Professor Lucia Georghiu and Professor Stephen Bryant speak to the preparation and determination necessary to starting a business.
For centuries, people have come to America to experience the freedom this country represents. It is often said that anyone, no matter who they are, can succeed in this country. In this era where few ideas seem original, many still aspire to “make it” through their inventions, business plans, and other projects.
To harness the potential success, one might achieve in this country (particularly in business) one must know how to sell ideas. In today’s media, we cover what is happening in the now, without speculation of the future. Becoming successful as an entrepreneur opens up a world of possibilities for those who seek to change the world or their own community at least.
As a professional, one can learn greatly from businessmen and businesswomen with experience. This can provide a strong foundation for one’s professional career along with the core lessons learned on the job. Professor Stephen E. Bryant and Professor Lucia Gheorghiu provided valuable insights into entrepreneurship, emphasizing the freedom and responsibility that are balanced within the job.
Professor Stephen E. Bryant, an EOF administrator and Public Speaking instructor, gained substantial experience in business, as the founder of Strategic Educational Concepts Incorporated. Bryant’s enterprise was centered around the advisement of prospective and current college students. He and his team specialized in the application, enrollment, financial, and retainment processes.
Bryant expanded, “I think entrepreneurship is a great thing because it gives you freedom in terms of time, but…you have more accountability because, instead of having one supervisor, you have many.”
One of the several fascinating aspects surrounding the founding of “ Strategic Educational Concepts” was how the need arose naturally, and how Bryant seamlessly transitioned into providing a need no longer just as a college administrator, but as an independent professional. “As a college administrator at Monmouth University…I took those strategies and applied them in a broader context to deal with students,” Bryant elaborated.
This natural expansion of interest into work coincides with Professor Lucia Gheorgiu’s guidance. Professor Gheorgiu, Ph. D, has been professor at PCCC for fifteen years. Gheorgiu has taught business courses with a Marketing emphasis in the United States and Europe since 1992. A freelance marketing consultant, Gheorgiu has a Ph. D in Marketing from the Bucharest University of Economic Studies. Outside of educating, she is the sole proprietor of her own practice/service.
“Find something that you love. If you are freelance, and you start your own business…(you) definitely have to like the job. You (also) have to have some expertise and knowledge to do it. You have to prepare yourself professionally.” Gheorgiu recommended.
Easing yourself into the process is considered wise; as impassioned as some projects may be. Smart and slow work seems to ensure longevity more than a fast-paced start. Gheorgiu mentioned, “(When) you gain confidence to do things right, then you can start asking questions and do your own research or ask for professional help in how to really start doing the business.”
In starting up a business, courage and clarity seem to be key. “There may be schools with entrepreneurship (programs)…(but) entrepreneurship is a state of mind. It’s not a degree. So, if you want to study entrepreneurship, be careful…because you may end up spending a lot of money for no reason. So, you have to be very critical…” Gheorgiu cautioned.
Bryant emphasized the importance of choosing the project name wisely. “Well, I learned that preparation is necessary. Preparation is the key to success. The prerequisite of passion needs to be preparation. You must prepare properly,” he advised.
With this wise council, entrepreneurship may lose its charismatic appeal, but the advantages of being your own boss are definite. Bryant recalls, “One day I was in L.A. Next thing I was in Dallas. Next in Miami. Next day I’m in Michigan. It’s a lot of fun.” Travelling the world seems very glamorous and ideal, but the changes made while designing, launching, and running a new business run deeper than that.
“Once you generate revenue for yourself, you’re never, ever the same again. Your whole world, your whole outlook is going to be totally different once you do that. Your whole perspective on life changes,” Bryant recalled, “I never look at people the same way. CEO’s, Presidents…I don’t look at them like I used to look at them. (Now) I know I can do that.”
As a great man once said, with freedom comes responsibility. Gheorgiu echoes that perspective by stating, “Sometimes, as an entrepreneur, you have to make decisions for the business to survive, and when you hire people, you have responsibility over their families, right? When you start compromising in order to make money…you are against your own truth. It is very difficult to live in this time, where money dictates everything, and money makes more money.”
These are truly wise words. Not only in launching a business, but in almost any field you must sell your ideas. The practical side of gaining people’s trust can seem simple, but simple does not mean easy. Young students and professionals, remember that the long-term investments often reap the most reward.