•     Posted in:

Interview Re-cap: LPR’s Steve Scott Interviewing ROC CEO Ron McElroy


In a recent revealing interview on Leadership Point Radio, Steve Scott more than interviewed but challenged ROC CEO, Ron McElroy, to critically analyze exactly what ROC is, does and stands for.

 “Work environment is not about four walls anymore,” ROC provides workspace -“evolved”.-Ron McElroy

 


  •     Posted in:
The majority of Entrepreneurs work more than 40 hours per week and are available, or in the office, virtually 24/7. This is not to point out that being a ‘work-a-holic’ often goes along with the job description for most successful business owners, but being available whenever the need dictates has become a more productive way of accomplishing more goals in a given day, week, or year. This ability is sometimes directly related to conducting international deals as it relates to the time difference of “normal business hours”, yet even those that primarily do business locally utilize these zealous productive traits.  Of course none of this would be possible without the progression of technology which now fully and reliably supports  a 24/7 work schedule, and since technology has yet to master being able to allow us to be two places at the same time (TuPac and Michael Jackson aside) working with virtual tools is not just a convenience, but a necessity for success. It's safe to say that virtual working, is working.

Working Remotely or Remotely Working

A decade ago working “remotely” was more like “remotely working”, where employers and clients were still hesitant about the freedom, independence and reliability of a company or its employees, today “flex” jobs are much more mainstream and even favored to a business with set hours of operation only.  Multi-tasking has been under attack for decades, and like wine, one day its good for you, the next day it’s not, and there’s no avoiding the need for this skill when working virtually. Not everyone can or wants to work remotely or even off-site because of the distractions and lack of supervision, so working virtually does not work for all employees or companies as a whole.  Being independent, self-motivated, technically savvy, having prior remote working experience and proven time management capabilities are all specific traits that should be proven prior to a virtual working relationship.


 Technology and international business are changing, evolving and growing faster than the boom of the Industrial Revolution and it’s perfectly normal to think the way we work nowadays is a little crazy. Have you seen the new treadmill desks? We all want to be more productive of course, and the physicality of the new workplace emerging out from the cubicle has been coined the “third age of virtual working”, it too is still evolving.

Back in a 2012 article,  Forbes noted that the New World of Work emerging was working virtually and they even predicted that by 2016 as many as 63 million Americans will be working virtually, a dramatic rise from the roughly 34 million accounted for in 2010. According to the most recent statistics from Global Workplace Analytics the national “Telework Force” as of September 2013 continued to rise between 4-8% and small businesses to large corporations are catching on. The Global Workplace Analytics website has a wealth of resources relating to the benefits and potential profit boosting strategies, including a Telework Savings Calculator that will tell you just how much in real dollars changing the way we think about work can positively affect our bottom line.

Working virtually doesn't even mean alone at home, in your pajamas (although its still a nice image to conjure up), in fact those that work remotely often have very busy (if not busier) face-to-face time schedules and they appreciate (often get more out of) that personal interaction a bit more than the average office employee. Balance is  the key to effectively juggling all the balls that life throws at you. Managing your working relationships and work time also require a balance of independent working and co-working.  Catching on to this trend early, all of the ROC locations offices are designed specifically with the new workplace and "third age of virtual working" in mind.      
  •     Posted in:
What’s hotter than Comic Con in San Diego? San Diego Startup Week is quickly becoming one of the hottest passes to possess and for good reasons, professionally speaking. Of course Comic Con highlights the creative genius of the under and other worlds, San Diego Startup Week focuses on the real world of entrepreneurialism and it is the “region’s premier catalyst for innovation”, as the event is described on the official event website.  As you can surmise, this is not a single day event. San Diego Startup Week kicks off June 17th and runs through Saturday June 21st with a huge lineup of events, mentoring, product demos and highlights, parties, friendly competitions and networking opportunities galore!

As of today the Early Bird Passes have been completely sold out for the 5 day event, and tickets are going fast. The Standard Week Pass for SD Startup Week is just $55.

Where there is an innovative buzz, ROC is always present, and SD Startup Week is certainly no exception. ROC will be co-sponsoring SD Startup week and an event on June 20th for #GOSAN DIEGO DAY in which Startup America CEO Scott Case will be both in attendance and a guest speaker at.

The $184.9 million project of the newly redesigned San Diego Central Library was just completed September 2013, boasts of utilizing the latest in innovative technology for its applications will be the site for a special gala and pitch session for San Diego Startup week.  This brand new modern accommodation is the perfect backdrop in showcasing San Diego’s finest minds and brightest stars in business and is a great networking opportunity as well a chance to explore the new library if you haven’t done so yet.

This generation knows it's chic to be geek-even for ladies in the startup scene,  Geek Girl Tech Con is one networking alliance group  that will be holding an event that is open to all, men and women alike. During San Diego Startup Week on June 21st  at 12 noon those in attendance will embark on a daylong conference devoted to empowering and enabling successes for women in the tech field. This is an all inclusive event with 30 workshops, a “Sharkette Tank Pitch Fest”, a Hackfest, panels, keynote speakers, one-on-one mentoring and you even get lunch and a “swag bag”!

Back in March, Forbes designated San Diego as the number 1 location to launch a startup, pointing out that San Diego already holds the title of "5th best business community in the country". While those of us that live here have already picked up on this "emergence of small enterprise", the pressure to perform now lies with our entrepreneurs. Considering the growing attendance  and demand for events like Startup San Diego holds, such as the upcoming San Diego Startup Week, there is nothing Comic-al about the rise in leading innovators in the cleantech, biotech, defense tech, mobile tech, cross border manufacturing, and online marketplaces.

According to Forbes as well, San Diego's very own Comic Con is the "largest convention of its kind in the world", and while the San Diego Startup scene is still in its relative infancy, its growth potential is vast and international influence even greater-considering San Diego's glowing reputation among professional circles.

Now for some name dropping-the San Diego Startup Team is spearheaded  by the following roster of players; Brant Cooper, author of ‘The Lean Entrepreneur’, Melani Gordon, CEO at  TapHunter, Tim Ryan, Founder of ValuNetwork, Denise Gitsham, Principle at 7 Second Strategies, Eric Otterson, SVP Business Development at Cooley LLP, and Austin Neudecker, a self proclaimed Startup Fanatic.

    Feature image San Diego Library By Nserrano (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.  

Real Office Centers is expanding again and the Honolulu Star Advertiser took note, posting the following piece on their website. Now your start-up plans don't have to squelch your dreams of island living. Aloha!

Chinatown offices to lure startups

By Andrew Gomes | Honolulu Star Advertiser | Originally posted Apr. 22, 2014

Chinatown has attracted its share of hip restaurants, bars and art houses over the last decade. Now the lure of flexible office space and business support might attract startup companies and technology entrepreneurs to the area.

At least, that's the hope of Real Office Centers, a business incubator company based in Santa Mon­ica, Calif.

Real Office Centers, or ROC, is preparing the upper floor of a two-story building at the corner of North Hotel Street and Nuu­anu Avenue for lease to potentially 30 small companies and entrepreneurs needing dedicated, temporary or shared office facilities.

ROC represents a new competitor in Hawaii's market for shared office space — an industry offering a variety of services that include virtual mailing addresses, phone answering and forwarding, conference room rentals and office space for lease on a full- or part-time basis.

Existing operators here include Resource Suites in the Wai­kiki Landmark building, Regus PLC at Waterfront Plaza and the Ala Moana Center for Business by ProWorks Inc. in the Ala Moana Building.

Ron McElroy, ROC's CEO, said his firm tries to mingle its tenants with academic leaders and venture capitalists through hosted events to help facilitate growth.

Examples of events at ROC, which has five locations in Cali­for­nia, include hackathons, business competitions, workshops and parties.

"It's a pretty healthy environment for a small company to be in," he said. "There's nothing like it in Hawaii."

McElroy, whose family is from Molo­kai, said he would like to open a second Hawaii location in Kaka­ako within the emerging Our Kaka­ako neighborhood master-planned by Kame­ha­meha Schools.

In Chinatown, ROC leased a nearly 14,000-square-foot building and is renovating the property with a goal of opening next month.

The second floor, which was once a Legal Aid of Hawaii office, will be used for office facilities. Ground-floor space is under negotiation for lease to a bar, a restaurant and perhaps retail space for an upstairs tenant with storefront needs.

One firm that has signed on as an ROC tenant is mbloom LLC, a Maui-based investment fund providing capital for Hawaii startups. The fund established by Nick Bicanic and Arben Kryeziu raised $5 million from private investors and $5 million from the Hawaii Strategic Development Corp., a state agency, earlier this year.

  •     Posted in:
Expand your mind and expand your earnings. It’s a simple equation, by expanding your mind with free professional education; you are able to expand your earning potential. Think about this for just a moment, there are literally thousands of educational courses on line that are free, some of which even offer legit certifications from accredited Universities, with topics that range in every field, language and level just waiting to teach you whenever, wherever and about whatever you could possibly desire to know, need to know or are just curious about.

Did you think about this for a moment? If so and you’re still wondering how this applies to you, or how this increases/expands your earnings, let’s explore this a bit further.

If you have not yet had a chance to explore MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses) through Open Culture or similar it is just one very popular source for a catalogue of over 800 university courses, many of which provide “Certificates/Statements of Completion”. In subject matters ranging from Economics and Engineering, to Philosophy and Religion both personal and professional education is literally free and a click away, as they say. Of course the general subject areas are broad yet with course titles such as “Technology in a Foreign Language” and “Financial Programming and Policies”, or “Sustainable Energy Innovation” and “Robot Mechanics and Control” there are some very niche and interesting courses offered from all over the globe.  Even learning a new language is something anyone can attempt on their own schedule-did I mention this was free professional education?

Successful entrepreneurs are always adding new tools to their toolbox of skills and knowledge.

Dollars and Sense

In order to thrive in today’s business economy and not just go with the flow of your competition, a company or business owner must always be learning and adapting in order to grow and expand, not just in dollars but “sense”.  Regardless of the level of formal education we bring to the workforce table, truly successful individuals never finish school or stop learning.

Udemy is another source for career and hobby oriented learning, some of the courses are free, many are priced reasonably, considering the potential return in satisfaction or income. For example the course “The $400K Crowdfunding Launch Formula” is regularly priced at $399. Often Udemy offers specials and coupons for their premium courses such as the crowdfunding class, the coursework is structured so you can do the entire thing in one day (with much caffeine) or just in your “spare” time, and according to commentary and reviews many have exceeded their goals through this program.  Speed reading, photography, coding and programming, app design, and photography are just some of the classes that could be both considered personal and professional in value.

Reinventing education to be accessible to all as a basic human right is the mission of Udacity, another online course host whose programs began with a Stanford University experiment.  Most of the courses are free, have certificates of completion, and are rated as ‘Beginner’, ‘Intermediate’, and ‘Advanced’ skill levels on various professional subjects, such as “How to Build a Startup” by The Lean LaunchPad or “Software Debugging”  and “Applied Cryptography” Science of Secrets.

Furthering your education for most has always been deterred by lack of money and/or time, even availability of a specific class-but now with these various open access classes to university quality education, done at your own pace, for a fraction of the unit cost, the biggest challenge becomes finding which one to start with.

Working out keeps your body in shape and on the top of your game, don’t forget that your brain is also a muscle that needs exercise!   Feature image By Genppy (English: self-made 日本語: アップロード者本人が撮影) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.