What does your company do?
Code Coast Consulting is a provider of product management, IT training and strategic professional services. A unique component of our business is a portfolio of Code Ninjas franchises that provide technology training to children between the ages of 5 and 15. In our center, kids learn to code in a fun, non-intimidating way by playing and building video games they love. We create, optimize, design and develop experiences that improve value and increase customer satisfaction. We prepare individuals and organizations for a future that will be dominated by technology and innovation.
What is your background and how did you get into the business?
At 17, I started a local courier service called Clark Delivery and we delivered “everything but babies.” That ignited my passion for business and entrepreneurship. After college, I sold this business and began a diverse career, serving eight years in the U.S. Air Force, working in electronic warfare and aviation. I transitioned into the corporate environment, where I led initiatives and teams to develop, innovate and create better products, solutions and services.
I have always had a passion for small business, collaborating directly with clients, growing businesses and helping others directly by providing the best solutions. That led me to take the leap and open Code Coast Consulting. We have an opportunity to shape the future and share our experience to provide others exceptional support and expand our influence to innovate and develop better solutions.
What sets your company apart from others?
There are many paths to gaining exposure to innovation and technology. We turn education into entertainment by providing organizations and our Code Ninjas tools that build a fun, engaging, and creative spaces that foster learning and prepare them to achieve their goals. We see technology and coding as core components to their success. No matter their goal, technology is engrained in all we do; it is now a basic requirement for all of society, just like reading, writing and arithmetic.
What is the biggest challenge your business faces?
The demands of the consumer are continually evolving. We must invest capital continually to provide technologies and develop curriculum that is robust, purposeful and value-added. We cannot rest when one of our programs is successful because, within a short timeframe, it will become obsolete. We must constantly seek opportunities to improve our services. This is the power of the Code Ninjas franchise. We have a team of developers and educators working behind the scenes to constantly update and improve our curriculum.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Just like when I was a soccer coach, the greatest joy is seeing the development of your players and teams. Seeing our Code Ninjas gain new knowledge, mature, belt up and achieve their goals is always an amazing and rewarding experience. We really cherish opportunities to celebrate the successful delivery of a project and the obtainment of new levels in our programs.
Every day is motivating, knowing we are having a positive impact. We help develop critical skills, in addition to coding, like critical thinking and problem solving, that will provide the foundation for a successful and productive life.
What advice do you have for aspiring entrepreneurs?
“Surround yourself with successful people and follow the advice of successful people.” At its core, success breeds success. When you have a problem, successful people find solutions. When you are around other people, you can be influenced by their actions and traits. You notice their successful approaches, how they navigate challenges and how they can turn setbacks into learnings and improvement. Find positive, goal-oriented individuals and learn as much as possible, pick up their positive habits and always bring a “can-do” ethos. As an entrepreneur, you have the power to make anything possible!
What does being an entrepreneur mean to you?
If there was one thing I wish we could change, it is the stigma that many people associate with business and business leaders in general. The reason I transitioned from the military back into the private sector and ultimately rekindled and acted on my passion for entrepreneurship was to affect positive change and help create a better future. Creating a better future is accomplished by providing better products and services to consumers, which make it easier to manage their lives, lower their costs and improve efficiency and customer experience. Being an entrepreneur is about being a positive change agent who is driving change and solutions.