Invention 2 Venture: Linda Feltman

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Linda Feltman has worked with the Penn State SBDC as the senior business consultant since April 1999. Prior to joining the SBDC staff, over the course of twenty years, she was involved in several small business start-ups as a principal or owner. She has authored a column for Pennsylvania Magazine since 1992 and is the author of several books. She has been an adjunct faculty member in Penn State's College of Communications since 2005. Linda was the recipient of the 2008-2009 College of Communications' Deans' Excellence Award for Outstanding Faculty Associate. Currently, she is the advisor for a new Penn State student organization, Happy Valley Communications.

Linda is a 1976 graduate of Penn State, earning a bachelor's degree in Advertising. Prior to that, she attended the University of Montreal (Canada) and the College of Dupage, Glen Ellyn, Ill. She studied abroad in 1976 attending the University of Manchester. Although she enjoys living in her adopted state of Pennsylvania, she occasionally visits the Chicago suburb where she grew up to reconnect with family and friends.

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Invention 2 Venture: Linda Feltman

  1. 1. Building Your Team Learning to Reach Out Presented by: Linda Feltman Business Consultant (additional slides on E2 & P2 courtesy of PSU SBDC EMAP)
  2. 2. So what is an SBDC? •  The SBDC’s are located nationwide – over 1000 offices serve all 50 states. •  Assistance is free and confidential. •  In the state of PA all consultants must have direct small business experience •  At the PSU SBDC we work every day with student entrepreneurs. L Feltman, October 2009
  3. 3. What’s up with all this team stuff? •  Success rate increases exponentially with the right mix of partners •  Life is too short to work with people you don’t like •  Recognize that as good as you are – you don’t know it all and you need to fill in the blanks L Feltman, October 2009
  4. 4. Why a Team? •  Good advice from Guy Kawasaki, who states in his book, The Art of the Start, “Find a few soul mates. Successful companies are started and made successful by at least two, usually more soul mates. One person may come to be recognized as the innovator, but it takes a team of good people to make any venture work.” L Feltman, October 2009
  5. 5. So what’s next? •  If you’re bootstrapping it, forget the high end dream team. Instead look for: •  Affordable or free (i.e. SBDC’s, SCORE etc) •  An evangelistic attitude toward your business •  Raw talent and energy •  Enthusiasm and Passion may trump ignorance L Feltman, October 2009
  6. 6. Finding Your Best Friends •  Resources: Faculty, Entrepreneurs, SBDC •  Choose Infected People and be willing to share •  Understand your goal is not so much to retain control as it is to build a good organization. •  Lawyers and CPA’s are a good thing. •  Change happens. Be prepared. “Times change, people change, organizations change” Guy Kawasaki L Feltman, October 2009
  7. 7. You have the Team – but is your business E and P Savvy? What is Energy Efficiency (E2)? Energy efficiency is reducing the use of non-renewable energy forms such as electricity and natural gas. E2 lowers operating costs and contributes to your bottom line without affecting productivity or safety and improves environmental quality. L Feltman, October 2009
  8. 8. What is Pollution Prevention (P2)? Pollution prevention, commonly referred to as "P2," is an approach to environmental management that focuses on preventing waste at its source by increasing efficiency in the use of raw materials, energy, water, and other natural resources. Often, employing P2 strategies can lead to significant cost savings in operation. L Feltman, October 2009
  9. 9. How Can P2 and E2 Help My Business? Pollution prevention and energy efficiency are not just luxuries or “environmental things”. They can:  Reduce regulatory burden  Reduce operating costs  Reduce exposure to liability  Improve employee safety  Improve productivity  Improve quality management systems  Improve public image and provide better environmental protection L Feltman, October 2009
  10. 10. E2 Examples   Provide basic maintenance to refrigerator coils and air compressors   Close blinds during sunny summer days and after sunset in the winter   Install programmable thermostats ($25 to $100)   Clean or replace the air filter on your warm air heating system ($15)   Install compact fluorescent light bulbs in the fixtures you use the most ($10)   Seal and insulate heating and cooling ducts   Have heating and cooling systems tuned up every couple of years   Insulate hot water pipes in unheated basements or crawlspaces   Install insulating shades for windows or add insulating storm windows   Install occupancy lighting sensors in infrequently used rooms   Turn down the water heater thermostat to 120°F   Set thermostats to 68°F in winter when you are open, and down to 55°F when you are away L Feltman, October 2009
  11. 11. P2 - Examples Change material purchasing and control methods – Reduce the types of products that serve the same function – Rotate stock from back of shelves to avoid expiration before use – Buy appropriately sized containers Improve housekeeping – Keep storage areas clean and organized – Immediately return unacceptable items if delivered – Repair leaks to prevent loss – Can be implemented quickly with little or no capital investment L Feltman, October 2009
  12. 12. Energy Resources The Small Business Development Center’s (SBDC) Environmental Management Assistance Program (EMAP) (877-ask-emap) Small Business Ombudsman (www.epa.gov/sdo) 717-772-5942 PA DEP (www.dep.state.pa.us) EPA Energy Star® (www.energystar.gov) L Feltman, October 2009
  13. 13. Cool Books on Entrepreneurship •  The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki •  The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur by Mike Michalowicz •  Passion to Profits by Rhonda Abrams •  So what? who cares? why you?™ The inventors commercialization Toolkit by Wendy Kennedy www.wendykennedy.com L Feltman, October 2009
  14. 14. Thanks for listening! Questions? L Feltman, October 2009

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