Entrepreneur Interview


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After interviewing Jerry Smith, a social entrepreneur in Detroit, Michigan, I made a narrated PowerPoint displaying the information I gained through the interview.

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Entrepreneur Interview

  1. 1. Amy Grabowski<br />Entrepreneurial Communication<br />Dr. Cristina Gilstrap<br />July 29, 2011<br />Jerry Smith: The Baking Friar<br />
  2. 2. Jerry Smith – Executive director<br />Friar and Baker<br />Capuchin Soup Kitchen (sponsor of On the Rise Bakery)<br />Serves people with mental illness, substance abuse, physical disabilities, limited education, and low self-esteem<br />Provides meals and clothing<br />Detroit, Michigan<br />http://www.cskdetroit.org/<br />© On the Rise Bakery, 2011<br />
  3. 3. Demographic questionnaire summary<br />Male<br />63 years old<br />Single<br />No children<br />Capuchin Soup Kitchen and On the Rise Bakery are social services<br />On the Rise Bakery started in 2006<br />67 employees in the food kitchen, 4-5 full-time bakers, 6 trainees<br />
  4. 4. History<br />The soup kitchen has been feeding people since 1929<br />Soup kitchen provides free food<br />The endeavor is run by friars<br />On the Rise Bakery was founded as a sister-service of the soup kitchen<br />Bakers are men who used to be homeless or imprisoned (see picture)<br />Smith’s close friend started the bakery<br />© On the Rise Bakery, 2011<br />
  5. 5. Metaphor<br />Smith says, “Being a social entrepreneur is like leaping into the deep end of the pool without knowing how to swim.”<br />Friars had no idea how to start and manage business<br />
  6. 6. Stories and narratives<br />Entrepreneurial story<br />Bakers sell food in retail store during week<br />Sell food to parishes after weekend services<br />Pastors allow bakers to tell their stories<br />Audience<br />Church groups, community groups, students<br />
  7. 7. Stories and narratives<br />Essential elements<br />Smith says, “People must realize that this is a vehicle for men to change their lives.”<br />Changing the story<br />Past – soup kitchen is a charity<br />Present – soup kitchen provides justice and change<br />
  8. 8. Leadership<br />Characteristics of a good social entrepreneur:<br />
  9. 9. Leadership<br />Characteristics of a good social entrepreneur leader<br />
  10. 10. Leadership <br />Stakeholders<br />Smith says the stakeholders include “The bakers themselves. The men who are coming out of incarceration or homelessness.”<br />The Capuchin Soup Kitchen<br />Donors<br />50 volunteers<br />© Capuchin Soup Kitchen, 2011<br />
  11. 11. Challenges<br />Unique challenges faced by social entrepreneurs<br />Funding – will never get conventional funding from a bank, most operate on donations and grants<br />Biggest challenges Smith has faced<br />Meeting the needs of the men in the program<br />Challenging the men<br />Finding a facility and renovating it<br />Marketing<br />
  12. 12. Uncertainties<br />Uncertainties<br />Money – Will we have enough money to keep going?<br />Strategies<br />Work with University of Michigan<br />Become more efficient<br />Screen men more thoroughly before they enter the program<br />Open new markets<br />
  13. 13. Risks<br />Risks<br />Challenges of funding – Afraid the bakery will be a burden on the soup kitchen<br />Ruining the reputation of the soup kitchen if something tragic were to happen with the bakery<br />
  14. 14. Risks<br />Strategies to handle risks<br />Talk to staff about how the bakery needs to protect the good name of Capuchin Soup Kitchen<br />Be very careful about who speaks to the public about the program and who works in the store<br />Open invitation for people to come and see what the bakery does<br />
  15. 15. Work-life balance<br />Challenges to balancing responsibilities<br />Bakers sleeping on Jerry Smith’s living room floor <br />Strategies to balance responsibilities<br />Develop specific hours that the bakery is open<br />Try not to take work home at night<br />Not having a cell phone (most effective – unavailable after work hours)<br />
  16. 16. Persuasion and compliance gaining<br />Essential communication skills<br />Effective public speaker :<br />
  17. 17. Persuasion and compliance gaining<br />Situations where persuasion skills are needed<br />Smith says, “I do a lot of speaking in front of groups. Some of the groups don’t have a lot of experience with people from the city, and so they have some preconceived notions about people who live in the city and people who are facing the kinds of situations from which we draw our bakers.”<br />
  18. 18. Persuasion and compliance gaining<br />Persuasive strategies<br />Communicating from the managerial perspective (least effective)<br />Asking people to come and visit the bakery<br />Having bakers share their experiences (most effective – people enjoy hearing first-hand testimonials)<br />A baker sharing a testimonial at a fundraiser<br />© On the Rise Bakery, 2011<br />
  19. 19. Advice<br />Look for a niche market<br />Something unique<br />Something for which there is possibility for success<br />Go for it<br />Dream<br />Think out of the box<br />See what happens<br />Don’t be afraid to fail<br />
  20. 20. Additional comment<br />Smith says, “This project [On the Rise Bakery] has captured the imagination of the people here. We’ve had tremendous support. The bakery is a breath of fresh air for the soup kitchen.”<br />
  21. 21. Conclusion<br />Funding is an ever-present need<br />Social entrepreneurs must have the ability to dream but also implement strategies for success<br />Apply knowledge gained from past experiences<br />