Naomi Simson on the one thing entrepreneurs should do if they want to grow their company


Entrepreneurs have two ears but only one mouth for a reason, according to RedBalloon founder and Shark Tank investor Naomi Simson.

Speaking at the Sage Connect conference in New South Wales last month, Simson said the one thing entrepreneurs should do if they want to grow their company is to listen to others.

“Often we get people who come before us whose ideas aren’t fully evolved yet,” Simson said, referring to her experience as a judge on Channel Ten’s Shark Tank.

“What often happens is we see people come in and they are so in love with what they think they’re going to do they actually can’t listen. The critical thing to business growth is your ability to listen. We were given to ears and one mouth for a reason.”

Read more: Behind the scenes of Shark Tank with Red Balloon founder Naomi Simson

Simson says one of the many things she has learnt from Shark Tank is founders can often get in the way of their own success.

“Any great leader listens far more than they speak,” Simson says.

“They ask the curious question. They ask the right question. And that’s our job. But sometimes I’m sure audiences look and go, why didn’t you invest in that business?

“Most times it’s because I couldn’t work with that person – not that the idea isn’t good, not that the market’s not there.”

Broede Carmody is a former senior reporter at SmartCompany. Previously, he was a co-editor of RMIT University's student magazine Catalyst.

We Recommend