July 4, 2022

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People

Welcoming James Lloyd to our product team!

Hey James, how long have you been with TrueCircle?

I’ve only been here for a few weeks — the first week was quite full on! I’ve been having meetings to see what people at TrueCircle work on and understand who I would be working with. Now I feel like I’m starting to settle in a bit more.

So, what do you do at TrueCircle and what are you working on at the moment?

I am a product and operations manager.

For the product role, I am working between engineering, business development and the customer to scope out and prioritise features for our products based on our customers’ problems and needs.

The operations side is more general, helping the team here and there to improve efficiency/effectiveness and looking at the internal processes of the company and help out where required.

Could you tell me a little bit about yourself and your background please?

Yeah, sure. I graduated with a Manufacturing Engineering degree from Cambridge last year.

Before going to university, I worked for a year at a manufacturing company. That was a cool role. I was essentially doing small-scale digital transformation. I was working to get more data on the operational processes, so the company can make more informed decisions about costs and production efficiency.

In the summer of my second year at uni, I worked as a software engineer at a climate tech startup. I really enjoyed working in a small team where everyone has a shared mission. Then from that, I started to throw myself into entrepreneurial projects at my university.

One fun project we worked on was trying to design a 3D printer which could create housing for refugees. The printer would be deployed at a site and use locally sourced materials to create houses.

I also created my own marketplace while I was at university. I got to do some development work, manage the product, as well as interview customers to understand the problems I was trying to solve. I really enjoyed that experience.

Then I turned away from engineering a tiny bit and went down and did a consulting internship. I think that’s a really good career path for learning a lot very quickly, because you need to work across so many different industries. Consulting is very strategic, though, and for me, it wasn’t action-focused enough.

From these experiences, I learnt that I want to be working on implementing products that will benefit people in reality. Moving forward, I knew I wanted to work solely in sustainability or climate tech.

How did you find out about TrueCircle?

When looking for a job, people can find open roles on a company’s website, on LinkedIn, or through articles.

I was actually looking at climate tech investors like Lower Carbon Capital and browsing their portfolio companies. My rationale was that those are the companies that have strong backing and are likely to be working on something that’s adding a lot of value to the world and has a high chance of succeeding.

So I found TrueCircle there and thought what the company does in the recycling space looked really interesting — in an industry which creates circular economies and has the potential to remove the massive emissions associated with producing new virgin materials. Yet, currently, only 9% of plastics produced get recycled. So it felt like TrueCircle was disrupting the industry. Naturally, I decided to apply.

As a new joiner, how would you describe TrueCircle in three words?

Hmm, it’s actually hard to describe with three words… so I may need to add some description.

Let’s go for 10 words. Why don’t we brainstorm it together?

Sure.

I think the company is energising, fast-moving, and about recycling

What I love is how it’s a small team, but it has lots of pockets of teams, it’s not like any place I’ve previously worked. I really like that. I don’t know if there’s a word for that, but pockets would be how I would describe that.

What are the pockets?

These are the specialised sub-teams that work on different products (working from all across the world!). TrueCircle has two main products, the TrueCircle AI vision systems and another in the pipeline. We have an individual engineering team working on this forthcoming product, then TrueCircle AI has three specialised engineering pockets that work across Machine Learning, Software and Hardware.

Then you have the product agnostic teams like management, operations, customer success, marketing and business development (hopefully I haven’t forgotten anything).

Overall — this makes TrueCircle a strong multi-disciplinary team. Everyone on the team is very approachable, very switched-on, and seems really suited to their job. I think it’s the dream team to take on recycling.

What about you Wicky? How would you describe TrueCircle in three words?

My three words?

Yes. What would yours be?

Belonging, fun, and… learning!

Yes, learning, definitely. Learning could also be one of my words…

Ah, if I can have another go at the question, my answer will be:

Iced-coffee, meetings, and then I just got a lot of excitement (about what we’re building at TrueCircle)!

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