In this uncut clip,Sebastian Jackson, founder of Social Club Grooming Company in Detroit, answers the question: “What drove you to entrepreneurship?” Sebastian’s salon collects and composts hair to revitalize Detroit’s urban canopy.
Recently Linda Abraham from the Accepted Blog was gracious enough to chat with us about MBAs Across America and what we hope to accomplish this summer. Check out the podcast to hear more!Read More »
“MBAs Across America is a truly brilliant idea to connect business students with the entrepreneurs in the trenches. There are so many things that these students can learn from small business owners across America; things that have more to do with the human element of business, things that aren’t necessarily taught in business school. It is a mutually beneficial collaboration as the project will allow entrepreneurs direct access to intellectual resources that they may not have the time or connections to obtain otherwise. This is how businesses and MBA students should be growing and learning; on the ground, on the road, and around the kitchen tables across America.”
–Sarah Calhoun, founding owner of Red Ants Pants; 2011 Montana Entrepreneur of the Year; 2012 SBA National Women in Business ChampionRead More »
From very early on in discussing MBAs Across America, we knew that one of our primary goals was to tell the human story of each of our 10 entrepreneurs. What is your vision for the future? What challenges are you facing? What inspired you to start this business? These were the types of questions we imagined ourselves asking entrepreneurs, involved in the process of passing along their experiences but not as entrepreneurs ourselves.
An unexpected consequence of struggling to get MBAs Across America off the ground, however, is that Casey, Hicham, Amaris and I are getting our own small taste of what it is like to be an entrepreneur raising capital, to have a burning vision that you want to realize and a plan to make it happen, but having obstacles in the way that sometimes make you feel like your vision is at risk of turning into just another good idea that didn’t get done. While we have received moral support and encouragement from most everyone we have approached, that has not translated into sponsorships as readily as we thought it would. For us as individuals and as a team this has been humbling, and it has made us sharpen our pitch and work hard to iron out details, change our approach dramatically at times, and always remember to ask for feedback even when we get a rejection. Aside from pushing us to raise our game and launch our indiegogo campaign, struggling has also given us a deeper respect for entrepreneurs who go out to the capital markets to find and pitch investors without the benefit of an alumni database or a set of willing peers and professors like we have access to here at Harvard Business School.
We are finding it difficult even with those advantages, and it is troubling to think of all of the brilliant ideas out there do not get the support they need to gain traction because founding teams do not have access to the right people or resources. It also makes us more curious and eager than ever to get out there this summer and learn about the kinds of cities and ecosystems that are best supporting entrepreneurs to overcome these challenges and to do our part to reinforce them by connecting them to each other and back to professors and classmates here at HBS.
We can’t tell you how much we appreciate the support we’ve already received on our indiegogo campaign. It humbles and inspires us to continue to work hard to secure the full funding to make this trip a reality and free for each of our ten entrepreneurs, but in the meantime, what are your stories of early trouble, success, or failure in securing support for a project you cared about? Tell us about it on Twitter or Facebook!
-MikeRead More »