Who Am I?
Hi, I’m Ken Aldrich and would like to introduce myself and perhaps give you a reason to listen to the series of blogs I have created, called “The Dream Toolbox”.
I am a serial entrepreneur and funder of seed stage companies. What that means is that I have founded a series of new companies on my own or with partners (11 to be exact) and have also been a source of financing for a large number of startups founded and managed by others (probably 50 or more, but I have lost track).
In those two roles, I have prepared and reviewed a wide variety of business plans, interviewed the founders (or been one myself) and have seen what worked and what didn’t work as people tried to make their dreams a reality.
Three critical things have become apparent:
1. Success has little to do with race, gender, or where the founder started on the economic ladder.
2. Academic degrees don’t matter much, but broad based knowledge and intellectual curiosity matter a lot. More specifically, skills in the use of language to persuade and inform, basic experience in the world of business, and specific skills related to the dream itself are critical.
3. Finally, a passionate desire to create something new and valuable to the world is an almost essential ingredient.
These are the framework in which I have created the blogs that make up The Dream Toolbox. I hope you will listen and find them helpful.
For more than 40 years I have been engaged as a self-employed entrepreneur, first in finance and real estate and then, for the last 20 years, in creating and funding start-up companies. I have founded 11 companies, 10 of which were successful in varying degrees, and helped to fund perhaps 50 more, some of which were spectacularly successful and some were failures. I learned a lot from both outcomes, including the obvious: success is a lot more fun than failure. But I also learned that in the US, failure is not fatal and can be a stepping stone to future success.
My initial training was as a lawyer and I worked for a major LA law firm for about 4 years before leaving to get some business experience and, finally, to start my own businesses.
Ken Aldrich, founder of Dream Toolbox and serial entrepreneur, speaking with students about the tools and mindset necessary to create and build YOUR dream. Don't miss this!