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Throughout my years as a member, I have exponentially grown my business.

A woman with dark hair wearing an off the shoulder black shirt smiles at the camera

As an entrepreneur, an impressive arsenal of tools at the ready is often the difference between success and failure when you think of how to grow your business. Education, powerful connections and once-in-a-lifetime experiences are all keys to entrepreneurial success. As a founder, owner or CEO, it can feel overwhelming to find each of those experiences individually while also learning how to scale. 

That’s where the Entrepreneurs’ Organization comes in. Throughout my years as a member, I have exponentially grown my business, achieved authority status through educational programs and made lasting friendships with people all over the world. 

Learning & Growth Through Empowering Educational Experiences 

I strongly identify with  EO’s core value  of Thirst for Learning and take advantage of every educational opportunity that comes my way. Successful entrepreneurs know that they will face fierce competition in the market and must stay up-to-date with the latest innovations and ideas to keep their businesses thriving.  

I accomplish this by attending learning events. I feel fortunate to have attended three high-level learning opportunities through EO. Consider these as you think about how to grow your business. 

EO with Harvard Business School

I attended EO with Harvard Business School Executive Education: Inspiring Entrepreneurial Strategy, with 95 other members from around the globe. There, we developed groundbreaking strategies and skills in analyzing industry evolution that helped our businesses grow. At this exclusive EO Executive Education program, we learned directly from Harvard faculty in live discussions, participated in case studies and study groups and attended guest speaking events. Combined, they gave us a competitive advantage in the complex global economy. 

Entrepreneurial Masters Program

I was extremely fortunate to be accepted into EO’s Entrepreneurial Masters Program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), along with 68 fellow members who are the owner, founder, co-founder or controlling shareholder of a company that grosses US$1 million or more annually. The rigorous sessions are held over four days at the MIT Endicott House, located in Dedham, Massachusetts.  

The intense blending of practice and theory is designed to identify and bring together the next generation of entrepreneurial giants—the next Bill Gates or Richard Branson–where you learn how to grow your business. Growing up in Des Moines, Iowa, I never imagined I would be in the same room as the next Bill Gates, let alone be considered as one.  

Global Leadership Conference

The EO Global Leadership Conference (GLC) is a two-day, intensive training conference for EO members who volunteer to be leaders in their chapter or region. The high-caliber leadership content and unique experience of networking with other leaders make GLC one of the top entrepreneurial conferences of the year. I attended in 2021 and the programming and virtual conference experience were top-notch. I gained valuable insights via the content, met new people and also enjoyed being a sponsor of the event. 

Once-in-a-Lifetime Speaker Events 

EO thought leadership speaker events occur at the local chapter level (in person and virtually) as well as regionally and worldwide. The speaker lists are very impressive!  

Among the thought-leaders I’ve seen are Gary Vaynerchuck, Barbara Corcoran, Magic Johnson, Sara Blakely, Chris Do and Seth Godin. As the founder of an event production company, I might briefly encounter such high-caliber celebrities, but rarely would I get the chance to speak with them and ask questions and get valuable responses—as I do through EO learning events. 

EO Members & Experience Shares Provide the Guidance I Need 

Perhaps the most impactful benefit of EO is its members. EO’s brand values summarize the membership experience beautifully: “We are committed to each other’s growth and well-being. We build deep human connections across rooms, cities, countries and continents. Our community is inclusive, and we value diversity. We are from different cultures, religions and backgrounds, but EO binds us together.” 

EO is a non-solicit peer group, but when asked organically, we do business with each other. For example, my company, Entire Productions, has been referred to businesses by EO members, and when appropriate, we also refer business to EO member companies. When you think of how to grow your business, connections are often worth their weight in gold.

When COVID hit, I also hit a professional low point. My multi-million-dollar business came crashing down in a matter of days, and I had to make the gut-wrenching decision to permanently lay off six employees. Through EO, I quickly learned about the US-based Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL). EO members such as Ami Kassar, the CEO of MultiFunding and an expert in small business funding, brought this information to the table based on their experience and expertise.  

The PPP enabled me to keep a small but scrappy team; we dug deep to become the experts on virtual and hybrid events. We ended up doing over 200 virtual events in 2020 and finished the year with US$1M in profit―which is a miracle given the circumstances. 

Through my EO connections, I secured a PPE supply for one of our larger corporate clients via an EO member in New York City and sold surplus PPE to an EO member in Southern California. It was extremely meaningful for me to return the support I received, especially during such a turbulent time. 

Become Primed For How to Grow Your Business

The gym, wine clubs, streaming platforms―these memberships may come and go―but as long as my bio says “entrepreneur,” I will remain a member of Entrepreneurs’ Organization. I’ve made many investments in my 20 years of business, but none have been as impactful as the decision to lean in and commit myself to explore the opportunities and benefits provided by EO. 

With my arsenal of tools supplied by EO, I am ready to take on whatever comes my way. 

Learn how to grow your business from fellow entrepreneurs who’ve been in your shoes

Natasha Miller is founder and Chief Experience Designer of Entire Productions and an EO Los Angeles member. 

This article was originally published in 2021 at  

Allie Frank

Author Allie Frank

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