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Michael View

Entrepreneurs: born or bred?

19 September 2010

What makes someone successful in business? Were they born to it or did they learn it?

For some entrepreneurs, such as Aimee Marks, the path to success has been through a university course. Despite getting the idea for her biodegradable tampon company, T.O.M Organic, at school, Marks decided a university course would develop her product and company in a more thorough manner with a secure network of mentors to support her.

‘The course taught me the fundamentals of launching and growing a business, and helped me avoid mistakes,‘ she says. ‘But ultimately entrepreneurship is about passion. If you are not really driven by an idea, no course will turn you into an entrepreneur.‘
And many would agree, there are countless stories of successful entrepreneurs who have turned a unique idea into a thriving business through personal dedication, without the benefit of a university course.

One such team are nephew and uncle, Sean Condon and Tom O‘Dowd, who are cashing in on the current Power Band craze. Thought to improve balance, strength and stability, the band has no medical foundation but many are convinced of its bohemian effects providing an annual turnover of more than a million dollars.

Condon basically fell across the band during a paddleboard lesson in Bali, the instructor telling him of its benefits. Recognising potential he convinced his uncle to join him in buying the Australasian importing rights.

As with many entrepreneurs, Condon and O‘Dowd treat their business as a job and work hard to promote the band. A carpenter by trade, O‘Dowd does not profess to understand the reasons behind the power of the band but saw the potential and ran with it.

Perhaps the answer is that it depends on the entrepreneur.

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