Monthly Archives: May 2013

Titan Toastmasters Club

The proven way to help you speak and lead. Toastmasters International, founded in 1924, is a proven product, regarded as the leading organization dedicated to communication and leadership skill development. As a member, you will gain all the tools, resources and support you need.

Through its worldwide network of clubs, Toastmasters helps nearly 280,000 people communicate effectively and achieve the confidence to lead others. Why pay thousands of dollars for a seminar or class when you can join a Toastmasters club for a fraction of the cost and have fun in the process?

The people of Titan Toastmasters

What’s in it for you? Toastmasters is a place where you develop and grow – both personally and professionally. You join a community of learners, and in Toastmasters meetings we learn by doing. Whether you’re an executive or a stay-at-home parent, a college student or a retiree, you will improve yourself; building skills to express yourself in a variety of situations. You’ll open up a world of new possibilities: giving better work presentations; leading meetings – and participating in them – more confidently; speaking more smoothly off the cuff; even handling one-on-one interactions with family, friends and colleagues more positively.

How does it work? The environment in a Toastmasters club is friendly and supportive. Everyone at a Toastmasters meeting feels welcome and valued – from complete beginners to advanced speakers. In a club meeting, you practice giving prepared speeches as well as brief impromptu presentations, known as Table Topics. There is no rush and no pressure: The Toastmasters program allows you to progress at your own pace.

Constructive evaluation is central to the Toastmasters philosophy. Each time you give a prepared speech, an evaluator will point out strengths as well as suggest improvements. Receiving – and giving – such feedback is a great learning experience. In Toastmasters, encouragement and improvement go hand-in-hand.

Come visit us. You won’t regret it. Toastmasters currently has more than 270,000 members in 116 countries. Our club is just one of the more than 13,000 clubs located around the world. For membership or meeting information, please see our visit Titan Toastmasters website at http://Titan.ToastmastersClubs.org.

By learning to effectively formulate, organize and express your ideas to others, you can achieve all kinds of success. You’ll be more capable and confident when giving presentations. You’ll be more persuasive when pitching prospective clients. Want to be better at negotiating your salary with your boss? Networking at business or social functions? Motivating co-workers – or your kids?

Good leaders are good communicators. Anyone who is a strong leader has to first be an effective communicator. In Toastmasters you will hone your speaking skills, and you will develop leadership abilities – through evaluations, listening, mentoring, serving as club officers and filling roles in club meetings. You will take those leadership skills out into the world, running businesses, mentoring youths, organizing fund-raisers, coaching teams and heading up families.

Don’t delay! Become the speaker and leader you want to be. Confident, charismatic leaders weren’t born that way. Toastmasters members learn to tell their story. They listen and answer. Through our community of learners, they find their path to leadership.

We meet on the 1st & 3rd Tuesdays of the month from 11:30 am to 12:45 pm in room PLS-360 of the Pollak Library. We hope to meet you there.

Need to Sell your Project?

This post was written by one of our excellent Entrepreneurs in Residence and mentor William Laird.

Most students are very busy in University learning their subjects. Researching details for a project or developing the details of their Business plan. In the end, they need to sell the results of their work to clients for acceptance or professors for a grade. It’s the same outside of the University when you are looking for a job.

When you finish your project, you and your team need to be prepared to speak, but speaking skills are not included in your course, and probably not required in your engineering or business curriculum. But speaking to sell yourself or your ideas is a critical soft skill you and your team need. How do you acquire this critical skill? Taking another class doesn’t seem to be an efficient method and is seldom focused on this skill of selling your ideas.

I have been assisting students in team projects for the past year. I pay special attention to their presentations at the end of their Spotlight Presentations or Project Presentations. I have made some observations I can share with you. I have been a Toastmasters for twenty years and I tend to evaluate speakers, evaluation is a critical skill practiced in a Toastmasters meeting.

TIPs for your team presentation based on my observations

Organization and Presentation:

  • Select a speaker for each section of the team’s presentation. (Each speaker should feel like he owns the subject area for presentation)
  • Establish a lead speaker as Master of Ceremonies (MC). (Usually the Team Leader)
  • Best if someone other than speaker to control the PowerPoint Presentation on the computer. (Needs Rehearsal) (Not required)
  • MC officially introduce the team members and their subject expertise in the presentation.
  • Have all but the first speaker sit down near the podium after introductions.
  • At completion of the first speaker’s presentation have either the MC or current speaker introduce the next speaker and the speakers subject and then be seated.
  • The MC should return to the podium for a strong close and a thanks to the team members. (Team members should rise)

Typical distractions to avoid:

  • Don’t look at the PowerPoint presentation on the projector screen.
  • Be still, don’t move, the only movement of feet or hands should be a gesture to highlight a point. (Example the Lincoln Exhibit at Disneyland.)
  • Avoid ‘hand talking’ or hand motions without purpose.
  • Be prepared well enough to make presentation without notes, looking at computer screen, or looking at the projector screen.
  • Avoid ‘Ahs’ and ‘Ums’ and other filler words.

Typical power presentation points:

  • Good eye contact, speak to the person you are looking at.
  • Know your subject and just talk about it.
  • Speak louder to make a point. (Vocal variety rather than monotone)
  • Find powerful gestures for key points. (Body movement, hand gesture, or facial expression.)

Many of these TIPS require practice, but practice begins with the next presentation.

Visit Titan Toastmasters Club website to learn more about Toastmasters.

Success Story: Joanne Vo ’11

Joanne Vo ’11

I have nothing but great words for the Center for Entrepreneurship.  The program was phenomenal and was played a substantial role in my self-growth as the entrepreneur that I am today.

Shortly after graduating in 2011, like all my peers, I was in search of what to do and pondered on what career path I was going to take. During my college career, I struggled between deciding what major to commit to. I jumped from Business Administration to Marketing and then to Finance; all of which I never felt fulfilled in. It wasn’t until I stumbled into my business counselor’s office and discovered the Entrepreneur Major that I subconsciously coveted.

In between juggling a full-time workload of school, I have always been very active in diving into the workplace for experience. I have always been into fashion and have held internships from different spectrums of the industry. I did sales at a fashion buying agency, then at a small independent fashion brand in downtown Los Angeles, a fashion PR company and then as an intern to an established fashion stylist.

At each one of my positions, I was able to excel greatly and make substantial impressions because of the knowledge I had gained while working on the consulting projects and the course work at CSUF. I was able to contribute ideas and solutions to problems that I have worked on with small business owners from our consulting projects. These consulting projects gave me a hands on approach and challenged me to seek more than what was shown. It taught me the most valuable lesson of all: what the essence of an entrepreneurial spirit is.

I am currently a co-founder and co-owner of Shop D&J, an online women’s retailer specializing in street chic fashion apparel and accessories. We launched in December 2012 and have slowly been progressing and expanding as we are fulfilling a niche and manifesting a permanent and respectable place in this industry. I feel so blessed and grateful for the opportunity and the support thus far.

I owe a lot of what I know and what I have done on my own to the Center for Entrepreneurship. They gave me the tools to be able to pave my own path and follow my dreams. Everything I learned has been my guiding foundation as I set forth on this journey to push this company to a level where it becomes a positive and influential impact to girls all around world.

Center for Entrepreneurship End of the Year Event 2013

Next Wednesday, May 29th, we will be celebrating the end of another successful school year and you are invited (and by “you” I mean those of “you” who are connected with the CSUF Entrepreneurship Program in some way or another). For more information please read below:

We hope to see you there!

Which Industries to Pursue and Which to Avoid

What are the best industries to target for new ventures or employment? I get asked that question a lot and typically respond that it may be best to target growing (hopefully thriving) industries. Examples include:

Candy: Even during a recession, people still buy candy.  It’s cheap and a comfort food.  Companies like Tootsie Pops and Snickers launched during the Depression of the 1930s.

iPhone apps: This is an industry that Steve Jobs predicted will grow even larger.  iPhone applications can be customized for practically any interest or consumer need.  Browse Apple’s App Store to get an idea of the sheer number and variety of iPhone applications out there and the potential for niche marketing.  There are apps for children’s books, photo storing, music, games, politics, fitness, money management, fertility tracking, and more.

Healthcare: The healthcare system in the United States is the middle of some big changes.  A great industry to be involved is creating new (and improving old) healthcare technology.  Home health care is also likely to be huge in the coming decades, as Baby Boomers retire.

Self-improvement: We are in the middle of a health and fitness revolution.  People are turning to self-help books and seminars, yoga and other forms of exercise, and more.

Education: Technical and trade schools are options people are turning to when they are laid off or can’t find a job in the first place.  Continuing education is likely to be a larger industry in the future, when people are expected to learn, re-learn, and “un-learn” skills quickly in order to adapt to a fast-paced information age.

Other industries to watch are fast-casual dining, green construction, energy, niche consulting, repair services, and corporate event planning (i.e. conferences and workshops).

With that said, here are some industries that you might want to avoid:

Traditional photofinishing/developing: the internet and programs like Instagram have made this industry practically obsolete.

Recordable media like CDs and DVDs: Again, the internet plays a large role here.  People stream movies and listen to music online, especially members of the younger generation.

Newspapers / magazines: This may seem like an obvious one, since you are reading this online.  People are increasingly turning to the internet for their news (and pretty much everything else).

Other industries to avoid include telecom networking equipment manufacturing, live theater, tobacco, synthetic fiber manufacturing, and hardware manufacturing.

In conclusion, seek out opportunities in industries that are growing, not fading away.  Avoid employment or investment opportunities in industries that are stuck in the past.  By that I mean industries that are making products or offering services that will simply be obsolete in a number of years.

John Bradley Jackson
Director, Center for Entrepreneurship
jjackson@fullerton.edu

Sources:

http://www.inc.com/ss/best-industries-for-starting-a-business#0

http://www.thestreet.com/story/11735368/1/top-5-industries-for-starting-a-business.html

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/10-worst-industries-2013-162721727.html

http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/rick-newman/2012/12/11/10-companies-that-tumbled-in-2012

Diana Ho Designs makes Strategic Changes

About a year ago we first brought you the story of Diana Ho and her boutique clothing company: Diana Ho Designs. Instead of going into a written explanation of what it is she set out to do I’ll just post a couple of pictures.

Diana Ho Designs
Making art of shoes was the original intention for Diana and what she created was truly stunning.

Making art out of a pair of Vans shoes is impressive but it wasn’t enough to make Diana Ho Designs successful.

As you can tell from the above pictures Diana definitely has artistic ability and the shoes that she was making were pieces of art. Unfortunately, it proved rather difficult for her to make a business out of this. Once she realized that making artsy shoes wasn’t going to be enough for her business she went ahead and made a change to her business; that would be called a “pivot” in our parlance.

A pivot isn’t something too difficult to grasp in the abstract as a pivot is nothing more than a fundamental change in a part of the business’ strategy. In this case, Diana made the pivot away from selling expensive shoes to selling more economical jewelry. Pivots, however, can be difficult to implement in the real world. Why? One of the reasons why is because a pivot represents a change in vision and, as is the case with most small businesses, the person(s) who started the business is/are the one(s) with the vision and for better or worse they have an attachment to that particular vision. Making a pivot to them might represent some kind of failure on their part because why would you make changes unless you had been wrong about something?

Fortunately, Diana isn’t in that group of stubborn entrepreneur who will go down with the vision (so to speak). She made some changes to her business model and is realizing the success she initially sought out. Here’s more of the story as retold by Dr. Atul Teckchandani:

Ho’s success as an entrepreneur has hinged on her ability to master the pivot. Her desire was to create a firm that offered products allowing people to express their uniqueness through their fashion. She called her firm Diana Ho Designs and initially started off selling customized shoes, which she would hand paint based on the customer’s specifications. When that didn’t go as well as expected, she pivoted to offering a seasonal collection of hand-painted shoes. While these shoes are still available for purchase, Ho realized that her primary audience was interested in more affordable ways to show off their uniqueness.

So she pivoted again and offered jewelry. And in selling her own line of jewelry, Ho has found a hit. Diana Ho Designs is currently available at Boutique Carolina in Berkeley, Taxi CDC in Los Angeles and online at www.dianahodesigns.com.

Diana Ho Designs’ Jewelry

The article written by Dr. Teckchandani goes on to talk a great deal about the benefits Ms. Ho derived from participating in the CSUF Entrepreneurship Program and is well worth the read just for that reason. It also goes into more depth about the entrepreneurial process that Diana had to go through in making her business a success.

Entrepreneurial Marketing Internship

Outstanding Opportunity to Build your Portfolio

(Bonus: It’s Long Term and Paid!)

Entrepreneurial Marketing Internship

Responsibilities:

  • Assist with developing marketing strategies for promoting programs and services
  • Assist in the execution of marketing initiatives for small business clients – including electronic newsletters, social media, direct mail, website, PR, events, etc.
  • Assist with other tasks as assigned

Qualifications:

  • Self-starter; able to work well without constant direction and meet assigned deadlines
  • Exceptionally direct oral and written communication skills
  • Amazing attention to detail
  • Strong computer skills – including willingness to learn existing client content management platforms (e.g. createsend.com and WordPress)

Skills to be Developed:

  • Enhance written and oral communication skills
  • Learn about practical marketing strategies
  • Be part of portfolio-worthy work
  • Ideal opportunity for someone who may want to be an entrepreneur

Time Commitment:

  • Approximately 15-20 hours a week until you graduate/get a full time job
  • Ideally, looking for someone who would be interested in working for us for 12 months
  • Flexible around holidays, breaks and finals
  • Office is in Corona (off 91 Fwy and Maple St) – some work may be completed from home

Compensation: $12 per hour

Starting Date: Mid-June

To Apply: Submit a cover letter and resume via email to danielle@supplypatriot.com