OUT TO LUNCH finds creative business consultant Aileen Bennett conducting business Acadiana style: over lunch. Each week Aileen invites guests from Acadiana's business community to join her. Beyond the foundations of the Acadiana economy - oil, cuisine, music - there is a vast network of entrepreneurs, small businesses, and even some of the country's largest companies who call Acadiana home. Out to Lunch is the cafeteria of the wider Acadiana business community. You can also hear the show on KRVS 88.7FM.
There's an old saying in business that's half joke and half warning and can be applied to any location. In this case let's say Acadiana.: "Do you know how to make a small fortune in Lafayette? Start with a big one."
Of course it's much easier to lose money than to make it, but the fear of failure doesn't scare off the (usually young) person with real entrepreneurial fire in their belly. The trick is channeling enthusiasm and passion into channels that will result in less talk and more business.
The Opportunity Machine launched in 2009 to help Lafayette entrepreneurs turn ideas into reality. The Opportunity Machine, as its title suggests, give entrepreneurs opportunities to access classes and expertise from successful local business people in every aspect of building a company - from making and marketing a product to doing your taxes.
The Executive Director of The Opportunity Machine is Zach Barker.
Pete Prados is the Director of Innov8 Acadiana. The number 8 in Innov8 represents the 8 parishes in Acadiana. Innov8 has helped develop and find financing for a number of fascinating startup businesses, some of which we’ve featured on previous editions of Out to Lunch, including Wade Clément’s Lift Horse and Wayne Nix’s Nix Tool. There are many more, some of which Pete tells Peter on this edition of Out to Lunch.
Dr. Blake Escudier defies the laws of physics by being in 3 places at once. Sitting at his desk in his office in Lafayette, Blake is an online professor of marketing at Kaplan University, and teaches the MBA program - online - at the University of Fredericton in New Brunswick, Canada. Among a long list of impressive academic business exploits, Blake previously taught consumer behavior to students in Silicon Valley at San Jose University.
If you've got an idea for a business in Acadiana or you want to know what business plans other people around here are hatching, check out this conversation.