Practicing What I Preach: Launching a Business Publisher/Editor

I say to my students of Entrepreneurship at Tufts University ...... forget your inhibitions let's just come up with an idea that seems almost impossible but makes you smile -- gets your heart fluttering and is something people want and need. I ask them to think out of the box. Dare to Dream.  And so for three years running this is how we begin our first class each semester.

During the course of the 3 plus months my 30 plus students are divided into business teams and work on their ideas--- which they have devised, pitched to the class and refined. Most students have no prior business knowledge as they are undergrads in a non-business school environment.  All the better - they are free to create without the negative mind chatter which inhibits creativity. Miraculously, I watch them transform into creative business people dealing with writing a full blown 30 page business plan complete with an analysis of their industries. competition, marketing and financial plans. They make their presentations to a panel of judges who are potential investors and they actually sound like authentic businesses by the close of the semester.

This past semester was particularly exciting because I challenged myself to launch my new business along with them. I presented my business and met with a rousing ovation I practiced what I had been preaching.  Although I have been a publisher all of my life, my publishing company was sold over 10 years ago yet my love for publishing was still powerful.  I am proud to have launched my first on-line magazine and in just 8 weeks our readership has taken off. This journey has been so exciting and I am thrilled to be returning to my next semester with my own business launched. Armed with what looks like a growing business, I am ready to push those next students off the edge yet again.

Felice Shapiro