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Turning a Gelato Shop Into a 16 Store Franchise, With Frost Gelato

Is it possible to build a successful business with your best friend? Stephen and Jeffrey of the Frost Gelato Shoppe franchise seem to think so. They’ve been friends since second grade and credit the deep trust that they’ve built up over their entire lives to helping them survive over 13 years of being in business together. But how do you go from never starting a business, to opening a Gelato shop in an underdeveloped part of Tucson Arizona and franchising the business within just three...


5 Minute Pick Me Up - The Case For Doing Door To Door Sales

Often, as a founder, you have to be willing to do things that others aren't. In this 5 Minute Pick me Up episode we talk about why seemingly antiquated techniques like selling door to door, are a great way to get business in the early days. We also tell the story of 2 founders that we worked with who came up with an idea for a product that would be great for restaurants, and validated that it had a huge potential market by talking to 80 restaurant owners in 3 weeks.


How Kyle Bergman Sold 6 Figures In Sweatpant Overalls While Working Full Time And Going To School

Most apparel startups don’t generate 6 figures in gross profit within 1 year of launching. But then, most apparel companies aren’t run by a solo entrepreneur who until recently was balancing working on his business with a full time job at Birchbox, pursuing his MBA at NYU, working part-time as a physical trainer at Orange Theory, and playing for the Israeli National LaCrosse team. If that wasn’t enough, he’s also a photographer and videographer on the side and occasionally works with major...


5 Minute Pick Me Up - How I Met Daymond John

In this edition of the 5 Minute Pick Me Up, Sergei tells the story of how getting rid of his fear of approaching new people helped him meet Daymond John. You will hear about how Sergei started meeting more people by getting comfortable starting conversations with anyone. You'll learn how to overcome a fear that's limiting you by reframing what the potential outcomes could be. And you'll hear a few suggestions of what to say to people when you first meet them.


Negotiating Salaries, Speeding Tickets and Used Cars

Winning a negotiation is simpler than most people think. While becoming a master negotiator takes a lot of practice, being good at negotiating comes down to understanding a few very basic principals. In this episode we walk through three common negotiation scenarios, starting with a salary negotiation, to illustrate how you can be better positioned to win when entering a similar discussion. A successful negotiation begins before the meeting ever takes place. Your goal is to be as prepared as...


5 Minute Pick Me Up - Testing A New Idea Part 1

This week we decided to try a new concept and take you along on a journey to see how it works out. With this episode, we’re hoping to motivate you to try that new idea that you’ve been thinking about for a long time, but not acting on. The idea is a virtual competition that we’re calling a “Validation Challenge.” This will be a competition with prize money where anyone can apply to try and validate a business idea during nights and weekends over a period of just two weeks. Here are our goals...


How Food Period Built A Loyal Customer Base To Help Women Have Great Periods Naturally

80% of women report issues related to their period, from irregularities and inconsistencies, to debilitating pain that doesn’t seem to subside. The Founders of Food Period (discount code THEMENTORS20) are on a mission to help women everywhere through a completely natural process called seed syncing. They’ve simplified the complicated seed consumption protocol by creating delicious energy bites that get sent to your door every month. Within just a few months, for less than the cost of a...


5 Minute Pick Me Up - Starting a Revenue Generating Training Business in 3 Weeks

In this episode you’ll hear a story about how Vadim and I had to shut down a failing business and start another one within a matter of weeks. We’ll walk through the steps we took to test and start a training services business from scratch with no prior client list, and no training curriculum. In this episode you will learn how we: 1) Narrowed down a list of potential skills we have that we could teach 2) Narrowed down a list of potential clients we could target for this new program 3) Tested...


How Justin Dent Started A Multimillion Dollar Non-Profit While In College

At 16 years old Justin secured a full time internship on Capitol Hill. By 19, he was running a quickly growing student organization designed to bring financial literacy programs to students on campus. This informal program would soon land him support from Bernie Marcus, one of the founder's of Home Depot, and a quarter of a million dollar commitment to help launch a non-profit called GenFKD (Generation Financial Knowledge and Development, one of the meanings of that acronym). In this episode...


5 Minute Pick Me Up - Sell Before You Build

The biggest mistake you can make as an entrepreneur is to spend all of your time and resources building a product without doing the proper validation - ie: figuring out who your customer is, and confirming that this customer is willing to pay for your product. This 5 Minute Pick Me Up is a story about a founder that we mentored who made this classic mistake. Fortunately, the story has a happy ending. His team had spent over a year building a product with hundreds of features, with the idea...


How SoaPen Plans To Save 1 Million Children A Year, With Forbes 30 Under 30 Amanat Anand

1.5 Million children die each year due to diarrhea. Proper handwashing with soap can prevent over two-thirds of those deaths. Amanat Anand didn't know that she wanted to be an entrepreneur, but when she came across this statistic she instantly knew what she wanted to do. She entered a business plan competition with a simple idea. Children need access to soap and a reason to wash their hands consistently. By making their products affordable and fun to use for kids, SoaPen can accomplished...


5 Minute Pick Me Up – The Uber Driver Entrepreneur With A Fleet Of 12 Cars

This week's 5 Minute Pick Me Up was inspired by my Uber ride from the airport this morning when I was picked up by an ordinary gentleman that was secretly building an extraordinary business. The reason he was driving an Uber today? Market research. I knew something was different about him when he started telling me that he never flies from LaGuardia airport. It turns out that he used to fly a lot for his job, which of course lead me to dig deeper. I learned that he not only ran his own IT...


How To Tell Your Boss You're Quitting

Quitting a job can feel exhilarating and intimidating at the same time. In a perfect world, you're leaving on good terms and have a supportive boss that offers you future opportunities for mentorship and references. Unfortunately, these circumstances are usually far from perfect. Many people leave their jobs because they're unhappy, and the source of this unhappiness typically comes from the people that they work for. There's many misconceptions about what to expect from this process, and...


5 Minute Pick Me Up - Superior Auto Steam (Mack)

Here at The Mentors, we're all about explaining how people just like us can go from having no experience, to running a successful company. Today we’re launching a new series called 5 Minute Pick Me Up. One of the recurring themes on this show, shared by everyone from Max Altchuler, who just sold his company Sales Hacker to, to the Hey Lady shoes twins Emily and Jessica, and even to our story about our father, is that most people don't get started with a fully baked brilliant idea...


The Secret to Finding Big Opportunities, with Carey Smith of Big Ass Fans

How do you mint 15 new millionaires over night? Carey Smith of Big Ass Fans knows how. He committed to growing his industrial fan company for as long as it took, until he was certain that his most hardworking employees could also become rich from the sale of his company. That meant waiting until he could sell it for $500 million, giving away 10% of that to his team. Carey doesn't like to call himself an entrepreneur. He's been creating businesses since he was a teenager, and it's simply part...


How To Get Recognized On The Streets Of Philadelphia

We get stopped on the streets quite a lot. Not because we were secretly star child actors, or because people recognize us from the Open Mics we do around the city. It's because we're twins. Okay - once on an uptown bus we sat in front of two elderly women who kept starring at us, later getting up the nerve to ask us what TV show they saw us in (still wonder who they were mistaking us for) - but that's about it. Yesterday, as we were walking down the street to grab some lunch in Philly, we...


How To Make It In America

This is the final part of our series about our father, Samuel Revzin, who built one of the most successful schools in Soviet Belarus, only to have to start all over in a new career at the age of 54. In this episode we tell the story of how our mother and father made the difficult decision to pack their bags and move halfway around the world to make a better life for their children here in the United States. With few employment prospects for recent immigrants, they had to do menial work for...


What's The Point Of An Advisor And How Do You Find One?

Most startups seem to have advisors listed in their pitch decks, but it's not always clear what they actually do. Not every company needs a formal advisory board, but there's a reason why it's common practice for many startups to have one. Even the most experienced CEOs can't possibly be experts in every single aspect of their business and industry, and advisors are the people they often turn to to answer difficult questions, or help make critical industry introductions. This is especially...


How To Do What You Love In A Communist Country - Part II

This is a continuation of How To Do What You Love In a Communist Country Part I - a story of our father, a man who didn't finish high school until he was 29 years old, and ended up building an education empire in one of the most oppressive areas of the world, only to have to start his career all over again in the United States in his early 50s. We walk you through his rise in Soviet Belarus, from the workaholic nature that compelled him to take on triple the work load of any other educator,...


Building a National Food Brand With No Investors, with Michael Levine

One in five children in the United States goes hungry every day. That statistic might be surprising to most, but to Michael Levine, it became a calling - a reason to build an organization whose guiding mission is to reduce that number drastically. 500 food products and seven brands later, Global Food Solutions is continuing their work by partnering with government institutions, all without raising a single dollar of outside capital. Entrepreneurship is a marathon, not a sprint. Over the...