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Founders Diaries: Introducing TaxCalc CEO Tracy Ebdon-Poole

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At TaxCalc we create technologically-superior tax and accountancy software. However, as important as what we do, is how we do it – and who do it for.

We take immense pride in developing leading-edge products built from the ground up to meet our customers’ needs. This means creating software that’s thoughtfully designed to be intuitive to use and of the highest quality while remaining market leading on price. Combining this with unsurpassable levels of customer support, we believe the TaxCalc proposition truly adds up to exceptional value. Not only has this set us apart in our marketplace, it has resulted in high levels of trust, advocacy and customer retention.

If I’m asked what drives me, I’d respond by telling you what drives us as a team. As well as mutual respect, we share a deep-rooted commitment to our customers, our products and to innovation and entrepreneurship. In the following diary entries I’ll be providing an insight into some of the challenges that we face as a business in our ever-changing competitive world. But first a question that I ask myself almost daily. How on earth did I get here and what have I learned?

I’ve been incredibly lucky to have the career I’ve had. Pretty much, I’ve had experiences I’d never have dreamed of starting out. Some of which is printable, some not! When you’re dropped in at the deep end, you have no choice but to learn how to swim – and swim well if you’re to make headway in business.

I’ve run teams on the shop floor and in product design. I’ve managed near-vertical growth at Dyson while turning the vacuum cleaning industry on its head. I’ve immersed myself in corporate takeovers and mentored SMEs to success. But nothing’s been more rewarding than taking my own business from a fledgling acquisition to a multimillion-pound enterprise.

What’s inspired me? My late father remains my greatest source of advice and inspiration. A spirited entrepreneur and philanthropist, he was a man of great intelligence and empathy and had a shrewd eye for a business opportunity. It was he who advised me when I acquired the assets of two business entities to form the “new” TaxCalc and remained my wisest counsel.

I’ve encountered many great entrepreneurs and businesspeople and been inspired by the good, the great and the not-so great. Above all for me success doesn’t equate to success if it’s achieved at someone else’s expense. I value emotional intelligence and believe what defines you as a person is the way you treat people, be they employees, customers or third parties.

In my experience you get back what you give in terms of loyalty, hard work and respect. I see our business as a family and make a point of knowing each of our team by name and regularly take time out to chat to them all.

This article is part of a wider campaign called Founders Diaries, a section of Real Business that brings together 20 inspiring business builders to share their stories. Assembling companies from a wide variety of sectors and geographies, each columnist produces a diary entry each month. Visit the Founders Diaries section to find out more.

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