Anneza Pitsialis – powers up innovation at CRL London

Staying sane and grounded is just one of the many challenges facing start-up founders and entrepreneurs and that’s just one good reason to be part of a CRL programme or the co-working community. As every entrepreneur knows, it can be isolating working on any kind of product, without the support of a trusted advisor, or just someone who ‘gets it’, to bounce ideas off. Fortunately for the latest cohort on the CRL Accelerator, the programme for tech start-ups comes with a ready-made community and lots of support. 
According to Anneza Pitsialis, the new CRL Programmes Manager, “A great advantage of being on the Accelerator or BOOST programme is that you’re part of a like-minded maker community where there’s always someone around to exchange ideas with and provide a much-needed sanity check.”

“Working closely with the start-ups – actual founders and entrepreneurs – who are developing tangible products, is a really exciting prospect. I’m really looking forward to implementing the CRL programmes.”

Anneza has been in the world of start-ups for 8 years developing programmes with a focus on community management. She previously worked in the arts, and even dabbled in the dating events business. She now joins CRL, fresh from three-and-a-half years at Startupbootcamp, where she managed the operations for 22 programmes, across 15 cities. That’s got to have taken some organising, so we’re pleased that she’s bringing her skills and varied experience to our programme team. She describes herself as a naturally curious person, who loves to understand the space she’s in, so she’s going to fit in very well.
Anneza will be managing both the Accelerator programme, for early stage start-ups, and the BOOST programme, for start-ups that are ready to scale up, and she’s already working closely with Toby Kress, MD and Jim Reeves, Product Development Director, to shape future programmes. She explained, “The programmes are now much more flexible and responsive to the individual needs of the cohort members. We’re working more closely with them to shape the content that’s most relevant to their business and fitting that around the core content. That way, they each get a truly bespoke programme built around a tried-and-tested, common foundation.”
She added, “It’s important that cohort members realise that they’re massively supported by a great community, including some amazing mentors, so we’ll be encouraging them to engage with each other and to make the most of it while they have it. Being on these programmes is not just about churning out a fantastic product. It’s also important that the founders leave with a resilience that will serve them long after they leave the programme. 

“To help with that, we’ve factored in founder talks and we’re planning to have regular socials where everyone can get together, let off steam, and have a bit of a sanity check. Cohort members will be encouraged to share their knowledge and experiences with each other and that should help to build a better, stronger start-up community.”

The latest Accelerator programme has now started, and the cohort is made up of a diverse mix of ages, experiences, graduates, non-graduates and team sizes. Anneza says, as a group they should be able to offer each other a lot of support, as they all bring something different to the mix. She admits that it does make things more complex, in terms of the programming, but, as she says, that’s all part of the fun and she’s looking forward to being part of the high-octane energy created by the start-ups and entrepreneurs.
If you’re looking for inspiring co-working space, maker space, world-class prototype facilities, or looking to join a structured, start-up support programme, why not pop in and take a look at what lies at the heart of the CRL community? Contact Anezza Pitsialis

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