Loren Brill didn’t set out to be an entrepreneur. In fact, it was a medical diagnosis that ultimately led her to start an all-natural cookie dough business called Sweet Loren’s. As a first-stage entrepreneur, she struggled to talk shop with her peers.
Tagged: EO Accelerator
We had a chance to speak with cryptocurrency investor Philippe Theunissen (PT) and brand consultant Qin Guo (QG) in Shanghai, and here’s what they had to say about their experiences as EO Accelerator participants.
EO: HOW DID YOU LEARN ABOUT THE EO ACCELERATOR PROGRAM?
QG: My business is in brand consulting. I actually started working for this company and now I own and operate it, so I have a lot of responsibilities and challenges. I hadn’t planned to take over the company, and when I did, I couldn’t talk to everyone around me about everything anymore. So, I started to explore options for learning. I had a business partner—who started the business—who introduced me to EO. When I found out there was an EO Accelerator program focused on start-up and smaller-sized businesses with ambition to grow, I wanted to join. Since joining the program, I’ve been able to share a lot of those issues with other entrepreneurs. I’ve become more resolute about my decision to run the company.
Meet Hana Laurenzo—one of the many entrepreneurs who discovered a wealth of learning and possibility in the EO Accelerator program.
When Hana Laurenzo launched her translation business in Fort Worth, Texas, in 2007, she did what every smart small business owner does—joined local professional organizations, like the chamber of commerce, and generally sought opportunities to mingle with like-minded professionals. But it wasn’t until a client told her about the Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) that she felt she was on to something special. There were just two problems: She wasn’t yet at the million-dollar mark in revenue which would allow her membership and she felt the Accelerator program in Dallas was too far away from her relatively young business. So, Hana waited.
Brad Stevens is an EO Atlanta member, Chair of that chapter’s Accelerator program, and founder and CEO of Outsource Access, which helps companies grow by providing highly skilled virtual assistants. In part I of our interview, we asked Brad about his journey as an entrepreneur. Here, he shares his experience and insights for growing Atlanta’s Accelerator program. Accelerator is EO’s targeted program for first-stage entrepreneurs.
What has surprised you most about working with entrepreneurs and the Accelerator program?
Working with EO’s Accelerator program is an incredible and invaluable experience that I hope to stay involved with long-term. I’ve gleaned several interesting and somewhat surprising takeaways:
Bryan Luoma is an EO Accelerator (EOA) participant who owns a CAD drafting business based in the New York metro area. Bryan and his employees credit the EO Accelerator program with building his confidence and expertise as an entrepreneur scaling his business.
Christina Hagopian, an EO Accelerator (EOA) graduate and EO New York member, owns a successful marketing and design firm attracting top-tier, global clients. Christina graduated to EO membership, where she has grown her network and multiplied her business prospects.
By Salar Salahshoor, founder and CEO of Turnclick
When I first started thinking about selling my business, my biggest concern was that it would be hard to find a good suitor given the relatively small size of my company. I worried the process would be a big distraction and complete waste of time. I couldn’t have been more wrong. This is the story of how I sold my digital-marketing agency, Only Sky, in less than one month by connecting the dots between EO and the EO Accelerator program, which I am a member of in San Francisco.
By Dustin Puryear, Founder and CEO of Puryear
There is nothing more nerve-racking than firing somebody. Yet, here I was doing it.
“Sorry, but you just don’t fit. You were great when you started in your role here, but now things have changed and sometimes that means hard choices have to be made.”
There may have been a little quiver in my hand as I started signing the pink slip.
“The harsh reality is that sometimes a company moves faster than you and, well, you get left behind. That’s what has happened here. It’s nothing personal. It’s just business. I’m sure you understand.”
Kim Ades is an EO Accelerator participant from Toronto and the president and founder of Frame of Mind Coaching, helping clients reach new levels of success in both their professional and personal lives. EO Accelerator, a program run by the Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), enables early stage entrepreneurs to catapult their companies and empowers them with tools for aggressive business growth. Kim offers up her thoughts on effective ways to condition your employees to perform at the highest levels.
Even though a lot of time has passed, I remember the Behavioral Psychology class I took in university like it was yesterday. The bulk of the curriculum was focused on learning methods of behavioral conditioning through rat experiments.
There were three primary conditioning strategies:
- Positive reinforcement
- Negative reinforcement
- Aversive conditioning
By Lauren King, Director of the EO Accelerator Program
As someone who’s dedicated her career to helping small-scale entrepreneurs grow their businesses, I’ve heard many skeptics say a business accelerator program is just a cover for startups looking to increase capital. I disagree – after working with thousands of entrepreneurs from around the world who are putting in the hard work and time to reach the US$1 million mark, I see the importance of accelerator programs enabling businesspeople to reach personal and professional goals. From a high-level perspective, these small businesses are making a positive impact on the global economy, creating more jobs and empowering communities. On a personal level, giving entrepreneurs the support and resources to realize their potential is immensely valuable on many levels.