put us closer to this goal.”

But, perhaps implicit in every VC and founder’s resolutions is to make the world a better place through their work. Although, as noted by Massimiliano Magrini, Partner at United Ventures, tech is not always environmentally friendly, so efforts are required to make the planet pay the price of progress. “It’s hard to imagine that the level of complexity will decrease in the coming years,” he said. Instead, he predicted that with AI, the demands on infrastructure will only be greater. Therefore, he said, “our focus will be sharp on pioneering solutions that bring energy efficiency to the forefront to ensure these technologies benefit rather than burden the planet.”

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