Wednesday, May 14, 2014

My “boss” … Question #2

Question # 2...Justin, your website Unlimiters is amazing. How did you get it from a thought to a reality?
"I was able to really start thinking seriously about making UNlimiters a reality when I was accepted into the #1 ranked entrepreneurship program in the nation, the Wolff Center for Entrepreneurship (WCE), at the University of Houston. The great part of the program was that it focused on helping students develop their business ideas so it was tailored to each of us, individually.

Right away, my mentor wanted to introduce me to people she thought could help develop my idea further. The first two people she introduced me to, Dick Lew and Christine Stevens, specialize in building brands. They revamped my logo and aided me in flushing out the idea. Later on, Jackie Townsend, a special education director, joined in for monthly brainstorming sessions. They all really supported me and got behind UNlimiters, and were a tremendous help in setting the groundwork for the company.

My mentor then introduced me to Eunsook Kwon, the director of the Industrial Design (ID) program at the University of Houston. After about three meetings, she decided to insert an UNlimiters project into the curriculum for one of her classes during my last semester at the WCE. The project involved a group of students following me around with video cameras, studying and observing me, and ultimately resulted in each student designing a product to make my life and everyday tasks easier.

Right after my mentor and I met with the director of the ID program for the first time, I was asked by the business plan team in my class if they could use my UNlimiters idea to develop a true business plan for use in national business plan competitions. Thereafter I joined the business plan team where all five of us, TattianaReznick, Randy Hannemann, Louis McEneny, Adam Trojanowski and I, wrote the UNlimiters business plan together.

In conjunction with the “paparazzi” following me around for the ID project throughout the last semester, the business plan team and I traveled around the US presenting the UNlimiters plan at various colleges. We went to four different competitions; Dallas, Nebraska and two in California. We won 1st place in Dallas and Nebraska, tied for 2nd in California, and were included in the top ten in California, winning $44,000 in total.

When I graduated from the WCE, I still had a semester left to get my diploma and the business was placed on hold. Immediately after officially graduating, my father and I began designing the UNlimiters website and started the business as you see it today. It was a crazy ride to go from an idea to a reality, and we still have an incredibly long way to go.

I am extremely grateful for everyone who helped along the way and for all those who are helping now, including amazing bloggers like you. It is truly a team effort.'

…to be continued.



Blogger Anvilcloud said...

If it takes a village to raise a child, it seems like it takes an extremely talented town to raise an entrepreneur.

6:12 AM  
Blogger Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Quite an amazing story about an amazing young man, Ginnie, and already looking forward to the next post on Justin and UNlimiters.

6:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A clever lad with a clever idea. Industrial design sounds like an interesting field of study. Good for Justin, pursuing his dream.

7:23 AM  
Blogger Syd said...

He seems to be very talented.

5:30 AM  

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