The Pop Quiz, Monday, is a fun little exam that we love to give to savvy business owners. The examination is not a surprise, after all, since the interviewee already knew about the questions in advance. However, we can always pretend and have fun with the scenario of a young entrepreneur sitting in class nervously biting on their pencil. They are ready to take a pop quiz on a chapter that they were supposed to read the night before. Instead, they played Metroid all night on their SNES (Oops, this was me in high school). The real purpose of the pop quiz is that this is a fun way to introduce business tips from real-world experiences that you can not learn in a classroom. We want to thank our entrepreneur for being a good sport and volunteering their time to answer a few questions to help our community grow from their knowledge.
I want to introduce you to our guest today, who will be taking our Pop Quiz Monday.
1. Can you please tell everyone your name?
2. Tell us about your business and what you do?
I am the President and Co-Founder of Objective Ed, an organization providing students with disabilities educational games to achieve the best educational outcomes, and the CEO and Founder of Blindfold Games, now a division of Objective Ed.
I am also the author of No Investors? No Problem: A Serial Bootstrapper’s Playbook for Breakthrough Success on a Shoestring Budget (2019). The book teaches young entrepreneurs key lessons on how to bootstrap their company in lieu of raising investment. I draw from my own experiences in the business world to explain why bootstrapping makes more sense, and the value of delaying fundraising until an entrepreneur has removed most of the risk for investors.
3. Why did you want to become an entrepreneur?
This was accidental. When I was in my 20s, I saw an opportunity to create some software that could revolutionize the software computer industry when Silicon Valley first started producing microcomputers. While the company wasn’t much of a success, it taught me enough to have the confidence and experience to create other software companies, each focusing on solving important problems.
4. What are the challenging aspects of running a business?
Starting a business is akin to driving with one foot on the brake and one on the gas pedal. You never know what crisis is around the next corner, or what opportunity is about to fall into your lap. But, as with all things, the harder you work, the luckier you get.
The challenge is in continually solving problems on a shoestring budget, without sacrificing what’s important to the stakeholders of the business.
5. What do you love most about your job?
The intellectual challenge of turning “nothing” into something important that improves people’s lives. While you may not realize the impact you are having, as an entrepreneur, you are improving the world a little bit at a time.
6. How do you have fun at work (team building, pranks, etc..)?
Our team has known each other for a while, and we’ve become friends over the years. We can easily switch from “work-mode” to “play-mode.”
7. What would one piece of advice that you give to a new business owner?
Look in the mirror and make sure you possess a mix of passion, creativity, and persistence. You’ll need this combination to power you down the road that leads to an accomplished business. Those who are already successful will be more than willing to help you, but they need to know you are worth their time—so it is up to you to demonstrate this to them with your passion. Also, the more competitive your industry, the more obstacles you will face.
The key to overcoming them is being creative in how you approach and overcome obstacles, and then persisting in the face of repeated setbacks. Persistence is the never-quit attitude that gives you the strength and resolves to try enough new strategies and ideas until you find one that puts you on the right path.
Together, these forces are a powerful combination to get under, around over, or through any barrier that shows up on that bumpy road to fulfilling your passionately conceived, ambitious, and close-to-your-heart business venture.
Thank you for taking our pop quiz today. You get an A+ for effort. You can learn more about our interviewee and their business by visiting them on the web: