Dallas Startup Week: Mentors Guide Entrepreneurs

mentor

BUSINESS VETERANS OFFER ADVICE DURING SESSION


Today’s Dallas entrepreneurship ecosystem has created an environment where competition is overshadowed by collaboration. Now, local entrepreneurs are taking industry insight from seasoned professionals and applying it to their own businesses through the mentor sessions at Dallas Startup Week.

Emmanuel Obi, a Dallas Startup Week mentor, insists mentorship is instrumental.

“The reality of success in today’s world as an entrepreneur comes down to teamwork,” he said.

Young entrepreneurs listen to a mentor at Dallas Startup Week. (Photos by Michael Gordon)

Young entrepreneurs listen to a mentor at Dallas Startup Week. (Photos by Michael Gordon)

The Cycle of Mentorship

Obi consulted Dallas entrepreneurs Thursday afternoon during a Dallas Startup Week mentor session.

Influencers in the Dallas business community and leaders such as John Knight, vice president and business banking area manager for JPMorgan Chase, volunteered to offer consulting and sound legal advice.

“As a banker and mentor this is an amazing opportunity to give back to the Dallas entrepreneur community,” Knight said. “The majority of people contributing to Dallas Startup Week don’t get paid. You don’t have to beg people to give back to the community. It’s a beautiful cycle of contribution that makes Dallas unique.”

“As a banker and mentor this is an amazing opportunity to give back to the Dallas entrepreneur community.” – John Knight

Knight encouraged mentees to keep their business models as simple as they could. He said sometimes, early stage business owners can make it hard on themselves by not being able to articulate their idea, no matter how complex it is.

“No matter how complex it is you need to keep your business model as simple as possible,” Knight said. “If you can’t create revenue and profit then it isn’t a business.”

He said entrepreneurs have to be able to constantly make things simpler.

Entrepreneurs Gain Industry Insight

Mentorship for entrepreneurs in Dallas is quickly gaining popularity as industry leaders guide small business owners to encourage business development.

Tisha Vaidya, founder of Pratiksha Fine Jewelry and a mentee at Dallas Startup Week, who started her business in Philadelphia, Pa. while in graduate school, said she is astounded by the resources in Dallas dedicated to the entrepreneurial community.

“This opportunity gave me a significant lead to go run with and not incur crazy cost,” Vaidya said.

“This opportunity gave me a significant lead to go run with and not incur crazy cost.” –Tisha Vaidya

She said mentorship can help save entrepreneurs by cutting costs and shed light on holes in a poorly constructed plan.

 

“Often times as an entrepreneur you have an idea that you feel compelled to run with,” Vaidya said. “Getting mentored allows you to assess if you will achieve your end result.”

Top 5 Mentor Tips for Small Business

Here are some of the best tips offered by mentors at Dallas Startup Week;

Contracts

“Be conscious of your contracting in terms of the contracts you are signing, practice good corporate hygiene.” – Emmanuel Obi, Dallas Startup Week Mentor

Be Systematic

“Be able to transfer your passion into a tangible plan, sticking with it and staying accountable.” – Obi

Have a Game Plan

“You have to have a game plan for what you’re doing, understand how it translates into the short and long term.” – Obi

Keep it Simple

“Keep it as simple as you can, if you can’t create revenue and profit then it is not a business.” – John Knight, Chase vice president

Invest in the Community

“There are over 5000 participants in Dallas Startup Week, that’s a massive community to tap into.”  – Knight


Schedule for Friday, April 15
Schedule for Saturday, April 16


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