Posts Tagged ‘Entrepreneurism’


Who do you use to search the Web with? Chances are you use Google, Bing or Yahoo. Perhaps you are familiar with a lesser-known search engine, such as Ask, Dogpile, Lycos, AltaVista or Excite. (Wow, remember Excite? Apparently it had an opportunity to buy Google—before it was Google—and passed up the opportunity. Whoopi-daisy.) By the way, reading about the rise and fall of each of these companies is rather fascinating, but don’t take my word for it. I certainly won’t administer a pop quiz later when you least expect it... with dire consequences if you fail. Of course not! But hey, moving on, one could easily see that the American online search market is, while dominated by the big three, quite saturated. One could also suspect it would be a literal fool’s errand to enter into this lion’s den and to expect to be a game changer. Apparently 90s-era hip-hop artist MC Hammer has other ideas.

That’s right, MC Hammer is Too Legit to Quit, and since 2009 he has been pushing forward with the launch of forthcoming search engine, WireDoo.com. A grade-schooler could whip out a real zinger from that name, so I’ll just leave it alone. (Ha, who am I kidding! Doo!) During the Web 2.0 Summit on October 19, our blast-from-the-past MC Hammer explained that he and his team have developed a search engine that will offer deeper searches than Google.  Furthermore, the search results will also be populated with information from relative topics of interest. You can even sign up to take the Beta site on a test drive, if you’re brave (or cynical like me.) But, should Google be scared? Maybe… but maybe not.

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When was the last time you saw monkey bars, seesaws or tall slides at the playground?  According to The New York Times, anything that is remotely risky at the playground is disappearing.  But professors and researchers are saying that risky play is important to our development as children.  Many are arguing that the thrills and learning associated with taking risks and mastering challenges at an early age is an essential part of human development.  By gradually exposing children to more dangers at the playground, children learn how to tackle challenges and issues.  Risky play is potentially essential.

Picture: Bruce Magilton, Herald Sun

I personally believe that this concept of risk runs parallel in the workplace.  If work is too easy and doesn’t include enough risk we get bored and stop learning.  Like on the playground, safety is important (we can’t take risks at our clients expense for example), but too much safety limits creative thinking and professional development.  At CJP, we try and offer entrepreneurial opportunities to our employees partially because these kinds of experiences provide a level of risk that is exciting, fresh and new.  Entrepreneurs get to take risk everyday in their work and they reap the rewards and exhilaration of that risk.  Recently, for example, one of our CJP entrepreneurs lobbied me with the idea of hosting a major media party for 200 journalists.  We had never done this before.  Because of his enthusiasm and confidence, we supported the idea despite the risks; which included a fairly hefty investment, RSVP-risk etc.

Well, the idea turned out to be a huge success with 215 journalists attending our first ever CJP Journalist Party.  The individual who proposed the high risk, high reward idea ultimately got to experience the rewards of success which included high praise from his clients, the media and his peers.

Earlier this week we held our annual summer offsite and one of the main messages I tried to express to our team is that at CJP you are encouraged to take risks, to follow your passions and career dreams.  The New York Times article this week made me think, what I am really trying to do at CJP is to provide a playground of sorts to our “kids”; A place that is safe enough to avoid a near death experience, but not safe enough to prevent a broken arm here or there.  A place where you can challenge yourself every day by reaching for a higher rung on a jungle gym where the highest up opportunities provide the most learning.  And if you haven’t lost that kid-like sensibility, like the playground, it also should be a place where you have fun and make friends along the way! CJP


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Last week IBM researchers announced they’ve created a high-speed circuit from graphene, an ultra-thin material that has a host of promising applications, from high-bandwidth communication to a new generation of low-cost smartphone and television displays.  Scientists from around the world see this as a major breakthrough, something that could revolutionize the computer industry.

Why did this technical story make me smile so wide?  It’s world-recognized innovations like these that keep my faith in the future of the United States alive.  Despite the dour news about our country’s future, as an entrepreneur, I continue to believe that in this country anything is possible; and the Facebooks, Twitters, IBMs and Googles make me believe we still corner the market on innovation and entrepreneurism.

I recently attended the Yale CEO Forum where leaders were clearly concerned about this country’s future.  With our debt levels, healthcare issues, etc., it would be crazy not to be. But the CEOs and academics outside of the United States were much more optimistic about the leadership role American will continue to play in the future and its overall success.  It warmed my heart.  As immigrants to the U.S., my parents programmed me to believe that the U.S. is the most fertile ground for self-starting success, and for me it turned out to be the truth.

But recently I have worried that my daughter’s United States may not resemble mine. So, IBM, from me to you: a big “thank you” for making me smile about the future of our great country.  I will do my part, as long as you keep doing yours. CJP


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Army of EntrepreneursCJP was named among the top 10 most entrepreneurial companies in New York City by the New York Enterprise Report last week.

This is a huge honor and something I am personally very proud of.  For years, I have striven to bring out the entrepreneur within each person at our firm.  And I have seen people do the most incredible things.  Among our ranks we have folks who have built departments, launched new products, revamped our recruiting efforts and managed our social media presence.  They have cared deeply for our company and for their careers and, along the way, became so much more than employees, they are engaged intrapreneurs.  We call our owner-like model the “Army of Entrepreneurs” and we are not alone.  Companies like Virgin Atlantic have embraced this same philosophy.  In our history we have received many awards for our work, but personally, this accolade is among the most gratifying because of what motivates me to come to work every day -- working with a team of ambitious people that I can inspire to do even greater things than they believed were possible.

Developing human potential is the psychic income that keeps me engaged and inspired every day.  On June 22, I will have the pleasure of speaking on this topic at the New York Enterprise Report’s event entitled “Beyond Motivation:  Ignite Your Employees and Watch Profits Grow.”

Hope you’ll join us. CJP


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Happy Entrepreneurship Day! Ok, ok, we may have made that up for dramatic effect, but you’ll have to excuse our excitement as we celebrate the release of “Army of Entrepreneurs: Create an Engaged and Empowered Workforce for Exceptional Business Growth.” As was discussed on Unboxed Thoughts earlier this week, Army of Entrepreneurs is the brainchild of CJP’s CEO Jennifer Prosek and it hits bookstands today!

Interestingly, the release of book follows the publishing of an entrepreneurship survey put out by Buzz Marketing Group and the Young Entrepreneur Council (it was sponsored by LegalZoom). The study, which surveyed 1,623 GenYers  (“The Millennials”), sought to explore how this generation of business professionals’ views entrepreneurism. In sum, the data showed that 1) GenYers are incredibly interested in starting their own businesses and 2) they overwhelmingly believe that entrepreneurship education is important.

To be honest, this information did not strike me as new and different. We have all heard the stories about the Millennials (and I am one) haven’t we? They are self absorbed. Tech savvy with an astute ability to multitask. They have shorter attention spans, but think creatively.  Often referred to as the “Me Generation,” the demographic has a need for instant – and sustained – gratification and praise. So it’s not shocking to me that this group would want to own their own business and call their own shots.

What I did find interesting from the survey was this:

  • 89% believe that entrepreneurship education is important given the new economy and job market
  • Only 29% had been offered a class on entrepreneurship
  • 72% said those classes did not adequately prepare them to start a business
  • 73% of respondents were not offered any classes on entrepreneurship in college

From this, it is clear that GenY is eager to learn, eager to take classes and become scholars of entrepreneurism. This is great… but also incredibly flawed. To me this data says, “I want someone to be offered the opportunity to learn” or “I want to be given an opportunity.” If this is your mentality, I question whether or not you truly have an entrepreneur’s mindset.

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