Fiverr’s Bukki Adedapo discusses the changing world of freelancing and what he learned from setting up his own tech start-up in the past.
Bukki Adedapo is the UK country manager at Fiverr, which is developing an online marketplace for freelance services. Its platform connects businesses with freelancers in areas such as graphic design, digital marketing and programming.
In his role, Adedapo’s main responsibilities are growing Fiverr’s presence in the UK and raising overall awareness of the brand.
‘I really enjoy working with fast-growing organisations and helping meet their goals’
– BUKKI ADEDAPO
What are the biggest challenges facing your sector and how are you tackling them?
One of the biggest challenges we’re facing is the perception of freelancing platforms. Some people believe that platforms only offer low-skilled and cheap freelancers, which isn’t a fair perception.
Freelancing is an extremely viable career and businesses can get highly skilled workers through our service.
What are the key sector opportunities you’re capitalising on?
We’re certainly seeing a huge change in the way people are approaching the working world post-Covid.
Businesses are having to adapt as more people want a flexible, hybrid working life, and we’re also seeing an increase in people taking portfolio careers which suit them more when it comes to work-life balance.
What set you on the road to where you are now?
I was previously a management consultant but then joined a series of start-ups where I developed and executed growth strategies.
I joined Fiverr a year ago as UK growth manager. I really enjoy working with fast-growing organisations and helping meet their goals.
What’s the biggest risk you’ve ever taken?
I think one of the biggest risks was setting up my own hardware technology business, Gilaasi, which was a health-tech start-up building prescription glasses that adjust to sunglasses with the tap of the frame.
The hardware tech business is incredibly competitive, and we were competing against some of the biggest companies in the world. So it was a really exciting time and I learned a huge amount about what it takes to grow a business from scratch, which I’ve been able to implement in my role at Fiverr. One of my proudest moments was raising over £60,000 and also placing as runner-up in the James Dyson Award for the product.
What one work skill do you wish you had?
Having a greater understanding of the priorities of every stakeholder within the business and how they interact with one another.
How do you get the best out of your team?
Making sure I truly understand what my team’s priorities are so that we’re all on the same page.
Have you noticed a diversity problem in your sector?
I think there are diversity issues, not just in our industry but more broadly in the workplace. A lot of businesses are doing great things to address the issue, but obviously I think more can be done.
In order for businesses to be more inclusive, I think they need to be asking themselves the question of whether they do have a diversity issue. Only then can the issue be really addressed properly.
What’s the best piece of career advice you have ever received?
If you’re in a room, whether it’s a meeting or an industry event, it’s important to recognise that you are just as valuable as everyone else in that room.
What books have you read that you would recommend?
I really enjoyed Factfulness by Hans Rosling. Principles by Ray Dalio was also an excellent read, and lastly The Art of Strategy by Avinash Dixit and Barry Nalebuff offers some great insights into how to think strategically when interacting with other people.
What are the essential tools and resources that get you through the working week?
Definitely my calendar and my to-do list!
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