As a part of the Game-Changers Series for Startup Week, Caleb Talley sat down for a conversation with Tom Gordon, the co-founder, president, and CEO of Slim Chickens. They talked about the early days of Slim Chickens, how the company has adapted through the pandemic, the current and future expansion of Slim Chickens, and much more. You do not want to miss out on this tremendous episode!
(1:20) The beginnings of Slim Chickens
(6:12) Handling finances with a young business
(8:21) Taking outside capital after initial investors
(11:15) Building a culture that welcomes everyone from the community
(13:40) Going international
(15:33) Making menu decisions
(18:49) Adjusting to the pandemic environment
(23:55) Tom gives advice to his younger self
“We say none of us really ever lost. Everybody who has a company that they start from scratch makes sacrifices. And those are things you’ve got to do. You know, you don’t pay yourself. You sell a car to make payroll. You know, you take your money to the bank after Friday lunch to make sure you make Friday payroll for your people. That’s real-life in business. That’s real life in American capitalism, and if you stick to it, you know, often you can get to the next level.” (7:45)
“You know, those are lessons that are learned and will always be valuable to me and Greg Smart. And it just takes time. Surviving is the key, and if you can survive long enough and have enough time and adjust quick, you know, I think that anybody in the US, anybody in this country has a shot at it.” (25:
This week, Jeff Amerine talks with Sam Alley, chairman, and CEO of VCC. VCC is a leading general contractor in the nation, and it is the largest retail construction company in America. In this episode, you will hear about how Sam started VCC with two partners, challenges the business has overcome, and the strong culture found within the company. Sam also shares advice for engineers who are looking to build their own businesses. As always, thanks for tuning in!
(1:10) Sam Allley introduces VCC
(3:46) Sam talks about the early days at VCC
(6:18) Challenges that VCC has overcome
(9:34) Advice for entrepreneurs looking to build large enterprises
(11:47) Building a strong culture
(14:19) Managing a business through COVID-19
(20:06) Advice for engineers looking to start their own business
(22:15) Sam’s take on the American Dream
“So really, construction includes engineering and business together, and that’s why I was really excited to choose the construction industry.” (2:41)
“If you ever go and start your own company, people will come and ask you to service them because they’ve dealt with you. And it doesn’t matter what the name of the company is, it’s the individual that makes a difference.” (4:09)
Welcome back to another episode of the Startup Junkies Podcast! This week, Caleb Talley and Jeff Amerine chat with special guest Sarah Frey, CEO, and founder of Frey Farms. Frey Farms is one of the nation's largest fresh produce suppliers and grows fresh produce in the Midwest, Southeast, and West Virginia. From a recent appearance on CBS to creating her book "The Growing Season: How I Built a New Life -- And Saved an American Farm", Sarah Frey has made an impact on many people telling her remarkable entrepreneurial story. In this episode, you will get to hear about Sarah's inspiring journey to save the family farm, an in-depth conversation around everything pumpkin related, and how COVID has affected the agriculture industry. Listen in to this great story!
(1:00) Introducing Frey Farms
(11:17) Frey Farms, the largest pumpkin provider in the country
(16:14) Educating the public on the pumpkin as a part of a meal
(19:20) The sales model of Frey Farms
(27:00) Using imperfect produce
(31:32) How Sarah’s childhood experiences prepared her for future success
(35:32) The future of Frey Farms
(38:40) Sarah’s advice to her younger self
“Food was simple. It was clean, and it was delicious. Nothing ever went to waste on our farm, because we couldn't afford to waste anything on the farm where I grew up when I was a little girl. And it’s those same principles that apply today to our business on a much larger scale. And I think there is an opportunity to tell that story...to educate the consumer on this is who we are. This is how we grow your food. This is what’s important to us. And I think that translates to more customer loyalty at the grocery retailer.” (20:17)
Hey everyone! We are back again with another spectacular week of the Startup Junkies Podcast! This week, Caleb Talley, Jeff Amerine, and Matthew Ward talk with Jeroen Corthout, co-founder and CEO of Salesflare. Salesflare is a simply powerful CRM that automates data to build better relationships and make more sales. It's a fast, visual, and easy-to-use sales machine that is built by humans for humans. In this episode, you will get to hear about the evolution of Salesflare, the amount of time employees spend on SaaS platforms, the flexibility of raising various funds to run a startup, and the impact of COVID on Salesflare. We are happy you are tuning in with us!
Hey everyone! Welcome back to another great episode of the Startup Junkies Podcast. This week, Jeff Amerine and Matthew Ward have a lively conversation with Mark Donnigan, founder of d-launch. d-launch is a marketing consulting firm Mark started in 2010 to help startup companies crush their business objectives through marketing architecture. In this episode, you will get to hear about Mark's impactful journey from sales to opening his own marketing consulting firm, his approach to picking your first marketing hire, and why there should not be a demand generation function. Tune in for these words of wisdom!
(1:01) Introducing Mark Donnigan
(4:46) Go-to market engineering
(10:51) The importance of a startup’s first marketing hire
(19:30) Demand generation marketing
(23:35) The difference in B2C and B2B sales
(31:00) Mark’s advice for his past self
“The high failure rate of startups is due largely to the fact that - not because what was built didn’t work, or didn’t fulfill the promise...but it’s because they failed to educate the market as to the problem that this invention would solve.” (5:52)
“In some ways, a lot of the B2C motions are, are, are, the tactics are different in B2B. It’s true, but at the end of the day, I’m still selling to a human. And if that human doesn’t connect with me, as another human even at the most basic relationship level, I’m not going to close the sale” (23:59)
Hey everyone! This is another special week with your Startup Junkie Crew. This week, Caleb Talley, Jeff Amerine, and Matthew Ward have an insightful call with Steve Case, co-founder of AOL and CEO of Revolution. Revolution is a venture capital firm that helps entrepreneurs build the next generation of transformative companies outside of Silicon Valley. In this episode, you will get to hear about barriers around private investment activity, important aspects of developing a venture ecosystem, and opportunities exposed by COVID-19. You do not want to miss out on this valuable episode!
Tyler Elm - BlueInGreen
Welcome back to another episode of the Startup Junkies Podcast! This week, Caleb Talley and Jeff Amerine speak with Tyler Elm, Chief Marketing and Business Sustainability Officer of BlueInGreen. BlueInGreen designs the most efficient water treatment solutions in order to lower the total cost of treatment while improving water quality. In this episode, you will get to hear about Tyler's sustainability background, challenges of growing in a niche vertical, and potential exit strategies for BlueInGreen. Check out this episode!
(1:06) Introducing BlueInGreen
(1:52) Tyler’s career background
(6:47) BlueInGreen’s significant growth in a conservative market
(12:51) BlueInGreen’s plans to scale internationally
(15:50) COVID’s effects on scaling for BlueInGreen
(20:38) How teaming up with a strategic partner could benefit BlueInGreen
(28:20) Tyler shares advice to other people looking to team up with a startup
(36:02) Wrapping up
“What we’ve been trying to do is scale certain technologies and certain markets based on high value opportunities for the customer. So the drive of strong ROI and applications that really leverage our core competencies of being able to treat more water with less energy and have a smaller footprint.” (10:12)
“I would say that we’re giving the customer the opportunity to either tap a capital budget or an operational budget. In some applications, the operation, the operational savings cover more than the capital costs very quickly.” (23:34)
Hey everyone! Welcome back to another episode of the Startup Junkies Podcast. This week, Caleb Talley has a special chat with Cameron Smith of Cameron Smith & Associates. Cameron Smith & Associates is one of the nation's leading recruiting firms that is devoted to finding and placing the best talent. In this episode, you will get to hear about the impact Cameron Smith & Associates has made in Northwest Arkansas, the game-changing moment for Mr. Smith, and the transformation of fastpitch softball in Arkansas. Check out this fun, insightful episode!
(2:21) Cameron Smith and Associates origin story
(7:39) Cameron shares game changing moments from his career
(10:21) Cameron and his wife Monica’s meeting story
(15:32) How Cameron changed the Arkansas sports landscape
(21:41) COVID’s effects on Cameron Smith and Associates
(23:14) What’s next for the company?
(24:40) Best advice Cameron has received
“I was busier than all get out, and I really couldn’t hire recruiters quick enough to manage the business. So fast forward 25 years later. There are 1,600 plus Walmart vendors here. And I believe we are responsible for bringing more than 500 of those teams here, and help facilitating close to 5,000 jobs. It’s been a great run, and we’re very grateful” (5:13)
“When you’re first starting out, you have this vision for this business. You’ve got to ask a lot of questions. You have to do your due diligence. You’ve got to run the numbers and make a plan.” (25:31)
Welcome back to another week of the Startup Junkies Podcast! This week, Caleb Talley, Jeff Amerine, and Matthew Ward have a chat with Sean Petterson, founder, and CEO of Strongarm Technologies. Strongarm Tech is a developer of a safety science platform that uses wearable sensors and AI-driven analysis to collect, analyze and predict insights on industrial workers in order to mitigate the risk of injury, enabling clients to mitigate workman's compensation claims from back injuries and increase worker productivity and comfort. In this episode, you will get to hear about Sean's compelling story and background, critical adjustments made during COVID-19, and insights around company culture. Check out this compelling episode!
(1:14) What is StrongArm Tech
(6:20) How StrongArm Tech saves company’s money
(9:51) Where will StrongArm be in the 3 years?
(12:13) COVID’s effects on StrongArm
(16:26) How insurance helps in StrongArm’s sales process
(19:23) Sean talks about keeping people from all areas of operation focused on the data that truly matters
(22:52) Sean shares stories of how StrongArm has been impactful and helpful to clients
(26:20) Sean talks about the culture of StrongArm
(29:39) Seans shares advice to his younger self
(31:53) Wrap up
“So today we’ve transitioned, and Strongarm is the world’s leading safety science company. We’ve had over 35,000 people run through our platform, and we’re reducing injuries now at a rate of nearly 50% year over year.” (5:32)
“So for us to be able to be front that is solely focused on one issue - the industrial athlete, and making them relevant in the future by driving value that is not seen necessarily, is our unique operation.” (21:58)
“We use a core set of values, and those values for us happen to be a cool acronym that ends up being sacred. But those values are things like self-improving, and our ability to stick to those is key for us to hire the same people as we build that scalable business.” (27:15)
“Your value as an entrepreneur and as an individual leader is your ability to synthesize. To disagree with some of the insights you may get, to agree with some of the insights you may get, but to synthesize your own thoughts based on the information that you pull in is hands down the most valuable asset.” (30:21)
206: Beer Saves The World... Again
Brian Crum and Bianca Tessa with Beyond the Tap
Hey everyone, welcome back to another episode of the Startup Junkies Podcast! This week, Caleb Talley and Jeff Amerine talk with Bianca Tessa and Brian Crum from Beyond the Tap. Beyond the Tap is a podcast that brings together the best of craft beer, wine, and spirits, which are made in Northwest Arkansas. They inspire, educate, and celebrate the people who are making it happen as they sit down with the top brewers, distillers, and vintners across the region. In this episode, you will get to hear about the story behind the creation of the Beyond the Tap podcast, learning experiences around creating and growing a podcast, and insights around the adult beverage industry during COVID-19. Check out the episode!
Once again, we are back with another episode of the Startup Junkies Podcast! This week, Caleb Talley, Jeff Amerine, and Matthew Ward have an in-depth chat with Omid Moghadam, the founder and CEO of Namida Labs. Namida Labs uses unconventional approaches to develop quick solutions for current healthcare challenges. They have been an effective in creating large scale antibody testing for communities and large employers. In this episode, Omid discusses his expedition to Fayetteville, Arkansas; practical insights around COVID-19 related decisions and testing; and the meaning behind the company name "Namida". Buckle up for a great episode!
Welcome back everyone! This week, Caleb Talley, Jeff Amerine, and Matthew Ward talk with Stacie Bloomfield, founder and artist of Gingiber. Gingiber is a creative company that aims to encourage and inspire others to live their fullest lives through workshops, products, and other areas. In this episode, some of the insightful information you will get to hear about include: Gingiber's pivot during COVID-19, the process behind creating a timeless product, and the management of quality behind a product. Listen in on this great episode!
Welcome back folks! It is another great week with the Startup Junkie crew. This week, Caleb Talley, Jeff Amerine, and Matthew Ward zoom with Allan Peretz, founder and President of Bold Strategies, Inc. Bold Strategies brings together proven CPG experts and emerging digital talent to create custom e-commerce departments for their clients. In this episode, some of the interesting topics you will get to hear about are Allan's journey leading up to Bold Strategies, the effect of COVID-19 on e-commerce and retail strategy, and the vision of Bold Strategies. Do not miss out on these nuggets of information!
202: Flamingo Springs Trailer Resort - Your Next Retreat
GUESTS: Laura and Zack Kraus
Hey everyone! Welcome to another week of the Startup Junkies Podcast! This week, Caleb Talley, Jeff Amerine, and Matthew Ward have a chat with Laura and Zack Kraus, founders of Flamingo Springs Trailer Resort. Flamingo Springs Trailer Resort is a 1950's Palm Springs inspired trailer resort featuring eight renovated and themed vintage travel trailers from the 1950's-70's. The trailers are permanently parked in a semi-circle surrounding a pool, astroturf and fire pit, and can be rented by the night. In this episode, you will get to hear about the creative process around Pink Flamingo, Laura and Zack's journey to Arkansas, and difficulties around building the resort. Listen in on this great talk!
(1:06) Flamingo Springs Trailer Resort
(2:54) How It Started
(8:24) How has COVID impacted Flamingo Springs Trailer Resort?
(10:14) Funny Stories around the trailers
(14:08) How did it all really come together, here, in Northwest Arkansas?
(21:43) What challenges have they faced?
(29:32) Laura and Zack share about things they know now that they didn’t when they first started.
(31:58) Closing Thoughts
It's another week of the Startup Junkies Podcast! This week, Caleb Talley, Jeff Amerine, Jeff Standridge, and Matthew Ward talk with Martial Trigeaud, serial entrepreneur and Chief Operating Officer of Vascugenix Incorporated. Vascuegenix Inc. is a medical device company focused on developing innovative products to improve patient safety during interventional cardiology procedures. In this episode, you will hear about Martial's journey from France, his illustrious cycling resume, and Vascugenix's innovative product called the Speed-Torque. We hope you enjoy this exciting episode!
(01:52) Martial’s Story
(04:34) Vascugenix Incorporated Overview
(10:30) What are the future plans for vascular genetics?
(12:32) The transition from advisor to a member of an executive team
(15:58) Let’s talk cycling
(26:27) Work-Life differences between France and the United States
(28:05) Martial’s Remodeling projects
(30:05) If you could take all the knowledge that you've accumulated at your current age and give some advice to your younger self when you were starting out your journey, what would that advice be?
“And that's why I feel Vascugenix is going to be a very successful company because we really think about the 360 view from the worst scenario to the best scenario and everything in between.” (14:53)
So I feel like sometimes we need to push a little bit on people, but I understand at the same time, you don't want to push too hard on people because it's complex. Life in the US is very complex because you have family issues, financial issues. I mean, I understand all of that. I think we should do a mix of both where we need to push people a little bit more but manage them correctly for them to do a good job. (27:28)
“Be a learner. The first thing is to learn how to learn. Understand what is valuable and what is not valuable.” (30:24)