Among all of the amazing quotes I’ve heard and read over the years from inspirational people who are at the peak of their careers, the most important quote came to me at last night’s Black Student Union (BSU) panel with alumni and special guests. In honor of Black History month, BSU hosted the 4th annual Panel event, an interactive discussion with panelists who have made it their goals in life to become entrepreneurs and turn their ideas of design, art, and fashion into something that can be received by the masses.
The panel featured Ken Borochov (Fashion Design ’04), designer of the accessories/adornment line Mordekai; Kimberly Goldson, creator of the line Kimberly Goldson (FMM ’01); Rob Norman (Advertising Design ’94) a professor here at FIT and owner of two clothing lines; Princess Jenkins, owner of the Brownstone; and Bo Williams, Partner in Hildene Leveraged Finance. All of these people spoke on what it takes to start a business, the hardships that will occur, the trials they went through in the process of trying to relay their vision and ideas to investors and customers, and an abundance of other things within the realm of entrepreneurship; but the few words that stuck out for me was the quote from Bo Williams, “The 6 S’s to Success”.
The S’s are composed of: Script, Swag, Study, Strikes, Stamina, and Start, all relating to the process of being in management and marketing.
Script is basically your pitch and how well you can convey your ideas in a concise manner to your investors and customers.
Swag is all about your confidence and self-esteem when you’re pitching an idea and whether or not you are timid or take charge.
Study encompasses the knowledge you hold about your business plan down to the minute details and the knowledge of your intended field.
Strike and any businessman or woman knows that no success is obtainable without your fair share of downfalls. The only question is will you able to recover and keep on striving toward your goal and that is where the “S” of Stamina comes into play. And after all of that comes the most important part:
Start, which basically means are you able to be involved and get the business of the ground.
The entire panel offered up great advice, from Princess on the act of locating your target customer and following the “80/20” rule, Ken on building relationships and networking, Rob on “thinking big, and acting big”, to Kimberly on engaging in social media. The 6 S’s, though, are what all the panelists followed in order to be where they are today.
As a student, hearing from alumni and other special guests last night was amazing. As I go out into NY for internships and interviews, I will remember to be proactive and modest but most importantly keep in mind those key S words: Script, Swag, Study, Strikes, Stamina, and Start, and success is guaranteed.