Michael Suman, author of “Should your idea become a business,” was the featured speaker at the Sept. 24 meeting of the Jackson Inventors Network (JIN). Suman, a long-time entrepreneur, shared his experiences in this presentation. He provided insight into how determine if ideas or inventions could make a viable business, including a review of potential risks and rewards and exit strategies.
Keynote speaker Suman, who holds 51 patents, described how he left a major auto component supplier 12 years ago to start his own business. He is featured every Tuesday (except the 1st) from 12:45 to 1:00 on NPR WGVU. His show is entitled “Innovation Talk”. Check it out here.
One of the the key take-aways from his presentation was for inventors and entrepreneurs to bootstrap as much as possible, and to focus on the execution of ideas, not just the ideas themselves. Also, inventors should realize they may not possess all the skills needed to bring a product to market – like marketing or finance/business – and should seek help or partners in disciplines they are not strong in.
Inventors sometimes like the discipline and drive to bring a product to market, he explained. They enjoy the creative side of product development, but not the work of “making 3,000 phone calls” to get a distribution deal.
The meeting kicked off with a presentation from Steve Raymond from TSR Technologies in Ohio, describing the latest innovations in the company’s one-valve engine. For a video of the engine and it’s potential, click here.
Board member Steve Ward also announced the JIN board is looking into developing a “maker space” for the Jackson area.