Jill Salzman Created A Hub Of Resources And Meetups For Mompreneurs

Jill Salzman is currently growing her third entrepreneurial venture, The Founding Moms, the world’s first and only collective of offline meetups and online resources for mom entrepreneurs that was named a Top 100 Website for Entrepreneurs in 2015 by Forbes. She’s the author of Found It: A Field Guide for Mom Entrepreneurs, a co-host of Inc. Magazine’s top-rated entertaining business podcast, Breaking Down Your Business. She was recently named one of the Top 50 Women to Watch In Tech as well as a Top 100 Champion Small Business Influencer. Read our interview with the lovely Jill below…

What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?

Desperation. I was running two unrelated businesses at the same time, and I was pregnant with my second baby girl, wondering how I was going to raise 2 kiddos and build 2 businesses, all at the same time. So I used Meetup.com as my call for help. And it just kept growing, so I turned it into a business.

Tell us about your business. 

The Founding Moms is a collective of offline meetups and online resources for mom entrepreneurs. We have monthly meetups with business experts in 50+ cities in 12 countries around the world. We’re now at 10,000+ members and the community, both offline and online, it is a tremendous support system for entrepreneurial moms.

Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about? 

Yes! For the rest of the month, anyone who joins our online community, The Founding Moms Community, gets a copy of the newly-released audiobook, Found It: A Field Guide for Mom Entrepreneurs, for free!

List awards/certifications/accomplishments.

Inc. Magazine has listed us several times as a top website for entrepreneurs and women entrepreneurs. We’ve received recognition from Forbes, People Magazine, ABC7, Fox, and NBC TV, and we’re waiting on Ellen DeGeneres to return my call. 😉

Where is your business based?

I’m in Chicago, IL, but we’re international as an organization.

What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

I started out by asking folks if they’d buy what I wanted to sell. I’ve done that for all 3 of my businesses. Without knowing if the market is out there – and I don’t trust surveys or studies to tell me that – I won’t launch. Once I know it’s out there, I create a website STAT. How else will the world think I am legit? Then I’ll be off and running testing everything from marketing plans to pricing options to more varieties of products and services, if I get there.

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?

Outreach. Outreach like crazy. Emailing, posting to social media, and specifically, asking others to ask their friends and family and colleagues to spread the word. I am not shy when it comes to asking for help – and I think it’s the only reason we’ve grown as big as we have.

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

Telling everyone on planet Earth that we exist. We’d like everyone to know.

How did you overcome these challenges?

We haven’t yet. For the amount of outreach we have done, and for the amount of people who are aware about us, there are so many more who are not. That’s why we’re constantly testing new ideas to see what sticks and what brings more folks to us.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

I lean on colleagues to calm me down. If I’m having a rough day, I usually reach out to someone I know to tell me that it’s not the end of the world. I avoid social media altogether because it never seems to help (and I say this because a lot of people lean on it to help them feel better and it rarely works.)

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

By making sure that people know we think business does not have to be boring. If you merely go to my Instagram feed, you’ll see what I mean.

What is the best advice you have received recently?

“These things take time.”

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

“These things take time.”

What is your favorite business tool or resource?

ProductHunt. I’m an early adopter and app junkie, so I get my fix there by finding new tools every day.

What social media outlets do you use? List them below.

Instagram @foundingmom
Twitter @foundingmom
Facebook www.facebook.com/foundingmoms
Facebook Group www.facebook.com/groups/FMCChicago
Website www.foundingmoms.com
Podcast www.breakingdownyourbusiness.com
Hashtags #theFMC #foundingmoms #womensupportingwomen

What is a good article or book you have read recently?

I love Malcolm Gladwell. Instead of releasing his latest book as a book, he turned it into a podcast called Revisionist History. SO. GOOD.

What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?

Finding virtual assistants to help us build this puppy.

What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?

Opening up more Founding Moms’ Exchanges in more cities! So many more cities!

Beatriz Ospina Created A Mindfulness Meditation App To Help People Live Happier Lives

Beatriz Ospina has more than 6 years of experience in the Tech industry. She worked for UPS Corporate managing different technology applications and programs. She is now the Co-Founder and Editor in Chief of Welzen. She is extremely passionate about her work and wants to share the benefits of mindfulness meditation with everyone. She holds a degree of Business Administration and Communication from Reinhardt University. She has been a meditator for several years now. Read our interview with the lovely Beatriz below…

What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?

I first saw the benefits of meditation when I played competitive tennis. I used lots of visualizations as part of my mental training. I did not know I was meditating at the time. A few years ago I began meditating again to relieve some stress and saw a lot of positive changes in my life. I became greatly aware of my emotions and my responses to situations. On the other hand my stress and anxiety levels dropped tremendously. I became happier and healthier through meditation. In conversations with my now business partner, Esteban Gonzalez, we decided to launch a Mindfulness Meditation app, with the idea of using our technology skills to expand the numerous benefits of Mindfulness. We wanted to positively impact people’s life and we came up with Welzen. Wellness + Zen = Welzen =)

Tell us about your business.

Welzen is a health and wellness company. With our tag line “Your Path to a Happier Life” we try to guide our audience exactly to that, to a more peaceful and happier life. Our main product is a mindfulness meditation app that has short guided mindfulness meditations, coaching sessions, and different series to build ones skills in mindfulness. The app is categorized in different areas of focus such as: Relieve stress, Reduce Anxiety, Increase Focus, Enhance Creativity, Improve Relations, Kid’s Meditation time, and Business Hours, and Happiness.

Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?

Yes! Ladybossblogger readers can access a 30% discount. 

List awards/certifications/accomplishments.

  • Bachelor of Science: Business Administration & Communication – 2010
  • MBSR Training – 2016
  • Buddhism and Mindfulness Course – 2016
  • Rated 4th Best Meditation Apps by Marie Claire – Featured Article
  • KnownStartup – Featured Article as 10 Must-Have Mindfulness Meditation Apps 

Where is your business based?

Atlanta, GA.

What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

We created the MVP and from there we released a free version of the app in March 2016 to prove the need for a product like ours.

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?

High review scores on the app stores and a lot of word to mouth. The positive reviews have increased our visibility among bloggers and magazines which has led to featured articles that also generate traffic.

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

Building a strong brand with a small team.

How did you overcome these challenges?

Setting priorities and time management.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

We have built a wonderful Instagram community of followers that continuously encourage us with their kind words. We have also received wonderful feedback on how we have changed the lives of those that have used Welzen and that is a true motivation!

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

  1. From a user experience perspective, we have beautiful packaging and a simple experience
  2. Our coaching sessions on the app, which explains the scientific part on how mindfulness changes the brain through the different mediations, how users can overcome challenges, and what to expect along their practice
  3. Our newly launched category: Business Hours, which offers micro-meditations to help the user remain calm, focused and motivated throughout their workday
  4. Our pricing is a bit more affordable than our competitor’s

What is the best advice you have received recently?

When looking at the mobile app to think using the concept of “don’t make me think” for usability and user experience. It’s a simple concept of providing the user exactly what they want or need.

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

Build your MVP! It’s so important and often ignored.

What is your favorite business tool or resource?

My app – haha =)

What social media outlets do you use? List them below.

Instagram @welzenapp
Twitter @welzenapp
Facebook @Welzen
Website www.welzen.org
Email Beatriz@welzen.org
Youtube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgp-se7BBJt2DsKAJqq9ZMQ
Hashtags #welzenapp #anxiety #stressmangement #yourpathtoahappierlife

What is a good article or book you have read recently?

“The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World” is a book by the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?

Funding – we are looking to raise our first round of funding in 2017.

What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?

Grow the number of downloads. Gain more exposure. We are planning to achieve this by continuing to offer a great product and reaching out to bloggers.

Lyn Brownlee Operates A Personalized & Trusted Call Service For Seniors

Lyn Brownlee is the Co-Founder of Jibbr, Inc. She’s recently relocated from the DC area to Chicago. Her bachelor of arts in English was conferred at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She has also completed a master of human resource management degree and a six sigma green belt at Villanova University. Lyn’s most recent position was as a Business Development Consultant at The Gallup Organization in DC. Additionally, she has experience working with e-commerce companies and has assisted in the inception of countless other startups. She has a passion for helping the elderly and volunteers at senior care facilities. Read our interview with the lovely Lyn below…

What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?

Jibbr was founded by my twin sister Tammye and I. It’s a company close to our heart. In April 2014, we experienced both our grandmother and aunt transition on the same day. Our grandmother dedicated much of her later years to caring for seniors in her home; however, she lived her final days in a long-term care facility. With both our grandmother and aunt thousands of miles away in Alabama, we wished a company like Jibbr was around to offer friendly and compassionate well-being checks to our loved ones. After considering many names for the company, we decided upon Jibbr, a spin on the word ‘Jibber Jabber’- to talk. The difference with Jibbr is to talk with purpose, to check on one’s well-being, to show concern, and connect.

Tell us about your business.

Lyn started Jibbr with her twin sister. In short, Jibbr is an e-commerce company that provides well-being checks to seniors in the U.S. and Canada. Our mission is to take care of seniors and to provide solutions to problems that seniors face from combating isolation to providing medication reminders and confidence calls.

Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?

Absolutely, we are offering a 7-day free trial. Check out our website at: https://www.jibbr.org/pricing/ 

List awards/certifications/accomplishments.

Jibbr received over 30,000 unique page views in our first month! This is a testament to the power of effective and targeted social media marketing. We also have 21 featured supporters/partners who are movers and shakers in the senior care arena. I’m also quite proud of our nine spectacular advisory board members who are all experts in the senior care field!

 Where is your business based?

Chicago, IL – we operate across the U.S. and Canada.

What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

Get incorporated, work on a rock-solid marketing and outreach plan, then use social media to increase your visibility online.

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?

Social media marketing is key, especially in this day and age. It’s essential to have a strong presence on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Facebook. Social media marketing expands your reach like never before. There is a very low overhead cost for this type of marketing and the ROI can be astronomical! Most people spend the majority of their time on social media, so it’s integral to meet customers where they are. Instead of waiting for customers coming to us, we come to them!

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

Any time you deal with customers, there is a chance someone will be dissatisfied. At Jibbr, it’s all about the client. We do everything in our power to ensure that the customer is always right.

How did you overcome these challenges?

We have been able to overcome our early startup challenges by doing the majority of the business development leg work ourselves. We personally invest our money, time, and energy into ensuring that Jibbr provides white glove customer service to every client during each call.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

When times get tough and I feel like quitting, I think about the story behind Jibbr – my grandmother and aunt. I think about all of the seniors who do not have relationships with their family members, and I think about the impact that a company like Jibbr can have on all of these people. I think about what will happen to these lonely seniors if I stop. It takes a certain amount of tenacity and resilience to stay the course.

How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

We have a strong competitive advantage in the marketplace, as there are few national competitors in the senior well-being market. Jibbr has been formulated to be highly innovative, engaging, and will be known for its ease of use, which appeals to the senior demographic. What differentiates Jibbr is that we focus on creating an individualized experience through meaningful conversations to make seniors feel a sense of connectedness.

What is the best advice you have received recently?

“You can’t manage what you don’t create and you won’t create what you can’t manage.” -Grant Cardone

This quote resonates with me, because all entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs must take responsibility for their own success. No one is going to come to your house and make your dreams come true. It’s all up to you!

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

“You have to be proactive to turn your dreams into reality.”

“By thought, the thing you want is brought to you; by action you receive it.” – Wallace D. Wattles.

What is your favorite business tool or resource?

Hootsuite, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

What social media outlets do you use? List them below.

Instagram lyn4jibbr
Twitter @jib4seniors and @lyn4jibbr
Facebook www.facebook.com/Jib4Seniors
LinkedIn jibbr-inc. well-being checks
Website www.jibbr.org
Email lyn@jibbr.org
Hashtags #jibbr #jib4seniors #jibbrchecks #lyn4jibbr

What is a good article or book you have read recently?

“The Outliers” by Malcolm Gladwell, “Transform Your Life: A Blissful Journey” by Kelsang Gyatso, and “Be Obsessed or Be Average” by Grant Cardone.

What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?

Venture capital funding.

What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?

In the next quarter, we plan on expanding our client base in the Toronto area. We are also working on building our app! Keep an eye on us… we’re going places!

Bernice Loman Provides Creative Services And Educates Business Owners

Bernice has a Masters and Bachelor’s in Business Administration and Management and serves as the overseer, visionary and designer for Loman Creative Services and Loman Creative Marketing. She has a passion for social media marketing, business development, economic growth, as well as developing inspiring business owners and young entrepreneurs. Read our interview with the lovely Bernice below…

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What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?

My motivation and inspiration was definitely divine. I never imagined becoming a business owner. God had a better plan for me and I love it!

Tell us about your business.

My business, Loman Creative Services (LCS) provides creative services in social media marketing/management, graphics, apparel, technology, videography/photography & website development/hosting. What sets LCS apart is creativity and customer service. We offer 24/7 sales and support. 

Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?

Yes. We offer daily specials on .com domains which are $10.99/year. Our prices are cheaper than most well-known web host companies. I’m proud of that.  

Where is your business based?

Loman Creative Services is based in Savannah, GA – although we service clients all across the world.

What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

My first few steps was prayer, writing/planning, research, business license, marketing… in that order!

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?

Social media has been the most effective way of raising awareness and getting new customers. Over 90% of our clients have came from social media. It has been highly effective and social media management/marketing is one of our services that we provide to other business owners and ministries.

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What has been your biggest challenges so far?

My biggest challenge so far was investing my time in a 9-5 while trying to pursue my vision for LCS. It was a challenge to pursue someone else’s vision while having a big vision of my own.

How did you overcome these challenges?

I overcame that challenge by giving my resignation at my 9-5. I remember it like it was yesterday. It was a wonderful feeling to finally take the “leap of faith” that I’ve read and heard about. I don’t regret it! It’s been an outstanding journey.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

My faith has kept me grounded. I also enjoy being surrounded by other successful entrepreneurs and sending encouragement. This has kept me motivated.

How did you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

First, realizing that we are all different from the beginning of creation. Secondly, I kept hearing others say “I have a website but I can’t get in it to change it…”. I would ask questions like, “Do you know what a c-panel is?” and “Can you log-in?” and “Is your domain private or public?” From others responses, I learned that I offer education and self-sufficiency that my competitors don’t.

What is the best advice you have received recently?

Know your target market.

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

The same as above. “Know your target market” and stay focused. Don’t spend much time on the wrong audience. Connect with others who understand your worth. There will be times where you will want to quit, may not see where the next business contract will come from, may be overwhelmed with business expenses and more. However, stay focused on the vision.

What is your favorite business tool or resource?

My favorite business tool is my MAC haha.

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What social media outlets do you use? List them below.

Instagram @lomancs
Twitter @lomancs
Facebook www.facebook.com/lomancreativeservices
Facebook Group www.facebook.com/groups/ChristianBOF
Website www.lomancs.biz
Hashtags #lomancreativeservices #lomancs

What is a good article or book you have read recently?

“Leadership Gold” by John C. Maxwell.

What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?

Im currently learning how to advance in Youtube live and offering more tutorials for business owners. I recently had a Youtube Live tutorial to teach business owners and ministries how to create their own online store.

What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?

My goals for the next few months is to increase in workshops and online tutorials. I have made the steps in hiring a business planner (Roberts Consulting Group, LLC.) who is assisting me in 2017 workshop planning. More to come!

Fereshteh Forough Started An After-School Program For Young Afghan Girls To Learn Tech Skills

Fereshteh Forough faced many challenges while she was studying computer programming, so she started an after-school program for girls 15-25 who wanted to go into the same field to provide a resource in order that other people wouldn’t have to face the same obstacles from her past. Read our interview with the lovely Fereshteh below…

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What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?

While studying computer programming, I faced so many challenges both as a teacher and a student. I realized someone needed to create a resource for other Afghan women so that they didn’t face the same challenges. That’s why I started Code to Inspire, in January of 2015, as a social enterprise to insert women into Afghanistan’s growing tech industry. An entre into the tech industry also enables their economic and social advancement in society.

I knew so many women who graduated from Computer Science programs, and couldn’t find work in the tech industry. While there are many factors as to why they couldn’t find the right employment, I believe that familial and societal limitations play a role. Many families prefer that their daughters become teachers because it’s a well respected job in the community – you get paid well, and you only deal with women. It fits within their concept of how women should live their lives.

A woman with a computer science degree can’t exactly up and leave her hometown for a great job offer in another city. Many families won’t let their daughters leave; safety and security are a major concern, of course, but it goes deeper than that. Most of the time, women can’t even walk down the street alone without enduring public shaming for being without a guardian. It’s simply not part of Afghan culture for a woman to live alone in a city away from her family.

Tell us about your business.

Code to Inspire (CTI) is an after-school program founded by Fereshteh Forough in January of 2015. It is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit. We opened the first coding school for girls in Herat, Afghanistan in November of 2015. We provide a safe educational environment for 50 female students aged 15-25. We aim to educate Afghan women with in-demand programming skills, empower them to add unique value to their communities, and inspire them to strive for financial and social independence.

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What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

  • Incorporating and registration in NYC.
  • Finding enthusiastic people to join our board of directors and advisory board.
  • Setting up online crowdfunding to raise the initial fund for the coding school.
  • Using social media to spread the word and raise awareness.

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?

Social media, email marketing, media relations, networking, and speaking engagements.

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

There are many challenges that I have faced, starting from day one. I knew I would face challenges for opening the first coding school that female students in Afghanistan can join without worrying about security and cultural issues. It was important to prepare the right papers and documents here in New York to operate as a legitimate 501 (c)(3) nonprofit, and to raise the funds we needed for our coding school.

How did you overcome these challenges?

The best part of my work is that everyday, I learn something new and meet inspiring people who share their knowledge. It feels great to know that there are 50 female students who are learning how to code every day to change their lives and Afghanistan’s future.

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How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

Living life as a refugee taught me so much. I learned to use the most out of the least and don’t wait for opportunities, but create them. It has long been my passion to give back to my community by doing something meaningful. I was able to realize that passion by empowering women with education and technology. Unfortunately, mainstream media is unfair to Afghanistan. You only hear about bombing, violence, and extremists, whereas we also have so many good and inspirational stories of people who are bringing positive changes to the community even in a small way.

How did you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

We’re the first girls-only school in Afghanistan to offer courses in coding, internet access, and career services. That means we don’t exactly have competitors to distinguish ourselves from, although we’d be thrilled to see more schools like ours pop up.

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

I think it’s very important that you believe in yourself and have faith in the work you’re doing. It doesn’t matter where you are, what you have or what you don’t have – you should never be afraid to start anything you believe in. Embrace criticism; it makes you stronger. You have to create your own opportunities. Don’t wait for them to come to you.

What social media outlets do you use? List them below.

Instagram @codetoinspire
Twitter @CodeToInspire
Facebook @CodeToInspire
Website www.codetoinspire.org

What is a good article or book you have read recently?

5 female coders you have probably never heard of who changed the world. You can access the article here.

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Victoria Van Zhong Saw a Problem with Residential Security Systems So She Fixed It

Victoria Van Zhong went from working a 7-3 security job at the Chicago Public Schools to seeing a problem with their security system, quitting, and starting her own business in order to fix the problem! Read our interview with the lovely Victoria below…

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What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?

I was working for the Chicago Public Schools at the time that I decided to start my own company. I was leading a major school safety and security effort, and with a background in crime research, I noticed the flaws in our security system and how ancient both the residential and commercial security systems were. My business partner and I had a very novel and innovative piece of technology that would disrupt the home security industry. We wanted more than anything to make a security system that could save lives and be your own virtual bodyguard. So we founded Cypromus, Inc. in 2014.

Tell us about your business.

Cyp is the first intelligent home security and stereo system. The Cyp Box is ready to sense distress in cases of home invasions and calls for help. Voice command will trigger an alarm to call the authorities. For individuals who live alone, Cyp will check in frequently to make sure he or she is okay and alert friends/family if the individual does not respond.

At CYPROMUS, we believe that the residential security market needs a major disruption. Technology has improved many aspects of our everyday lives, yet the residential security systems that are available today have been around for decades. Many of them still run on old telephone lines. Many companies, large and small, have attempted and are still trying to change the game, but they’re really just a slight facelift of the same underlying products. At the same time, the tech revolution has created a huge divide between those in the tech industry and those simply consuming it. Using technology to improve the residential security market must also change the relationship of the consumer to the technology so that we’re all empowered to contribute to the entities that are most intimate with our homes.

The Cyp Box tackles both problems, creating a new residential security paradigm and getting the consumer to engage in the tech economy, by offering a platform that is open and customizable to each individual and family’s needs. As a ready-to-run security system, the Cyp Box can use its microphones to listen for your distress calls and call for help. As a DIY robot and computing platform, Cyp’s features can be enhanced at any time and by anyone. In fact, the Cyp virtual bodyguard software will interact with you to understand your security needs and provide the appropriate level of protection for you and your family.

Besides offering assistance when you need it, the Cyp Box can use its full range stereo speakers to play music and other content. Interaction with the Cyp virtual bodyguard on a regular basis is the best way to ensure that if you ever need to use it in a time of emergency, you know how to activate it. Over time, the Cyp Virtual Bodyguard will gain more and more capabilities, as we’d expect any technology to do. Because the Cyp Box is modular, you can upgrade parts of it. That saves your wallet and our natural resources.

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What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

Getting business licenses. Hiring a business attorney. Drafting a presentation deck for potential investors. Creating a list of solid potential investors to meet with.

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?

Going out and meeting with people. Showing up to events. Talking about your product as CEO and founder. Making an incredible product video: youtu.be/-GzLUxNtBzg

What have been your biggest challenges so far?

Funding is always an issue whether you’re starting up or been around for a long time. It’s very hard to find the right funders and the amount of funding that will take you to the next stage.

How did you overcome these challenges?

I always look at people’s responses a little differently than meets the eye. A “no” to me means “not yet” or “not now”. So I plan a follow up meeting and focus on the next prospect. I tell everyone I meet about my business because there might be a “yes” from any conversation. You never know who that great new partner might be. It’s both exhausting and exciting to fundraise and network but you have to get out there and do it with passion.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

I have a robust social and family life so when things are bad at work, I turn to my family and friends for comfort. It always helps to come from a culture where food is the center of all gatherings. So, I eat, drink, and unwind with important people. My four-year old is my source of inspiration and my mother is who I want to impress at the end of the day.

How did you distinguish yourself from your competitors?

I am an Asian American female running a high tech company. So I have to keep myself very knowledgeable, updated, and connected in the artificial intelligence world. It’s a man’s world still and I have to be louder, faster, and better to get noticed.

What is the best advice you have received recently?

Never let someone else do the important work for you. What you define as important is up to you.

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?

Always bring your best tools to every meeting and never save the best for last. Because your best is what will get you to the next stage. And always ask questions. Never assume. Just ask.

What is your favorite business tool or resource?

LinkedIn.com and Angellist.com is very good for connecting with and finding the right people. I also like Forbes.com and The New York Times because there’s always great coverage on the latest technology and emerging tech businesses.

What social media outlets do you use? List them below.

· Instagram @doc_toria
· Facebook @cypromus
· Twitter @cyp_has_arrived
· LinkedIn Victoria Van Zhong, Ph.D

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What is a good article or book you have read recently?

I read a great article “What You Can Learn From Kobe Bryant’s Latest Career Move” by Nathan Tanner. It’s a quick read that stayed with me for days. Basically, Kobe Bryant’s humble method of cold calling famous people to ask them “simple” or “stupid” questions about how they started their empire profoundly impacted me. I love asking questions and listening to people’s responses. It took me decades to learn to ask simple questions and just listen. I post all good articles or books on my Twitter.

What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?

I want to start putting my products into some homes of people who have a lot to protect. This will allow me to gather relevant data to improve the product and start more major marketing and production effort.