We recently hosted a webcast conversation between Toby and Elliot focused on how the desire to solve two real-world problems – removing plastics from our oceans and fixing deterioration in our roads – turned into one big idea.
When Toby McCartney went to his daughter’s school assembly featuring a presentation about “what lives in our oceans?” the last thing he expected was for it to make him an entrepreneur. But when it was his six-year old daughter’s turn to speak up, instead of answering with fish, turtles, or whales like the other children in her class, she said, “plastics.” It was one of those moments that made Toby take pause. “I [didn’t] want the next generation growing up in a world [where] it’s expected that there will be more plastics living in our oceans than fish themselves,” he says.
That desire to make a change happened to fall right in line with another big problem affecting people throughout the world: road deterioration and pothole problems. Toby recalled time he spent volunteering in India where he observed locals place landfill plastics in potholes and melt them down with diesel fuel to seal the holes. This got him thinking, “what if there was a way to take these waste plastics to mix them in asphalt?”
Now the CEO of his company MacRebur, Toby spoke with Lean Startup Co. faculty member Elliot Susel in a recent webcast about the trials and tribulations of entrepreneurship and what he’s learned along the way about pursuing big ideas.