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Based in Galway - working with clients across Ireland.

About Donncha Hughes

Donncha Hughes is a mentor, trainer and business advisor. He delivers group and one to one training on Start Your Own Business, Lean Startup, Marketing, Sales and has a particular interest in Business Plans. My other website is www.startupwebtraining.com which i use to promote my Website Creation services.

Early Stage Startups – My Inc60 Podcast – From Idea to a Business

Inc60 Blog Banner Donncha Hughes

I recently met with Clare Carroll of Inc60 to record a podcast about the pre-startup and early stage business journey. The Lean Canvas as outlined in the book Running Lean is an ideal tool at this stage. The 30-minute podcast also discusses Sales, Mentoring, building your Team and supports for business. Thanks to Maria Staunton […]

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NEW – Online Training to Create Financial Projections for your Local Business

Financial Projections Online Workshop

I am delighted to announce that I have published an online training programme called ‘Creating Financial Projections for a Local Business‘. One year access is €50 including VAT. This ONE HOUR online programme is for you if: You a startup promoter or small business owner who needs to create financial projections for your business to […]

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20 Business Building Ideas from ‘The 1-Page Marketing Plan’ by Allan Dib [Book Review & Infographic]

1 PAGE Marketing Plan by Allan Dib Blogpost Book Review

The 1-Page Marketing Plan Get New Customers, Make More Money, And Stand Out from the Crowd By Allan Dib I recently received this Marketing book in the post for free. I had been asked nicely in advance if I would review it. I like reading business books so I agreed (no fee involved). The book […]

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Organise GMIT New Frontiers One 2 Ones with Phase 1 Participants

Doodle Banner New frontiers 1 to 1s with Donncha Hughes

As part of the New Frontiers Phase 1 programme in GMIT iHubs, Donncha will meet participants for a One 2 One session to review their draft applications prior to final application on May 17th, 2018 All participants who wish to avail of a slot are required to send a Lean Canvas and a draft of […]

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CSF Online Masterclass Go Live Announcement

Launching Commpetitive Start Fund Masterclass Online Thinkific 2018

I am delighted to announce that my first online training programme has gone live. It is a 90 minute video based programme for people applying for CSF – €50,000 Competitive Start Fund investment with Enterprise Ireland. It is ideal for startup entrepreneurs who have applied before and were not shortlisted for the Pitch Stage on […]

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Christmas Message 2017 – Scratch Animation

My christmas message 2017 was inspired by the kids summer camp when they learned scratch – this is an admittedly limited attempt but I hope you take a few seconds and that it makes you smile! The flash scratch animation does not play on Mobile so I have recorded the screen using Screen Cast O […]

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Congrats to Galway’s next wave of Super Food and Drink Entrepreneurs

clean cut meals best young entrepreneur

I recently attended the Galway Chamber Business Awards. Pat McDonagh, Founder of Supermacs delivered a fantastic speech in accepting the Special Presidents Award for his contribution to business in Galway. The performance of Supermacs, Ireland’s largest indigenous quick service restaurant chain, is amazing: Over 100 outlets across country and employs over 2,700 people. Annual commitment […]

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What ‘grants’ and other supports apply to my startup business?

Enterprise Agency Supports

If you have ever wondered what supports that you and your startup business could and should apply for, read on:

This blogpost and the accompanying presentation will categorise the supports depending on the stage of development of your startup company: pre-enterprise; early stage; and established startup

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Galway’s Startup Scene : 2017 Snapshot

Galway Ecosystem report Banner

  In late 2016, Startupblink contacted me to write a ‘Startup Ecosystem article‘ on Galway to feature on their global website. I agreed and enlisted the assistance of John Breslin, NUIG, PorterShed and Startup Galway; and Barry Egan, Enterprise Ireland West Region. The brief was very specific with set questions to be answered such as: […]

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Happy Christmas & A little free Gift

Christmas 2016 banner

A quick blogpost to wish everyone in Galway and startup land a very Happy Christmas in 2016. A gift : 2.5 minutes of your time I love Lackagh Choir’s When a Child is Born available to listen free on Soundcloud. Pure Brilliant – well done to all involved. Their first CD was superb so presume […]

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Dealing with difficult clients as a Freelance Consultant

Troublesome trucks aka difficult customers

I was asked recently as part of a Q&A to discuss how I deal with ‘difficult clients’ or customers. Having provided a short and off the top of the head response, this post is my reflections on this very interesting question:     Starting Point : Choose your Customers Wisely   As a freelancer, you […]

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Role of SEO in marketing your freelance business

SEO Google Starter Guide Quote for Banner

Have you ever wondered does SEO, inbound marketing and a blog work for a small business? How important is SEO and content marketing within the marketing mix of a freelancer. I think that the answer is that it has been beneficial for my self employed consultancy and training business based in the West of Ireland. […]

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Good strategy; the importance of proximate goals

Eagle for strategy featured image

Goal setting is a key component of strategy development but it is not Strategy. In many cases, the key question ‘How are we going to do that’ is not answered. Strategy is not what you hope your performance is going to be. Strategy is about how you are going to get there. This is one […]

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A quick explanation and example of Cashflow (video)

Cash is King

I am not an accountant but I do my own accounts. I also work with clients on financial projections. Finance is at the core of business and marketing. Cashflow is the core of finances. This is a short blogpost to explain Cashflow to business novices using a somewhat realistic scenario. The details are outlined in […]

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Business Model Canvas for Social Enterprise

Start a Social Enterprise Ballybane Feb March 2016

As I explained in this LinkedIn Pulse article entitled “Inspiring: Social Enterprise in Galway 2016”, I am involved in delivering a new ‘Start a Social Enterprise’ programme on behalf of SCCUL Enterprises and Galway City Partnership – first quarter of 2016 . Workshop 2 addressed business planning. Before the programme commenced, I was wondering whether […]

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CSF Masterclass + Articles about CSF for InspiredStartups.com

Inspired Startups articles on CSF

Click EventBrite Button above to book to attend the FREE CSF Masterclass on Thursday 1st March 2018 hosted by Bizmentors.ie in SCCUL Enterprise Centre, Ballybane Galway. Here is the 80 second promo video on the event. Donncha Hughes is also delivering the Masterclass in the Regional Development Centre, DKIT on Friday 2nd March. Book via […]

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Thumbs up for Hubspot Academy Inbound Certification

Hubspot Academy Inbound Certification Study Guide

I received an email from Hubspot Academy around the 3rd week of December 2015. The email offered a free online programme to learn all about Inbound Marketing. After undertaking the programme, in short intervals over a few days, I successfully took the test and received my Inbound Certification as per badge on sidebar.  This post […]

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Two hour Negotiations Workshop, DCU Invent, 10th November

Negotiations by Donncha Hughes

Donncha provides two hour, half day and full day Negotiations Workshops. Please contact to discuss your requirements.     I was recently asked by Maria Johnston, Operations & Enterprise Development Manager, DCU Invent Centre to deliver a two hour session on Negotiations at 10AM on Tuesday 10th November, 2015 for clients and startups. This post […]

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Ten things we probably knew and were reminded of during Startup Gathering Galway 2015

Last Friday (9th October 2015) was spent meeting new business acquaintances and talking to almost every startup promoter and supporter that I know in Galway. I attended 6 events throughout the entire day from 8AM till 9PM. Here are ten things (as recorded on Twitter) that I probably knew already but was reminded of:   […]

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[Book Review Part 2] Recommended Startup Marketing Books for Fast Growth Businesses

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This is the second part of a two part blogpost about books directly focused on Marketing for fast growth oriented startups. My most recent post reviewed the superb ‘Traction: A Startup Guide to Getting Customers’ by Gabrial Weinberg and Justin Mares, 2014 and this post will review Startup Growth Engines: Case Studies on How Today’s […]

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[Book Review] My favourite Startup Marketing Books for Fast Growth Businesses

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  In December 2013, I wrote a blogpost selecting my four favourite Lean Startup books from the many books on the area of Lean Startup. Since then I have been on the lookout for books more directly focused on Marketing for fast growth oriented startups.  This article highly recommends two such books: 1. Traction: A […]

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[Book Review] Disciplined Entrepreneurship : 24 Steps to a Successful Startup by Bill Aulet (2013)

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I have just finished reading Disciplined Entrepreneurship by Bill Aulet, Managing Director, Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship. Published in 2013, it is a superb book (Book available in Ireland via Easons).   This review does not seek to summarise the book – for that I suggest you read this excellent post ‘A book in […]

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About Startup Galway Pitches Meetup

Pitch Meetup Banner

In March 2015, I volunteered to become a joint Co-ordinator along with Conor O’Donovan of the Galway Startup Businesses Meetup which is now a subgroup of Startup Galway and rebranded as Startup Galway Pitches Meetup. The idea of the group is to provide a forum for early stage startups to network with their peers, with […]

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Date for Diary : ‘Business Application Writing for Success’

date for your diary 30th april 2015 Galway

As you may know, I am a member of the SCCUL Mentors programme. This provides pro bono mentoring for small business in the greater Galway area. Managed by Ballybane Enterprise Centre, the SCCUL Awards is the undoubted highlight event of the year, while the Centre also hosts regular seminars on topics of interest to local […]

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About The Startup Business Planning Jigsaw

Introducing the Business Planning Jigsaw

Managing a startup business is NOT easy. Startup entrepreneurs have lots of balls in the air. Lean Startup books, theory and practice are brilliant but the question is which model or framework do you follow and when – and are they all relevant to an Irish startup situation? To address this dilemma Donncha devised the […]

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The Dip By Seth Godin : A Book Review

the Dip book by Seth Godin

Being the Best in the World is seriously Underrated … Seth Godin The Dip   You might be wondering how I came to read Seth Godin’s book, ‘The Dip – The Extraordinary Benefits of Knowing When to Quit (And When to Stick)’ published in 2007 early in 2015. He mentioned the idea of The Dip […]

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Working with a Startup to Prepare a Business Plan

I am delighted to publish a Case Study of and testimonial for my work. It outlines in detail how I worked with a specific client to prepare a business plan for their business. It details the time involved and the process and methodology.     What is the Case Study about?   The document addresses […]

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Running a ‘freelance’ business in Ireland in 2015

2015 Banner for Donncha Hughes, Business Advisor

At the beginning of 2014, I wrote an article reviewing 2013 and setting out my business ambitions for the year. I wrote it firstly as a planning and review mechanism for myself; secondly, on basis that it might be useful for anyone in the same boat; and finally, to highlight issues that have to be […]

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Merry Christmas 2014

Merry Christmas 2014 from Donncha Hughes

2014 was a great year for my business thanks to all my wonderful customers! I want to take this opportunity to thank you for retaining my services – particularly all those repeat customers! I would also like to thank everyone who thought of me and mentioned my name when asked for assistance in areas which […]

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Customer personas, who rules the roost?

Marketing personas blogpost

Looking to create a ‘customer persona’ to inform your marketing and promotion and wondering how? This post may be helpful as it firstly provides an example and then lists some questions to consider as you formulate a description of your Bullseye customer.   Starting Point : Who is the Customer?   Any discussion of marketing […]

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