By Ken Jurina, an EO Edmonton member and president and CEO of Top Draw.
I can honestly say that I’ve probably learned more about how to succeed in business in the past 12 months than I have throughout the previous 18 years as a young, eager, hard-working entrepreneur.
Don’t get me wrong. I know I’ve done a few things right. For example, I evolved a one-man home business into two award-winning enterprises, both of which made appearances on Alberta Venture’s Fast 50 Growth List. Those two companies have since evolved into one innovative Internet marketing agency with 16 employees, a North American client base and the consistent delivery of Creative Solutions. Measured Results.
Maybe “succeed in business” isn’t the right phrase … I have achieved success. But what I have amassed through nearly two decades as a business owner, at this moment, seems to pale in comparison to the wealth of practical (almost prescriptive) knowledge that I have gained in one short year as an EO member.
How can I make this substantial claim? Looking back, I think I can attribute the rewards I have enjoyed by embracing our EO Edmonton Chapter President, Rich Pierson’s, mantra to “own your experience.” I encourage all new and existing EO members to do the same!
My EO “fast track” began when I was asked to sit on the committee of our local EO Accelerator Program, as an almost brand new member. The immersion into this fantastic program that helps to foster the growth and development of small businesses gave me direct exposure to the values, ethics and beliefs of EO, while providing support to other entrepreneurs.
I had the opportunity to meet board members, who continually share their experiences and time. This involvement also opened the door to an invitation to speak at February’s national conference in Whistler, Canada, alongside Charly Palls, Director of Search from Google. Every aspect about that weekend was spectacular.
Forum Moderator training was another extremely rewarding and empowering process. In fact, the entire philosophy of encouraging everyone to take turns facilitating Forums contributes to professional and personal development in a dynamic way.
My entire experience with EO so far, from membership application and orientation through attendance at learning events and the networking and relationship-building that happens at every gathering, has given me more than I ever expected. And for that I am extremely grateful.
At EO, like everything in life, you get out of it what you put in. Embrace the strong culture, positive sharing and networking opportunities that this dynamic organization has to offer, and you, too, can maximize your experience as an EO member.