Monday, November 30, 2009

A Day in the Life of an Entrepreneur

Hi there! My name is Kevin Uland; I am a 4th year student at The Ohio State University here in Columbus, a new associate of Social Boomerang and working part-time at the Dublin Entrepreneurial Center (DEC). As an aspiring entrepreneur, I feel lucky to spend time here at The DEC with successful startup companies, local business leaders, and witnessing inspiring developments. Just recently, I tagged along for a day with one of the newest tenants at the DEC, Andrew Spott, founder and owner of an up-and-coming integrated web agency named Vivid Front. I recorded my time with Andrew and decided to share my experience living the life of an entrepreneur at the DEC.

Although Andrew begins his day preparing like many other business leaders, his unique experience happens when he arrives at the DEC. Unlike many other offices, the DEC offers advantages for startup businesses, “The difference is in the people who work here,” Andrew says. When I asked him to name a unique feature of the DEC, Andrew replied, “The people here are building actual businesses, not just a lifestyle.”

During our interview, Andrew indicated he moved into his office on the 4th floor less than three weeks ago, but felt welcomed right away. “The tenants help support each other,” says Spott, when describing how Andrew Moon of Network Logix offered up an extra office desk at move-in.

According to Andrew, he is forming great partnerships with other tenants like Sandy Blanquera, also a DEC consultant. She introduced Andrew to new revenue and new partnership opportunities with a tenant just a few doors down. We also met with one of Andrew’s newest partnerships, Lori Crock, the founder and lead writer of WrittenImpact, “Lori has a good handle on things – the content she put together was spot-on, unique, and refined, which is what web content needs to be,” Spott stated in reference to Lori’s work.

After sitting down with Andrew and Lori, we were casually interrupted by Mike Bowers of the Small Business Development Center, as he asked for some help with web work and web advertising – two of Andrew’s strengths. So we headed over and joined Mike and a member of the DEC Virtual Community and business startup owner, Timecha Swain of Slapstik Entertainment. After receiving some insight from Andrew, Timecha replied, “You’ve been very helpful and have given me a lot of options to consider!” The DEC is an excellent resource for any business startup seeking professional help.

I observed as Andrew used Skype to communicate project details with employees, got advice from other business owners on chat and worked on a client project. I mentioned how the multi-tasking seemed effortless. Spott replied, “When you own your own business, you are always working, always communicating and always on.”

I also had a chance to join Andrew and Sandy in a meeting where they drafted some educational events for small business owners. Andrew will be conducting a few workshops on the use of Facebook pages, blogging and E-marketing for greater online exposure. “Connecting with customers has a viral nature. It’s important that everyone understands and utilizes this concept,” Andrew states. These events will be held at the DEC first quarter of 2010 and offered at no cost.

At the end of the day, I recounted the discussion and happenings: one free desk, a meeting with a new DEC partner, a meeting with a potential client, working on client projects and creating opportunities to give back to the small business community by hosting some training. All-in-all, it was an interesting day living the life of an entrepreneur out at the DEC. I could see the role the DEC plays in assisting small businesses succeed. I can’t wait to see what new opportunities lay ahead of me as I hang out here. Tune in for more later…Kevin Uland


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