Member Stories

What is your story?

Tell us about the ways in which NaperLaunch has helped you and your business to grow. To post a story, you must be a NaperLaunch member     APPLY for NaperLaunch membership or LOGIN »

The opportunity to make a pitch at NaperLaunch was a wonderful incentive to refine my focus. The members were supportive and offered excellent feedback that I was able to use right away. It was also encouraging to hear the pitches of other business founders. I was able to improve my message and marketing and grow my business significantly in just a few months.

— Rich Haglund, RH3 Consulting LLC

NaperLaunch Academy is the second-best thing that happened to me, only exceeded by first starting our business. I didn’t realize until I completed the whole course, the journey and the whole training process have indeed transformed my perspective slowly. I will cherish this experience forever. I owe it to the entire team at NaperLaunch for my inner growth as an entrepreneur. As a result, I feel more confident and resourceful. The benefits of attending the academy are, it empowered me with information, knowledge, and tools that I use in my daily activities like, plan my finances, talking to investors, and making a projection. I feel safe to go beyond my comfort zone knowing I have people with expertise at NaperLaunch I can lean on for advice and direction.

— Sivakumar Ramu, Radiance Biosciences

"My NaperLaunch membership has immensely helped me as a business owner in my first year of operations. I found it extremely beneficial to have the support and guidance of the mentors and to be able to be a part of a group of like minded business owners. There's enough room for us all to win and it shows that the experienced mentors want nothing more than that. They've helped me develop in a lot of my weaker and unattended areas of my business and I continue to utilize the teachings I learned during my time at the Academy. I look forward to seeing where not only my business goes, but those of my peers as well! Cheers to our success!"

— Jennifer Boukari, Godiva Financial Resources LLC

"What I gained from the [pitch] competition is the approach to which this competition was designed. It was very interesting to hear Kent Palmer say that it was structured in a way that encouraged the entrepreneur to keep striving and follow through. For example, it started with applying (easy enough). Next you had to submit a business plan. What if you have never had a business plan? Or it needs serious updates? This is definitely a place where we (entrepreneurs) can checkout on the process. Then the semi-final pitch.
This means your presentation has to be clear and convincing because you have to compete for the final 3 spots. All in all, my take away is this; stick with it and do your very best. Either way, you're still a winner!"

— Dapo Kolawole, Citispoon

"I have been attending NaperLaunch meetings for the past 6 months, and I have been blown away by the exceptional seminars, mentoring, networking and business support that is provided. Kent Palmer and his team are very warm, approachable and knowledgable. The speakers and subjects of the weekly meetings are always highly informative and engaging. If you are starting your own business, stepping out on your own can be difficult. I strongly encourage NaperLaunch. This community (specifically created for like-minded business owners), provides outstanding knowledge and information that will support your entrepreneurial endeavors tenfold!"

— Theresa Puskar, Edu-Tainment Productions / Dragon Soup Theatre Training & Productions
"I've increased my business, increased my sales. I've expanded my business lines because of the access and information I've gained through [the library]. And the library is my number one source, my go-to before I go anywhere else."

— Yorli Huff, business owner and entrepreneur
"Early on when we started our business we found NaperLaunch. It was a place where we could go and learn from other business owners and the mentors as we worked on improving everything about our fledgling business. Eventually we became a real business – sales, expenses, payroll – and could give back to the community by sharing our story and what did or didn’t work for us. We still learn from the other participants as we continuously problem solve and it’s a good place to go so you can think about what’s going on in your business."

— Elliot Hershik, Supporting Strategies
"NaperLaunch's multi-week Lean Canvas Model class isn't just for the aspiring entrepreneur! It helped this owner of an eight year old company see her business with new eyes through in-class discussions and meaningful homework assignments which included interviews with potential customers. We worked on product/service features, customer segments, pricing, marketing/distribution channels, and customer acquisition strategies. It wasn't easy but we had a lot of help from our facilitator, Kent Palmer, and many SCORE mentors at our disposal. My sales have already grown markedly since I've instituted what I learned in class. I highly recommend this class, not only for people thinking of starting a business but also for seasoned business owners who want to review and refine their business plans. Highly recommend!!"

— Clementine Calleja, Cool Science!
"I've been attending the NaperLaunch roundtable for about 18 months now. I first went thinking I might be able to find some like-minded people and keep current within my industry. What I found was several very smart people from all kinds of industries being very willing to share what they know. I've brought several different questions from various parts of my business and have always left with more than one great answer. The breadth of experience and perspective is hard to find anywhere, let alone for free.

"I've also been able to share what I know. I think I enjoy that part even more. I have experiences that others have not had and really enjoy sharing what I've learned so they can benefit and maybe come up with a better solution than I did. There are some regulars and I've made some great connections. I have resources I trust and can reach out to for myself or my customers."

— Jim King, Wheaton Website Services
"The Naperlaunch weekly roundtable has been very helpful to me in developing my business. There are always thoughtful and informed comments made to help other business owners with issues that may be common to everyone. I always learn something and meet somebody new. The discussions are well moderated.

"I participated in the Business Model course through NaperLaunch Academy. The most helpful activities from that experience were the potential client interviews and fellow business owners sharing their own struggles and ideas with each other."

— Wanda Schlafly, Sunshine Video Productions