Spotlight Interview: Dave Mattson

Dave Mattson - Sandler Systems, Inc

Dave talks about innovation, learning from customers, and success in sales.

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Spotlight Interview: David Allen

David Allen - Getting Things Done

David talks about GTD and how it can help you, your business, and your success.

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Spotlight Interview: Gordon Logan

Gordon Logan - Sport Clips

Gordon talks about Sport Clips and the success of the franchise model he built.

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Jun17

Matt Munson
Matt Munson
Instacanvas
CEO & Co-Founder

Matt Munson is the captain of the ship at Instacanv.as and is involved in just about every aspect of the Instacanvas site. Instacanvas is a mobile photography marketplace that allows Instagram users to receive a free online gallery to sell their work as beautiful design objects. Casual Instagrammers can also turn their own photos into wall decorations, greeting cards, and more.

MO: Do you think that mobile photography is starting to gain credibility as an art form? If so, how do you anticipate this growing trend to evolve in the coming years?

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May3

Faith-1541-0111
Faith Amon
Frecklefoot Creative
Owner & Creative Director

Faith Amon is the founder of Frecklefoot Creative, a graphic design house and creative agency based in Orlando, Florida. Faith has a Master’s Degree in Communications from the University of Florida, and over 20 years of experience in design, photography and marketing. Over the last 10 years she has worked in 6 different countries consulting with CARE International to create collateral pieces, and shoot photographs that help to explain CARE’s complex humanitarian work. Faith was named among the Orlando Business Journal’s 40 under 40 in 2011, appeared in USA Toady and on the Today show in 2012 and was recently awarded top honors in the Women in Arts Show of Central Florida.

Frecklefoot Creative is a creative agency that focuses on brand storytelling. The Frecklefoot team utilizes an arsenal of creative inspiration and product leverage to bring brands to life. Over the past 9 years they have helped to build company brands to give them a unique voice in the marketplace. Where is YOUR freckle? Make your Mark.

MO: What inspired you to launch your own company instead of working for an established firm?

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Dec7

Tekin Tatar
Tekin Tatar
BeFunky
Founder

With an MBA from Sabanci University and 10 years of professional experience, Tekin Tatar has built his career around e-business, digital brand management, and interactive advertising. Prior to starting BeFunky in 2007, Tekin wore many hats as the Business Development Manager of McCann Relationship Marketing Turkey, a leading multinational company focusing on digital brand management.

After realizing one day that he was tired of working for someone else’s company, his passion for digital media led him to establish the company BeFunky and a team that will always feel funky.

Founded in 2007 by engineers and cartoonists with a unique desire to integrate art and technology, BeFunky’s photo editor was designed to be a fun, easy-to-use tool that helps you turn ordinary pictures into incredible works of art. Today BeFunky is not only the photo editor that gives people the most creative control, but it’s also the only one available across every platform, including phones and tablets for iOS and Android, and the web. BeFunky is more than just an app: It’s a digital dream come true for people ready to get creative with their photos at home or on-the-go!

MO: How did your background and previous experience help contribute to the direction and vision of BeFunky?

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Sep18

Photo Booth Guys
Matt Gassman & Jacob Stewart
The Traveling Photo Booth
Co-Founders

Matt Gassman and Jacob Stewart— one an architecture student, the other a budding photographer — cultivated their friendship throughout their college years, staying up late amidst the hazy afterglow of rowdy weekend nights and contemplating their respective futures.

Their aspirations weren’t limited to their majors, and an entrepreneurial spirit colored their conversations. While photographing a wedding reception, Jacob witnessed the popularity of an old photo booth the guests used to commemorate their special day. As the guests frolicked around the contraption, a flash went off in his head — “we could do that better.”

On a whim, he pitched the project of building a booth to Matt. They spent the following months designing and hammering out their booth, planning to showcase it at a year’s end holiday party.

The Traveling Photo Booth rents the Greatest Photo Booth’s in the Galaxy to private events such as weddings, corporate events, graduation parties, bar and bat mitzvahs and everything in between.

MO: Have both of you always had entrepreneurial spirits?

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Jul19

Entrepreneur Hannah Fernandez
Hannah Fernandez
WOW Memories
Co-Founder & Managing Director of Marketing

Hannah Fernandez lost half of her team in a massive wave of layoffs at Pfizer in 2009, which opened her eyes to the lack of job security in corporate America and fueled her drive to build a business, live her passion, and be in a greater position to help others. In November 2011, she too got laid off, but out of adversity comes opportunity. The layoff opened the door for her to escape the rat race and step into success, entrepreneurship, and leadership with a greater purpose. Now as cofounder and Managing Director of Marketing at WOW Memories, Hannah continually seizes and fosters her entrepreneurial mindset with the empowerment that comes with the knowing that she is now living her life’s calling, creating her own economy and a lifestyle she loves through business ownership, and building a legacy by giving back to the community.

WOW Memories is a Chicago-based company that transforms images into stunning WOW wall art by using proprietary software created by a former NASA engineer. The firm helps clients brand themselves and their businesses, capture once-in-a-life memories in timeless art, and bring out the artist in anyone.

MO: What’s the transition process been like to go from working at a corporate giant like Pfizer to building your own company from scratch?

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Jun19

Entrepreneur Anita Malik
Anita Malik
BrideRush
Founder

Inspired by her own ten-week engagement, Anita Malik founded BrideRush to help other brides in a rush make their wedding day as memorable and amazing as hers was.

BrideRush is a novel entry into the deal space. They are changing the model to make it work for the wedding industry and the growing trend in short engagements and busy brides. BrideRush offers last-minute, date-specific wedding deals on venues and vendors around the country. They call themselves the Hotwire or Priceline of weddings.

 

MO: How did your experience of planning a wedding shape the vision and direction of BrideRush? I am also curious how your own wedding turned out with only 10 weeks to plan. Where did the wedding take place and how challenging was it to find photographers, caterers, florists and a dress?

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Apr6

Ninja Dog
Bark Pet Photography
Sarah Sypniewski & Kim Rodgers
Co-Owners

Kim Rodgers went to college as a photography major, but left with a degree in graphic design. After putting down the camera for a few years to pursue a graphic design career, she decided it was time to get back into the photo world. So, she picked up a camera, pointed it in the direction of her dogs, and started shooting.

Kim quickly became obsessed with capturing great images of the animals around her – images that speak to each pet’s personality without becoming a cheesy portrait. Images that are artistic, sophisticated, and just plain cool-looking.

If Kim Rodgers is the face of Bark, Sarah Sypniewski is the tail. Sarah does a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff, like marketing, managing the business, writing their newsletter, blogging, and wrangling their subjects with a variety of treats, squeaky toys, and her winning personality.

Bark Pet Photography is a Los Angeles-based pet photography business with an underlying mission of giving back to local animal rescue organizations. Their work has been seen in places like the Wall Street Journal, TMZ, People Style Watch Magazine, and Dogs Today Magazine. Voted best pet photographer in the Los Angeles area in 2011, Bark Pet Photography has gone from a small idea to a full-fledged business and industry leader.

NinjaDog Concepts is a logistics company that provides 24/7 service to find lost dogs. They employ a combination of tactical strategy, ground operations, and technology to search for and recover missing pets when owners do not have the time or capacity to do it themselves.

MO: How did the two of you initially meet and what inspired you to open a business together?

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Mar21

Noelle Federico
Noelle Federico
Dreamstime
Business Manager & CFO

Noelle Federico has over 20 years of experience in all aspects of business management, finance and development as well as media relations, sales, branding and marketing. Noelle is the Business Manager and CFO of Dreamstime.com, LLC which is the third largest international online microstock photography company. Noelle has been with Dreamstime since its inception and has helped to develop its presence in the US. She handles all financial and business matters for the company.

Dreamstime is a distinguished leader in stock photography, a major supplier of high quality digital images to the world’s largest advertising agencies, national and international magazines, and film and television production companies. Almost 5 million users have access to 14 million images and illustrations, contributed by the agency’s 130,000 photographers.

MO: Can you talk about how you started Dreamstime? Did you solicit investors or raise the capital you needed in some other way?

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Mar13

Lori Johnson
Lori Johnson
Lori J Photography
Owner

Lori Johnson is a freelance photographer specializing in wedding photography, event coverage, and portraiture.

Lori J Photography provides wedding, event, and portrait photography to the Denver Metro Area, Colorado Mountain towns, and beyond. The goals of Lori’s services are to provide individuals with a means of art to show their expressions of their in lives and have fun doing it.

MO: When and how did you realize that you were passionate about photography? Who or what were your early inspirations?

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Mar8

Leslie Hoffman
Leslie Hoffman
Leslie Hoffman Photography
Portrait Photographer

For entrepreneurs and small business owners, business values are also personal values. Your personal core values define who you are and what you believe in and align your business with your true self. This way it is easier to identify your ideal clients, establish a relationship with them and build loyalty. Leslie Hoffman is a Southern California-based portrait photographer, who, like a fine wine, has invested years to reach an excellent level of quality. Many clients have been captured through her artful lens. The first question I posed to her, was how she chose just three core values to set the tone of her website.

Diane: On your website your landing page banner states: Sensitivity. Passion. Fun. These are obviously high on your Richter scale of values. Why did you choose these three values?

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Feb20

Mike Rheaume
Mike Rheaume
SnapKnot
Co-Founder

Mike Rheaume worked in marketing and advertising at a Boston firm for about 3.5 years before co-founding his current business SnapKnot, an online directory of wedding photographers which helps engaged couples find their perfect wedding photographer. A clean, photocentric design coupled with fast, easy search by location and budget range allows couples to find, save, and compare photographers who match their criteria, and then contact them directly for booking info. SnapKnot just turned 2 years old.

Couples no longer need to waste time wading through hundreds of irrelevant or misleading search results on the web, nor get overwhelmed by standard wedding sites cluttered with all sorts of vendors and distracting advertising. SnapKnot has unique wedding photography to match your individual needs. We want to make planning your wedding as fast, effortless, and painless – indeed, fun! – as possible.

MO: What was your inspiration for creating SnapKnot? What attracted you to the wedding photography market?

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