Inspiration & AdviceFrom Dreaming to Doing: 15 Tips from 15 Successful Local Entrepreneurs

2014 OEN Summit
On June 6, 2014, over 200 community members gathered at The Kennedy School for OEN’s 2014 Entrepreneurial Summit.

“So you’re an entrepreneur with a dream.  It’s a pretty big club you’ve just joined.  But the club of folks who have actually graduated past the dream stage, and created a living, thriving business, is much, much smaller.”

That’s how Terry “Starbucker” St. Marie kicked off our 2014 Entrepreneurial Summit: The School of Hard Knocks. “There’s a big difference, then,” he continued, “between the dreamers and the doers.”

So, what is that difference? Over the course of the day, 15 successful local entrepreneurs tackled this core question as they related their personal stories and lessons learned the hard way.

Of the many great pieces of advice that our speakers offered, three surfaced again and again—take risks, get help, and don’t give up.

So if you’re paralyzed by fears of risking it all, going it alone, and ultimately, of failing, here’s some inspiration to move you from dreaming to doing:

“Coach more. Shoot less.”

– Jim Plymale, Clinicient

“The more you learn, the less you know.”

– Andras Gruber

“Find your network to help you navigate the rough waters of running a company.”

– Lindsey Hammond Charlet, HUB Collective

“Wisdom is only helpful to the extent that you can adapt it your experience.”

– Natalie Ramsland, Sweetpea Bicycles

“Part of the reason people help me is because I ask. Be willing to ask for help, be willing to help others.”

– Greg Bell, Water The Bamboo

“Bring other people into your business. Don’t try to control everything.”

– Micah Camden, Blue Star Donuts, Little Big Burger

“Listening to the best people and using the best tools is critical to doing something awesome.”

– Marshall Kirkpatrick, Little Bird

“It seems that whenever something comes up, the door opens. I am never sure which door, but it opens.”

– Betsy Langton, Betsy’s Best Bar None

“Only you can define the amount of risk you are willing to take.”

– Ted Pappas, Big Bottom Whiskey

“You must have confidence to take creative risks. Humility helps us learn from the mistakes we dare to make.”

– Sam Pardue, Indow Windows

“It’s not the idea that is brilliant, it’s the implementation that is brilliant.”

– Cory Carman, Carman Ranch

“Find a way over, under, around, and through the walls. Quitting is not an option.”

– Emma Mcilroy, Wildfang

“Perseverance is the only correlation to success.”

– Luke Kanies, Puppet Labs

“Passion and persistence is the name of the game.”

– Molly Lindquist, Consano

“Don’t underestimate the power of perseverance.”

– Sean Beers, Korkers


For more quotes and lessons learned, click here to see our full recap of the event.

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