Scaleup Q&A: Alessandro Zerillo, ECO Surv

Allessandro Zerillo is the founding director of ECO Surv

Alessandro Zerillo is the founding director of ECO Surv, which specialises in supplying software solutions to the energy efficiency and renewables sector.

ECO Surv took part in Two Zero’s Scaleup Resurgence programme designed for high growth SME businesses, enabling them to focus on quickly returning to full strength after the pandemic. Along with fellow director Nathaniel Butters, they are both taking part in Two Zero’s Scaleup Leaders Network.

Alessandro shares what he has learned as a scaleup leader, what is the best piece of business advice he has received and what the legacy he wants to create for ECO Surv.

What is the most important quality of a scaleup business leader and why?

I feel that the most important quality of a scaleup business leader is adaptability because it allows for you to respond to changing circumstances in the market, pivot your business strategy when necessary, and build a culture of resilience within the team.

This is critical for navigating the unpredictable landscape of rapid growth and staying ahead of the competition.

How have you grown and developed as a scaleup leader?

I have grown and developed by looking out for new learning opportunities, such as attending industry events, networking with industry peers, and taking training programmes were I can. I also ask for feedback from my team, reflect on my own strengths and weaknesses, and continually work to improve my leadership skills.

How do you inspire and empower your people?

I always try to inspire and empower my team by setting a clear vision, creating a culture of transparency and trust, providing opportunities for professional growth and development, giving my team autonomy and ownership over their work, recognising, and rewarding success, and promoting a collaborative and supportive work environment.

All of this isn’t easy as you can imagine and has taken a number of years to implement, and we are still tweaking the dials as we go along.

What is the best piece of business advice you have received and why?

Since the age of 22 when I started my first SaaS software business, I’ve met a lot of influential people that have given me some great advice but the best advice I would say is: “Having a vision is nothing without the execution, as without the execution in most cases you’re just daydreaming.”

This resonated with me as for a scaleup business to succeed it’s all about the execution and the ability to fail quickly and pivot if required.

What is the biggest lesson you have learned on your business journey, and how has this impacted you?

How important it is to plan, as when you scale a business and your team without a plan you just have a lot of people running around with their hair on fire. In the early days of the business, I would say we flew by the seat of our pants, (which don’t get me wrong worked for a while), but as the business grow in head count we quickly realised how important monthly, quarterly and annual planning is.

What scaleup business do you admire the most and why?

Frame – founded by Liam Fulton and Hannah Bratley.

Great technology and they have gone from strength to strength over the last four years, working with innovative technologies in artificial intelligence (AI).

What key metrics do you look at everyday in your business?

Across all areas of the business, we are constantly refining our metrics, but we monitor key metrics such as:

  • Profitability
  • Monthly recurring revenue
  • Customer lifetime value
  • Churn rate
  • Net promoter score

These metrics help us to measure the health and growth of the business, as well as identify areas for improvement to provide the best service to all of our customer base.

What is the legacy you want to create?

I want to leave a legacy of innovation, a positive impact by creating a product that solves real world problem for our customers, delivering exceptional customer service, promoting a culture of continuous improvement and learning, and making a positive contribution to society and the environment.

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