Co-Founder of Blue Belt Technologies
ATTRACT CURIOUS CREATIVE PEOPLE
“Far and away, the number one essential element needed to maximize the opportunity for an entrepreneur to be successful is to surround yourself with exceptional people – talented, committed, smart and creative people. We worked to bring people in with that spirit, and built a culture committed to curiosity and creativity. This enabled us to explore different paths to commercialize our technology, and helped us survive through good times and bad.”
BALANCE AUTONOMY WITH A SHARED VISION
“To build a productive organization, you need to get out of your people’s way. Give them the tools and resources they need as well as the autonomy and authority to facilitate change. Resist the temptation to micromanage people. Acknowledge there’s more than one way to achieve success. Why have great people unless you let them be great?
PROTECT THE CULTURE
No one at Blue Belt ever said ‘That isn’t my job’. The ability to create a culture is unique to a startup and we built our culture centered on collaboration and teamwork. Building a company and achieving success is not easy but having the right attitude and approach will improve your chances to be successful. It definitely paid off for Blue Belt, we all shared in the company’s success.
“Know from the start that nothing will go according to plan. We launched the company with a well thought out and reasonable 3 year commercialization plan to get to our exit and it worked flawlessly – other than it took 13 years. As an entrepreneur you must be tenacious, persistent and creative because the ground will be pulled out from under you every day.
“A leader needs the right attitude and perspective. It’s not about you, it’s about the team and the mission. Check your ego at the door and don’t be greedy since nothing can kill a company faster than ego and greed. We had 3 co founders and we each brought unique skills to the company. We complimented each other and worked hard together to keep the company on track
“Blue Belt and the PLSG both launched around the same time – we grew up together. We took advantage of everything the Greenhouse had to offer – financing, consultation, networking, resources, and expertise. The Greenhouse was a great partner and we value our relationship with PLSG to this day. We shared the same mission – launch great companies and build western PA’s life sciences industry to be a leader and destination for the industry.