Hello Everyone! Today we had a chance to visit three great companies: Facebook, Google, and Luxe. At first glance they may not seem similar, but they all shared a nearly palpable culture oozing with creativity and passion. All of the companies welcomed us with open arms and were extremely helpful in providing relevant information on recent developments in the tech start-up world.
At Facebook we learned about the impact personal branding can have on professional development. Did you know Facebook has over 1.3 billion active monthly users? Neither did I. But, today I learned about the different tools Facebook offers to leverage this network in order to increase my fan base (I love you mom and dad, but your services will no longer be required...). We even had the opportunity to build fan pages with some of their excellent media staff (...thanks, Peter). We also had a chance to discuss some of Facebook's most recent obstacles with Facebook veteran Naiomi Gleit.
At Google we learned more about what it takes to be successful in the tech industry. Google Ventures Partner Bill Maris offered his personal insight on what it takes to build a successful start-up and have a career in tech. A major theme was the importance of building a great team. In football the right combination of members on your team makes all the difference between winning and losing. As it turns out, selecting founders for a tech start-up is no different.
Luxe offered a raw look at the beginning stages of a start-up and might have been the most engaging stop of the day. Luxe didn't have a huge campus like Google or Facebook. They're currently housed in a relatively small office with an open layout (like a true startup in my opinion). The access was more than anything we experienced at Facebook or Google. We were able to walk up to any employee while they were working and simply ask them what they're doing. It was great because we had access to the entire backbone of the company from the CEO to the support staff. I had a chance to talk to a couple of their engineers, Pawel and Rob, and they were extremely helpful in suggesting resources to help me improve my coding skills.
Believe it or not, our day was not over. We headed back to Wharton and squeezed in a couple of presentations...I am so tired and so well informed. Until next time...zzzzzzzz
Hello to all of my fans! I'm back!!! For those of you who don't know who I am, my name is Josh Martin. I'm a third year outside linebacker for the Kansas City Chiefs, and I'm here to blog about my experience as a participant in the 2015 NFL: Business Management & Entrepreneurial program at the Wharton School of Business in San Francisco (...yeah that's a lot). Now that the formalities are out of the way....
This. place. is. awesome! The past day and a half have been filled with invaluable lectures and presentations offering an abundance of information. We've learned a lot stuff so far, and met a lot of great people. For example, are any of you familiar with the company Integrate? Or, its co-founder and CEO Jeremy Bloom? Besides being a presenter this week, Jeremy is an accomplished entrepreneur and professional athlete. After having a legendary professional skiing career (US Skiing Hall of Fame...cough cough) and a career in the NFL, Jeremy entered the tech start-up world which eventually led to the development of Integrate, a successful cloud marketing platform. He's obviously a busy guy, and he's only one example of the many wonderful people I've had the pleasure of meeting this week! NFL Hall-of-Famer Ronnie Lott was here today!
And, that is exactly why I'm here. These programs offer a means to build meaningful relationships off of the field, relationships that lead to opportunities after football is all said and done. I'm thrilled to be back this year, and I'm looking forward to sharing more of my experiences with you over the coming days. Tomorrow we visit Facebook, Google, and Luxe, so I'll be sure to take lots of pictures! Until then...
The pictures keep on coming (posted below)...this particular photo was taken during dessert at LaSalle Grill (just in case you were wondering, the rest of the meal looked just as good). After the third day of the program things are starting to wind down. Even though we had another full day, the end is in sight...:(. Today's focus was finance and social enterprise. During our sessions we discussed different ways of making social impact through enterprise as well as ways of managing and interpreting personal and business finances to make social enterprise a reality. Essentially, the potential of social enterprise lies solely in the hands of the people willing to go against traditional business models by emphasizing both financial profit and social impact as opposed to just financial profit. As a 2nd year player, the personal finance lecture was of most interest to me because a strong financial foundation allows for a larger potential for both profit and social impact in the future. Tomorrow we will give our group business plan pitches...let the games begin! Until next time...