Be an Asset, Not a Liability | Lessons from A Startup Founder
Keith Harband is an expert marketer and an accomplished business person. His vast experience from multiple high-profile positions has led him to his next big idea, startup company New Enamel.com. Keith has been kind enough to offer some insights into what it takes to get into the business world, and ideas for our young audience to consider for their future.
Discussion with Startup Founder Keith Harband
Thanks again Keith for your time, it’s a pleasure to get your insights. Please tell us a little about yourself
I am Keith Harband, Founder and President of NewEnamel.com. NewEnamel.com is a Teledentistry website that provides prescription strength dental care at home. We took a therapeutic dental care protocol pioneered at UCSF Dental School in 2006 that prevents and even reverses tooth decay. We applied cutting-edge technology to the process so everything can be done online. It is evidence-based, clinically tested…which means: It works! No more cavities!
Wow, no cavities is hard to beat. To get yourself into the position you’re in, what kind of education did you get and what interested you about a new company?
I have a BS [Bachelor of Science] and an MBA [Masters of Business Administration]. This company is a start-up [a company that’s new and starting out] that began with a good idea that I was able to execute.
Where did you start your career and how did you end up where you are?
I started my career in the Hotel business after graduating from college. It is an industry that requires long hours, dedication, a positive attitude, a love of being of service to people. These can be applied to any job in any industry. I then went into Marketing, and after a career working for a number of companies (Disney, Scholastic, Discovery Channel) I decided to pursue this startup to help people achieve better oral health.
What tips or suggestions would you offer to a young person that is looking to get into the business world?
To get into my industry, take as many classes as you can in a variety of subjects: accounting, finance, English, math, history, etc.
As we are promoting strong foundational principles to our learners, what would you tell a young person looking to get experience?
Get a job(s), be a great employee, be curious, ask questions, and learn all that you can about any business you start or work for. Be an asset, not a liability. Have your boss’s back: be dependable, on time, not the first to punch out. Pay attention to everything: learn, learn, learn. And save your money!
Save your money is what we consistently promote as well! If you could go back to your teenage days, what one thing would you do differently to help you get ahead?
If I could go back, I would have worked part-time at multiple jobs to learn as much as I could about business. I had jobs, but wasn’t exposed to many different companies or bosses…I believe that that is important and helpful.
Now that we’ve discussed how to successfully get into a position to earn, what is one thing every teenager should start or do today to begin a successful financial future?
Set up a bank account with a checking account and be disciplined about depositing your money, gifts, and paychecks into them.
Do you have advice from your experiences that you would like to pass on to any young adult reading this?
My advice: Be curious. Learn all you can. Read for pleasure every day. Read biographies and business books (go to the public library…all books are free to check out). Be a critical thinker. Work, study hard. Get good grades and be a good citizen. Help make the world a better place. Be kind to your siblings and obey your parents…you may not believe it, but they know a lot…and more stuff than you. If you can’t do that trust another family member to be your champion/mentor: uncle, aunt, cousin, grandparent, etc.
Do you have any other information you’d like to pass on to our readers?
Make time for some (healthy) fun…you are only a teenager once.
And the important health message that everybody should remember?
Take care of your teeth! You only have one set of them to last your whole life.
Thank you very much for your time Keith, we are grateful that you spent time sharing your experiences. Best of luck at NewEnamel.com
By: Robert Puharich | March 24, 2022 |