From Z. Kelly Queijo:
The keynote speaker for Radford University's Entrepreneural Summit was Brian Patrick Cork, serial entrepreneur, and a man with a plan--make that a 3-, 5-, and 7-year plan for any new business venture.
Cork should know, having started three companies. His latest and extremely successful, briancork Human Capital, is listed in Inc. 500’s fastest growing companies in 2007 and 2008.
"You gotta have a plan, in life, in business. It will make you think, research and execute. When you go off plan, you can adjust. If you don't have a plan, you can't execute, you can't adjust.”
Enrolling at Radford University in 1980 turned out to be a classic “life-changing experience” for Cork. “When I got to RU I had to navigate and negotiate those people on my own. They came from every economic strata...varying world views--I could not stop engaging everybody and, all of a sudden, there was Nick Pappas. He saw something in me. He told me I was an abomination and maybe I did not belong at the university. That guy made me love learning.”
Necessity Begets the Entrepreneur
Cork's very first plan was to become an Olympic track star. It fell through, literally--when he was caught leaping from the window of girl's dormitory during the era of “no boys allowed.” His scholarship days came to an abrupt end and he was on his own when it came to paying for college. He hit the road running as an entrepreneur. By the time he graduated in 1984, he had bought and sold his first company.
Now, 24 years later, he reflects on having become an entrepreneur in his post from The Human Capitol Blog: “...consider the understanding that being an Entrepreneur can mean living a few years of your life like most people won’t, so that [you] can spend the rest of your life like most people can’t. This can obviously mean financially. But, it can also mean you don’t look back over your professional life with regret.”
No regrets. I think that was the plan all along.
Z. Kelly Queijo writes about people and their passions for business and technology.
Read Brian Cork's guest blog post for Handshake 2.0.