Lesson Labs


Entrepreneurship: Do You Have What It Takes?

8/10 @ 12:30-1:30pm

How do you know that entrepreneurship is right for you, your family, and your finances? Starting a business is no joke, especially if you are a first time entrepreneur. It requires a certain level of emotional and business acumen that you need to be prepared for. In this course we will discuss the foundations of entrepreneurship, work through identifying your personal motivations, debunk myths, and talk about the pros and cons of a co-founder. It is vital to have a solid foundation before you start to build!

About the Instructor

Jermaine Brown Jermaine is a lifelong entrepreneur and leader with experience in business development, operations and e-commerce. Jermaine has worked in a variety of industries with a focus in technology, e-commerce and automotive.
Jermaine is a prior member of EO Atlanta Chapter and the E-Commerce Board of Directors for Fedex. He is a native of Baton Rouge, LA and earned a bachelor of science degree in Finance from Louisiana State University.

Turning an Idea and Skill Into a Business.

8/17 @ 12:30-1:30pm

All businesses start with an idea! Let us walk you through the idea generation for starting a company. Identify what problem you can solve and then evaluate the skills, network, and knowledge you have that could turn into business. What are you created uniquely to do? Learn the pros and cons of different types of businesses from services to products and how you can set yourself up for success. Not all businesses are created equal, and we can help you navigate what’s best for you.

About the Instructor

Lakeysha Hallmon Dr. Lakeysha Hallmon is a transformational leader and speaker. With over 15 years of experience in education, Dr. Hallmon has been a critical voice and advocate for creating empowering learning and work environments for students and employees and is deeply passionate about work efficacy and social-emotional learning.
In 2016, Dr. Hallmon founded the Village Market ATL and has been a catalyst in bringing national exposure to black-owned businesses. She has developed an economical vehicle that empowers the Black community through cooperative economics.

Testing Your Idea: Will Someone Pay You For It?

8/24 @ 12:30-1:30pm

Great ideas don’t always make great businesses. Before you spend time and money to build a company, you must be sure it’s something that people will actually pay for. We will teach you how to test your idea! Learn how to talk to potential customers, define your value proposition, and how to create demand for your ideal customer. Understanding this process and putting it into motion will save you money, time, and frustration.

About the Instructor

Rachel Ford Rachel Ford began her journey into Atlanta’s entrepreneurial ecosystem while an undergrad at Georgia Tech, co-founding a connected car startup, FIXD, in parallel with her biomedical engineering studies. She was a founding member of Georgia Tech’s Innovation and Design Collaborative and an instructor within Georgia Tech’s Venture Lab, teaching both evidence-based entrepreneurship and design thinking. Named one of Atlanta’s “30 Under 30” in 2015, Rachel shifted her focus to establishing Techstars’ presence as the first world-class startup accelerator in the southeastern United States, held in partnership with Cox Enterprises. Techstars Atlanta invests in 10 startups per year, running them through a 13 week accelerator program.

Company Creation: The Practical Steps Required to Establish a Business.

8/31 @ 12:30-1:30pm

Now that you have your idea, it’s time to create a company! Let’s talk practical details and deep dive into the creation of a new business. From creating your company name to designing a logo, filing for an LLC, getting a business license, opening a bank account, and building a website; it can be overwhelming. We will go over the basic requirements, best tools to use, and how to go about doing it all in a cost efficient way.

About the Instructor

Christina DeVictor Over the past decade, Christina has been fortunate to document people in an honest way around the world through her company, Someplace Wild. Alongside photography, Christina has been a marketing consultant for eight years, providing digital services to restaurants and creative brands. After many years working in the hospitality industry, Christina opened her own venture, Fellows Cafe alongside her husband Tony.

Developing Your Online Presence: Creating a Website and Social Media.

9/14 @ 12:30-1:30pm

Do you really exist as a business if people can’t google you? As you launch and grow your business, your online presence becomes crucial to attracting customers and validating your brand. They have to be able to find you to buy from you! Learn the step by step process of establishing social media handles and creating a website from grabbing that instagram handle to purchasing a URL, creating a template website, writing content, and publishing to your domain. You can do this and we will help.

About the Instructor

Jacey Lucus Jacey is an extreme extrovert with a passion for people, skilled in both high-level strategy and operational minutia. As the Marketing Lead for Atlanta Ventures, she is a self-starter who thinks outside the box, is organized, outgoing and reliable. Jacey is an experienced designer and marketer with expertise in brand strategy, employee engagement and development across all media.

Marketing Your Business and Developing Your Brand

9/21 @ 12:30-1:30pm

It’s hard to get anywhere efficiently without direction. A solid marketing plan and strategy is the path you need to grow your business and a vital part of the success and direction of your company. Learn the importance of branding and telling the story of the value you provide, where to market, who to market to, and how to execute the perfect strategy using your greatest tool - your customers.

About the Instructor

Lauren Patrick Lauren Patrick is a graduate of UGA's Grady College of Journalism & Mass Communication. She spearheaded 'smarketing' for a bevy of technology startups including Preparis, Urjanet, MemberSuite, Terminus, Bark, and Motivo. Most recently, Lauren became Vice President of Marketing at Curricula, a Cyber Security Awareness Training software designed to strengthen employee security culture with story-based learning and integrated phishing simulations.

Financial and Accounting Basics for Business Owners

9/28 @ 12:30-1:30pm

As a business owner, you need to have a strong understanding of basic accounting. It helps you to know if you are making money, how to forecast and plan, as well as how you can make more profit. Learn how to create a budget for your business, what the vocabulary means, and how to review your revenue, expenses, P&L statements, debt, and forecasting. We will walk you through setting up your first Quickbooks account and your business bank account so that once you have money coming in, you are ready for taxes and know how to take care of it.

About the Instructor

Matthew May Founder and VP of Sales and Marketing of Acuity. Acuity is a virtual accounting solution for entrepreneurs backed by the expertise of CFOs. This is twenty-first century accounting, built on the latest technology and managed by a dedicated team of accounting experts.
Since 2004, our CFO team has helped businesses build and maintain their accounting function through periods of rapid growth. Launched in 2013, Acuity also launched a process-based, remote accounting solution which is offered at guaranteed fixed monthly pricing. It is built on the latest accounting technologies (Technology), financial best practices (Process), and is supported by accounting experts (People).

Pricing and Product: Creating a Profitable and Sustainable Business Model.

10/5 @ 12:30-1:30pm

You can do a lot of great work, and still not make any money. So, let’s not do that. We will teach you about different business models and how to choose one that will help you navigate how to create a profitable business. Learn how to set pricing and conduct a competitive analysis. Learn what makes a business a good one and how to keep it sustainably producing revenue. Quantify your hard costs and then craft a business model that works for you.

About the Instructor

A.T. Gimbel A.T. Gimbel is a partner with Atlanta Ventures, focused on helping entrepreneurs find community, content, and capital to successfully grow their business. Previously, A.T. led product and go-to-market functions for the Healthcare division of LexisNexis, as well as leading roles in corporate strategy and mergers & acquisitions. Prior to that, he was in consulting with Bain & Company serving clients across multiple industries with a focus on growth strategy, process improvement, and customer loyalty. He has also worked for several startup companies in sales and operations roles.

Operation Management: How to Run Your Business.

10/12 @ 12:30-1:30pm

Now that you have created a business, you have to actually run it. A Founder does it all: hiring, managing, accounting, selling, at least at first. This lesson will take you through best practices on how to run a business and the recommended tools to use. You will learn how to set business goals, keep you on track to meet them, and sell to your customers in a way that turns them into raving fans.

About the Instructor

Ethan King From starving artist to owning multiple million-dollar brands, Ethan King adds a new dimension of “cool” to entrepreneurship.
The co-founder/CEO of Zeus’ Closet also serves as former Atlanta chapter president, and global member-leader, in the nonprofit Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), helping 14,000+ business owners in 62 countries grow personally and professionally.

Company Culture and People Management

10/19 @ 12:30-1:30pm

Culture is king and in the world of startups, a lack of defined culture can negatively impact your success. A Founder is the creator and keeper of how others experience your company. Laying down a foundation for your team includes a deep understanding of and the ability to articulate your “why”. Learn how to develop a vision, mission statement, and core values, as well as how to not just manage your team, but lead them with focus, passion, and alignment.

About the Instructor

Kyle Porter Kyle Porter is the CEO of SalesLoft, a B2B sales information company in Atlanta, Ga. The business creates sales engagement software to help companies boost pipeline and transform teams into modern sales organizations.

Hiring: Sourcing, Training, and Leading a Team.

10/26 @ 12:30-1:30pm

Hiring a team can feel scary especially if you’ve come this far solo. How do you best equip others when you are new to entrepreneurship yourself? Learning how to manage and train your team without spending a lot of money may feel impossible but with the correct tools, it can be done and done well. Together we will do a deep dive into hiring and what it looks like to build and lead your dream team.

About the Instructor

Amy Zimmerman Amy is a strategic partner for founders and investors and a growth catalyst for companies on the rise. Central to her work, of course, is the development and nurturing of a company’s culture. Whether the focus is on foundational elements, like defining core values and communication practices or developing more mature programs like performance development and engagement initiatives, it’s all in service to ensure that the culture is intentional and aligned with the company’s financial goals and retention objectives.

For the last decade, Amy was Chief People Officer for global fintech leader, Kabbage, Inc, where she scaled the company from under 20 employees in one city to over 600 across the US and India. She was responsible for building the company’s award-winning culture, driving engagement, and guiding all people strategy initiatives. She oversaw the integration of M+A teams to build and grow capabilities across a diversity of cultures and geographies.

Funding Opportunities and Raising Capital.

11/2 @ 12:30-1:30pm

Money, money, money! The best source of funding for any business is paying customers (seriously). But sometimes you need a leg up to launch or scale, and that’s where funding can come in and money is rarely free. Learn the many ways you can fund your business from small business loans, to grants, investors, crowdfunding, and even bootstrapping - we will walk you through the how, why, and pros/cons of each. Get pitch tips including valuation discussions and key metrics you will be asked for. Let’s explore the type of funding that may be best for you.

About the Instructor

Kim Seals Kim is an active investor in early-stage technology, health care, energy, fintech, consumer product, and media companies. The JumpFund has invested in more than 25 woman-led, Southeast based companies since 2013, across our two venture capital funds. Kim has more than twenty-five years of global expertise in human resource consulting, corporate and leadership roles. Kim’s experience includes leading M&A transactions, service delivery transformation, talent, compensation, benefits and recruiting program design, as well as technology development, selection and implementations. Kim received a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Louisiana State University.