Triangle Entrepreneurship Week 2012: Triangle EW Kick-Off Event #TEW2012

Triangle Entrepreneurship Week 2012Welcome to this series of semi-live blogs from the Triangle Entrepreneurship Week 2012 (#TEW2012) conference in Raleigh and Durham, NC. Any errors, omissions, or silly side comments are my own.

Triangle EW Kick-Off Event

Presenter: Andy Albright, Co-Founder & CEO, National Agents Alliance

  • Spoke briefly about his role in entrepreneurship.
  • Had a great line, “We were made to run.”
    • What are you doing today to run?

Key Presenter: Grant Williard, Founder, Joulebug

  • Had played multiple roles in his venture, coding at the beginning of each day and selling at the end.
  • Six things he learned:
    1. When you see an opportunity seize it.
    2. Hire deliberately and develop a hiring network.
    3. Business is about finding happy customers.
    4. Pivots make lifelong learning critical.
    5. Develop contingency plans even when times are good.
    6.  Expect difficult negotiations.
  • He was not a good employee at Adobe. (Most true entrepreneurs are not.)

Key Presenter: Jesse Lipson, VP, GM of Data Sharing, Citrix Systems, Inc.

  • Entrepreneurs must at least have a business model.
  • Learnings:
    • Entrepreneurship is about long hours and deep commitment   It is a marathon, not a sprint.
    • Importance of core values.
    • importance of customer satisfaction.
  • Amazing & crazy things happen all the time.  However, The Facebooks of the world are the outliers.  Don’t expect to be a rock star  because most musicians don’t ever make it that big.
  • Try & succeed on a small scale first.  Start with a narrow focus, then expand.
  • Decided to be an entrepreneur as a lifestyle choice.

Key Presenter: Gerald Hall, Founder, President and CEO, SMT

  • Started off with a quote from J. Paul Getty, “My formula for success is rise early, work late, and strike oil.”
  • Had a reference to the 1980’s computer Epson (IBM Compatible .  I remember my Epson Equity I with is 5 1/2″ disk and like no memory.)
  • See where your product can fit into other industries.
  • John Irving quote, “I spend about two to three months planning the path of the book in my head before I write the last sentence of the novel. From there I work back to the beginning.”
    • Entrepreneurs should think the same way when creating your next opportunity for success.
  • Half-baked ideas do not work.  You need customers who value the product more than the value of the dollars in their pocket.
    • This is the Core essence of the products success.
–J. Nolfo helps companies understand their market and customers though a variety of market research strategies. He has over ten years of experience of market research for strategic planning purposes. He is the Director of Research at Rhino Market Research. He shares his thoughts about market research and business concepts with his blog “Pensare…Understanding Market Research in Business“. If you would like to discuss this blog or how J. can help you understand your market and customer needs, email him at

About J. Nolfo
Well...there is a lot to know. #Cx, #Analytics, #SM, Specialty #AgChem, #StL sports, & more. FT @BASFAgProducts. @Mizzou Alum. Supporter of the #Rhino. Tweets my own. #SMMW17 attendee....Dad...Hiker...Scouter...and so much more.

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