Entrepreneurs from across Hampton Roads gathered June 12 to celebrate at the Inside Business 10th Annual Entrepreneurial Excellence Awards.
“Entrepreneurship is an incredible part of our nation’s well being and is a key to having our communities thrive. Today we celebrate all of your successes in making this happen in our own community,” said Dr. Doris Gomez, dean of Regent University’s School of Business & Leadership (SBL), which is one of the event sponsors.
A panel discussion before the awards luncheon provided an opportunity for business owners, presidents, and visionaries to share stories, hardships and practical tools for starting a business. Some of the topics discussed included how to secure start-up funding and how to navigate the waters of the rapidly changing digital and technological age.
SBL professor and MBA program direction, Dr. Greg Stone, moderated this year’s panel and said he was impressed at how the panel and audience shared various experiences and how they managed differently in their own businesses.
For example, Stone described differences in approaches to social media marketing. “One of the attendees was asked by his company to stop tweeting so much because he had gone overboard…and at the same time another attendee shared how their social media had been helping grow the company’s audience. So there are many ways to do things in a business, but once everyone shared their stories and experiences, we began to learn and truly relate to one another as entrepreneurs looking to do something great and become successful.”
Stone noted that he was also impressed by one start-up that “didn’t even wait for funds from anyone else, they just put down their own and got to work!”
These comments displayed the caliber of people recognized at this awards ceremony every year: ambitious, determined, humble and innovative in every way. During the luncheon program, 12 people received awards for demonstrating the true spirit of entrepreneurship.
Overall, the event highlighted the heartbeat of entrepreneurship: passion and perseverance. Every award and honoree worked through various circumstances to reach excellence and success. Mike Herron, publisher of Inside Business, closed the event by honoring all who were awarded and attended.
“They wanted to start something and do something good to create wealth and create jobs and that is why we honor and celebrate them today,” he said.