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22: Why Young Entrepreneurs Should Be Asking Themselves These Questions - with Matthew Bordy
Episode 2218th January 2023 • a BROADcast for Manufacturers • Keystone Click
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Meet Matthew:

He’s a serial entrepreneur and product development professional. He use to manage the design team for Office Max and all their private labels. Now, he has owned his own product development firm called Prototype since 2013. He’s headquartered in Fort Lauderdale. He runs a one-of-a-kind development firm that supports inventors, entrepreneurs, and large brands with designing prototyping engineering, and manufacturing. His mission is to make ideas into reality.

Kris: Where did the mission to make ideas into reality come from?


Matthew: So it really started when I was a child, and I wasn't sure which direction I would go into, but I was an entrepreneur as a kid selling bubble gum out of my walker and always coming up with ideas, and I always wanted to bring ideas to life. So I always was wondering, where can I do that? And a lot of my professors go into business school, and then I found a career in product design and industrial design, and it really comes back to I think everybody had this where they're like, oh, they see a product on TV or they're in Walmart and they look at something, they said, oh, I thought of that. I thought of that product idea. And so what's amazing about what we do here at Prototype House and other industrial designers is we help entrepreneurs and people take that AHA moment and bring it to life. So that is our mission to create really great experiences for people while they're using those products. So it could be a medical device, it could be a new toy for kids, but it's really bringing that AHA moment to life.


Erin: What is your company tinkering with right now?


Matthew: So currently we're tinkering with some new dermatology tools and aesthetic tools, which is pretty exciting for me. I love the medical space just because it's always evolving, and I listen to a lot of Ted Talks and things in the medical space. But I have some products here. You can't see them, but some are larger brands, and some are from just entrepreneurs. So here's a cool product. It's called Zippy Cap. It's made here in the US. And what's cool about it is it's a keychain straw. So you always have a straw with you, and it works with any water bottle. So you just pop it open, uncap your water bottle, and drop the straw in and you're ready to go. And you twist it. And then you have a straw and you can go ahead and drink. And it's a local entrepreneur. He is based in New York. And what's amazing is he found us online and was able to develop his invention from just a napkin sketch all the way to production while we were here in Florida. And we never met in person, but he's now on the market and he really wanted to manufacture here in the US. And we're able to make that happen for him. So it's amazing.


Lori: Where are your clients usually getting these things manufactured?


Matthew: So this is a really tough question because most of our clients, would love to manufacture here in the US. And I was in DC recently talking to our lawmakers and different people in Congress to try to figure out if can we bring more manufacturing on a smaller scale for our entrepreneurs and startups. And right now it's really not possible, to be honest with you. For most of our products, it's very difficult. So most of our manufacturing happens overseas or a mixture of both. So we've been doing some hybrid models where we get our tooling done in China. And then we can get our injection molding done here and then packaging gets imported somewhere else and we do some packaging and assembly, but for the most part, it's still overseas based on cost and labor. And also the big interesting thing is there is a lot of injection molding shops all over our country. They're amazing, but they turn down small production runs because a lot of our entrepreneurs when they first get started can't commit to 25,000 pieces or 10,000 pieces. They maybe want to do 2500 to get started and get it rolling. And that's not enough for some of the shops here in the US.



And so much more… 


Connect with Matthew


Connect on LinkedIn!



Connect with the broads!


Connect with Erin on LinkedIn and visit http://www.earthlinginteractive.com for web-based solutions to your complex business problems!


Connect with Lori on LinkedIn and visit www.keystoneclick.com for your strategic digital marketing needs!  


Connect with Kris on LinkedIn and visit www.genalpha.com for OEM and aftermarket digital solutions!

Transcripts

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Lori Highby, Kris Harrington, and Erin Courtney.

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Three broads bringing you stories and strategies exploring manufacturing topics

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that challenge the status quo while laying the foundations for future success.

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Together with special guests, they'll

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celebrate what's is working and unpack what is not.

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So you can learn, grow, and succeed.

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You want to learn more about your host?

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Make sure to listen to episode one.

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All right, ladies.

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So this past year, I probably did more travel than I have ever done,

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I don't know, a big time period, but I've been going everywhere, and I love it.

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And I'm wondering,

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what do you like to do that's considered, like, super touristy when you travel?

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That's a good one.

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Super touristy.

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Oh, I know.

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I totally have this.

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Okay, what is it?

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I love those double decker open air buses.

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I just love it.

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They're so fun. You learn.

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You have such a good view, and I notice

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that people don't do them because they think they're too touristy, but it's such

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a great way to get kind of the lay of the land when you're in a new place.

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I highly recommend those. Yeah.

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Awesome. I agree with that one.

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That wasn't the first thing that came to mind.

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Wasn't that.

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But I will agree with you, Erin, that I have always enjoyed the double decker bus.

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And there's something that you learn about

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the city that you wouldn't get anywhere else.

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Yeah, they're great, but the first thing.

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That comes to mind for me is food.

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I'm going to check the restaurants in the

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area that are most popular that people mention, and I'm probably going to miss

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the hole in the wall ones that are the real good ones.

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That only if you're there with people who live there.

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They're going to show you those.

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But I'm going to go to the restaurants and eat the food that is recommended online.

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So I'm google searching.

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So mine is actually combining both of yours and what I do,

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eating on a double decker bus.

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I know, but I look for a food city tour.

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I did that many years ago in Seattle, and it was the best thing I did.

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You got to do it at the start of wherever

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you are, because then you learn the city, you learn about some of the history.

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You get to see some cool spots that you wouldn't normally go to, and then you

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learn about some restaurants that you probably wouldn't have seen before.

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Yeah, I love it.

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A great idea, actually.

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I'm going to do that next time.

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All right, well, let's get started.

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We have Matthew Bordy here today.

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Hi, Matthew. Hey, guys.

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How are you?

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I'm excited to be on, and pleasure to meet all three of you.

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Totally. Yeah.

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Great.

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Let me tell you a little about Matthew Bordy.

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In fact, he's new for all of us, so I would say all of us are meeting you for

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the first time today, and it's going to be a great conversation.

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So you're a serial entrepreneur, right.

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And you're a product development professional,

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which I think is really interesting, especially for our manufacturing friends.

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I understand you worked with a Fortune.

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Was it a 500 company in the design department prior?

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Yeah, Fortune 500. So it was Office Depot.

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Office Max and I managed their design team and all their private labels.

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Oh, that's great. Yeah.

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I was wondering which company I wanted. To keep that secret.

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You don't have an NVA.

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Okay.

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So today you own your own product

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development firm, and the name of that is Prototype.

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You've been that since 2013, and you've

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got a bunch of products around you that we can see, our audience can't see.

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Hopefully, we'll get some information about those products during the show, and

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we'll help describe as best we can to our audience that are listening.

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You're headquartered in Fort Lauderdale.

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You're a one of a kind development firm

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that supports inventors, entrepreneurs, and large brands with

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designing prototyping engineering and manufacturing.

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Your mission is to make ideas into reality.

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I love that.

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Any secret sauce or information on where

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that mission came from that you'd like to share with us?

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I know there's an interruption of a recording, but

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I actually did not hear you for a split second, so can you repeat the question?

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Sure.

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It says that here that your Prototype

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House's mission is to make ideas into reality, and that's pretty special.

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So I was just wondering where that came from.

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So

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it really started when I was a child, and I wasn't sure which direction I would go

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into, but I was an entrepreneur as a kid selling bubble gum out of my walker and

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always coming up with ideas, and I always wanted to bring ideas to life.

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So I always was wondering, where can I do that?

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And a lot of my professors go into

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business school, and then I found a career in product design and industrial design,

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and it really comes back to I think everybody had this where they're

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like, oh, they see a product on TV or they're in Walmart and they look at

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something, they said, oh, I thought of that.

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I thought of that product idea.

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And so what's amazing about what we do

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here at Prototype House and other industrial designers is we help

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entrepreneurs and people take that AHA moment and bring it to life.

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So that is our mission and create really

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great experiences for people while they're using those products.

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So it could be a medical device, it could

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be a new toy for kids, but it's really bringing that AHA moment to life.

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That is so cool.

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What I love about it is we're all kind of in the digital sphere, all three of us.

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Our businesses are really focused on

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digital, and we all know how many amazing things come from that.

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But the idea that you're building tangible things, it's almost like it feels like

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magic after spending all my time in the digital world.

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You make real things that people can touch.

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What kind of products do you kind of gave us some categories.

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Tell us about what you're tinkering with right now.

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Sure. So currently we're tinkering with some new

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dermatology tools and aesthetic tools, which is pretty exciting for me.

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I love the medical space just because it's always evolving, and

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I listen to a lot of Ted Talks and things in the medical space.

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But I have some products here.

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You can't see them, but some are some

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larger brands, some are from just entrepreneurs.

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So here's a cool product. It's called Zippy Cap.

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Again, what's it called?

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It's called Zippy Cap. Zippy cap.

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Okay. Yeah.

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And I'll send you a link so if anybody wants to check them out.

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It's made here in the US.

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And what's cool about it is it's a keychain straw.

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So you always have a straw with you, and it works with any water bottle.

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So you just pop it open,

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uncap your water bottle, and drop the straw in and you're ready to go.

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And you twist it.

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And then you have a straw and you can go ahead and drink.

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Oh, that's cool.

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And it's a local entrepreneur.

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He is based in New York.

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And what's amazing is he found us online and was able to develop his invention from

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just a napkin sketch all the way to production while we were here in Florida.

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And we never met in person, but he's now

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on the market and he really wanted to manufacture here in the US.

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And we're able to make that happen for him.

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So it's amazing. That's awesome.

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Here's another product.

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This is perfect for the holidays.

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This is a local entrepreneur, and they

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were just mentioned on a few different news channels, including CNBC.

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But I have three kids, so we have the Elf on the shelf.

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So this is the adult version, the Jerk at Work.

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Plus. I love this.

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He's really awesome.

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And he does lots of pranks across the office.

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And it gives you a book of pranks that you

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can play on your coworkers, and they're a lot of fun.

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But this is a completely different category of product because we're dealing

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with cutting so manufacturers, as well as injection molding for the head and

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creating this cool character and experience that's fun and playful.

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So it's very different.

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Like, you could see him here.

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He's having like.

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Can'T see it. This guy everybody needs.

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I love the pranks, and I'll send.

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You links to them all.

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Here's a cool product that we did actually many years ago.

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Now they're on version two.

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It's called the HyperChiller.

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And what it is, is it takes hot coffee.

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You can put this under a Craig, for example, and your hot coffee goes in and

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you leave it in for 1 minute, and then cold coffee comes out.

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So it's undiluted.

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Cold coffee, yeah.

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And what was amazing was we sponsored his

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business plan competition at FAU and he ended up launching on Amazon and

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Kickstarter became a number one seller on Amazon.

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I think he has 14,005 star reviews now.

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And he ended up selling the brand to a larger company.

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So this was a really cool, success and fun product.

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And this was injection molding and few other methods, but really cool products.

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And beyond that, we also have designed

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products for like Husky and Workforce and Home Depot sometimes.

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We did a one off project with Red Bull before, which is a lot of fun.

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And what else do we have?

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Here's? A really cool product.

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This is in all the west marines here in South Florida.

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And this is a lobster net.

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So this is a patented lobster net that actually folds, so when you're under the

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water, you can catch those pesky little bugs.

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It's a folding net for those.

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That's a folding net? Yeah.

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So when you're diving down, one of the

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hard part, if you've ever dive for lobster is you usually have to hold the tickle

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stick and the net in two different hands and swim.

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So with this, there's a magnet and it holds your tickle stick on top of that,

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your net can close, so you catch all your bugs and they won't swim away.

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So this is sold online? Yeah.

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It's so cool.

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Like, first of all, learning about all

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these awesome products that you're coming up with and making, and second of all,

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learning about all these problems that I didn't even know about.

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I didn't know about

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lobster harvesting issue, and I love the coffee cooling idea.

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You're in the realm of solving problems.

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That's so neat.

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I think you're going to have to come up

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with an idea and get it over to Matthew to help us implement.

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There's lots of problems that need to be solved in this world.

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You can just think of one, right?

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It only takes one.

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And I love seeing our client success because a lot of these are that I'm

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showing you are just single entrepreneurs or small startups.

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They're not all these large brands and they get out there.

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They're in big retailers.

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We've had clients on HSN QVC and it's a lot of fun.

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It's a lot of fun to work along with them.

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So, Matthew, where are your clients usually getting these things manufactured?

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So this is a really tough question

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because for the most of our clients, they would love to manufacture here in the US.

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And I was in DC recently talking to our

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lawmakers and different people in Congress to try to figure out can we bring more

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manufacturing on a smaller scale for our entrepreneurs and startups?

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And right now it's really not possible, to be honest with you.

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For most of our products, it's very difficult.

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So most of our manufacturing happens overseas or a mixture of both.

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So we've been doing some hybrid models where we get our tooling done in china.

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And then we can get our injection molding done here and then packaging gets imported

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somewhere else and we do some packaging and assembly, but for the most

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part, it's still overseas based on cost and labor.

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And also the big interesting thing is there's a lot of

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injection molding shops all over our country.

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They're amazing, but they turn down small production runs

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because a lot of our entrepreneurs, when they first get started, for example, jerk

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at work, they can't commit to 25,000 pieces or 10,000 pieces.

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They maybe want to do 2500 to get started and get it rolling.

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And that's not enough for some of the shops here in the US.

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Sure. Can I throw a quick question at you about

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is advanced manufacturing changing that at all?

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Like with 3D printing and some of the other technologies that are

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becoming available for some of these more small scale manufacturing?

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Has that intersected with the work that you're doing at all yet?

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So it definitely has on the medical field because you can have these innovations

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where, like for a total pit or knee replacement, some of those parts that they

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use today in surgery are 3D printed and specific to the individual.

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Also in dentistry, they're 3D printing a

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lot of different implants, which is amazing.

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And I feel like in the future, as there's

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more automation involved in the assembly and

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manufacturing, we will be bringing more manufacturing back to the US.

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Because they'll bring the cost down because of labor and things like that.

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So I see the advancement in technology making a huge impact on that.

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But as of right now, we're not seeing that to a point that's making a big shift yet.

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Sure. But you can see it on the horizon.

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Absolutely.

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That's the future for sure. Yeah.

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I'm curious too, Matthew.

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So you talked a little bit about

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where they complete some of these new products that they've developed.

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But what are some of the other obstacles,

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or maybe the largest obstacle that companies face?

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Or a young entrepreneur, an innovator who wants to develop a product?

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What are the challenges they face in getting started?

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I really appreciate you asking that because I think a lot of entrepreneurs and

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startups, they don't realize how hard it is to develop a simple product

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and the funding that they need to really get it across the finish line.

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A lot of clients, they think it's just a pipe dream, but if you just think of like

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one simple product like this, you go through a lot of different iterations.

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And for plastic parts, it's usually one big barrier is the molding cost.

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Your molds are very expensive, so you have to prepare for that and then

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having a good business case and understanding who your customer is.

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So that's one of the questions I usually

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ask as the entrepreneur comes into our office, is, well, who's your customer?

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How much are they going to pay for that?

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And sometimes they don't even think about that.

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They just are so in love with their idea.

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They are holding it like a baby and they want it to grow.

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But some of those meaningful questions they need to ask to see if it's worth

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proceeding with or not, and it's okay if you don't move forward with it.

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There's always another idea around the corner.

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But some of those bigger questions on funding.

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Who is your customer?

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Have you done a patent search yet?

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Because there's a lot of patents out there

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floating around with product that's not on the market.

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So we've had unfortunate times where a client really wants to develop something,

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but there's already a patent out there, so they can't do it.

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You're going to be risking some litigation down the road.

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So those are some high level barriers that I think people

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overlook before they start developing a product.

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And is that one of your roles and one of your services to sort of help people

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navigate that and to look at all of those things?

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Or do you generally anticipate they will

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have done that pre work before they come to work with you?

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I would anticipate I would love if they

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did most of that beforehand, but it's usually that they don't know.

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So it's a lot of education.

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And that is why we have a client guide and packet information packet.

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So as a new client, you get a bunch of

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information and we ask those open ended questions during a discovery call.

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So we're not only educating them, but we also understand how serious they are.

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We have some clients that are really well prepared.

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They have customer personas, and they have

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all their research and they're ready to go.

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And then it's much different because I feel like that would be a success.

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Otherwise, we give advice, and I feel

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like, why don't you wait on development, do a patent search first.

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Let's see what comes back.

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Let's see if we can even produce this at a cost that would be reasonable.

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And if I don't think so, I'll be the first to say that.

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And I won't validate anybody's idea.

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So if I don't, that's one of our rules here at Prototype House.

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You have to believe in the product.

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We don't need to we'll develop it for you because I don't think that's fair, because

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as a service provider, if I say, oh, it's an amazing product,

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it may be because I just want to work with you, but that's not the case.

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So we will give you advice on those

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fundamental barriers to make it a success, but we won't validate anything for you.

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Yeah, Mark, that's great.

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One of the things that I forgot to mention about you is that you're a mentor at FAU

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Tech Runway, and you actually just mentioned FAU a minute ago.

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Is there anything else that is interesting

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about you that you want to share with our audience that people might not.

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Know well, I love mentoring, and I've actually done a

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workshop at Northeast High School here in Fort Lauderdale.

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I did a master class at Levan Center.

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And those are just free classes, part of their accelerating programs.

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And if you're an entrepreneur listening, go to your local universities.

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There must be an accelerator startup incubator that you can get involved with

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and get advice and learn from each other, and you get a team.

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And there's so much behind the power of a

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team, so I highly recommend checking that out.

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But I'm an avid coffee roaster, and I love coffee.

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My dream is to open up a coffee shop and I order different green beans from different

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areas and roast, and we put together a commercial espresso machine at the office.

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And coffee is like my world.

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It keeps me energized.

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Mine, too.

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I'm going to have to visit you if I'm ever

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in Fort Lauderdale and we'll share a cup of coffee, for sure.

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Absolutely. You're welcome anytime.

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And if it's a hot day, you just put it through that little there you go.

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Absolutely. Tie it all together.

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Perfect.

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Well, thank you, Matthew.

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It's so interesting to hear what you're

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working on, how you're helping entrepreneurs and other people in business

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who want to expand their product line and introduce a new idea.

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I think it's just awesome.

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So thanks for being with us.

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I think this is a great time to move into our next segment.

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So we're not going to let you go yet.

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We need to hear from everybody what they just learned.

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Laurie, I'll start with you.

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What did he just recently learn?

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Yeah, I just learned that

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I love finding research and data and really cool things like this.

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So I'm tying it into the social media world.

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I don't know if you're familiar with the name Richard Vanderblum, but he does this

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annual report on the LinkedIn algorithm, and it was published about a month ago,

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but I finally got some time to dig into it.

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He audits over 10,000 posts to look at what's working and what's not working in

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regards to LinkedIn, and I'll just share a couple of nuggets,

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but this report is 57 pages long, and it's got some fascinating findings on it.

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I'm working for this one. I work for this one.

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Yeah. But as far as the things that kind of

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stand out, the biggest I see a lot of people say, like, link in comments.

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First off, you don't want to be the first person to comment on your post.

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And if you are, you want to wait at least 20 minutes.

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You want to respond to comments within the

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first hour to keep your posts moving forward in the thread.

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You should comment or engage with at least three other people's posts.

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When you do post something of your own as

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well, it's just going to show that you're an active LinkedIn user.

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And those comments, comments that have

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twelve words or more, actually spike your post up.

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So if you are kind of sharing, commenting with other people, you want to be

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intentional and not just saying, Nice post, or, that's interesting, but actually

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putting some depth behind that information.

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And when you're uploading documents you want

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seven slides is pretty good for getting some engagement on your post.

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Videos should be in square format and, like, 20 to 60 seconds.

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That's it. I've got so much more to share with that.

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Leave you hanging right there.

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I'll include the link.

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57 pages of nuggets. Serious?

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Yeah, I saw the little infographic that you put up and then I was immediately

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like, oh, gosh, I better make some adjustments.

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I'm going to look for it.

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Aaron, you're up.

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Yeah, well, everybody's probably configured this out by now.

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I've been sick.

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Like, crazy sick, so that's all I can think about.

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And what I learned was that you can

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actually I did not know that you can get a test for the flu.

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We're also used to COVID testing now that they have gone

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full bore, and you can get all your little ailments tested now if you want to, but

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when I asked the doctor, what is even the point?

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And she said that just if you know what

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you have, then you can be careful with the right people.

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And we're just getting a lot better at

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these communicable diseases and how we manage them.

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Another little silver lining from COVID We

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got to look for those when we can find them.

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That's what I where did you get the flu test?

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It was at the urgent care.

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I don't think they have the home test yet,

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but I think the entire world is about to like, hey, maybe that's

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something you guys could say matter home test.

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How about you, Chris?

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What do you learn?

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Well, I just learned similar to Lori.

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Somebody sent me a recent study, actually,

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it's a friend of mine, Victoria Busby from Colonial Life.

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She just shared a study with me, and I

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think this is something we're going to want to dive into deeper.

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So I'm only going to touch a little bit

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because I'd love to bring somebody in to be on the show to touch on this more.

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But

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the study is between Colonial Life and the Manufacturing Institute, and its title is

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closing the Gender Gap and Recruiting and Retaining Women in Manufacturing.

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Oh, that's a new release.

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Yeah, just in November.

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But one of the things I learned so one of

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their key findings was that let me just find it here.

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So as it stands, women make up more than

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29% of the manufacturing workforce, and I think we've talked about that a bit.

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By raising the percentage of women in the

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manufacturing sector to 35% of total employment in the sector, there could be

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800,000 more female manufacturing employees, and this would be enough to

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fill almost every open job in the manufacturing sector today.

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Wow. When we talk about all the open

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manufacturing jobs, and there's the war on talent, and you're trying to find and

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recruit, if we would just get to 35%, that would fill all of those roles.

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So I thought that was incredibly interesting.

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And the report goes on to talk about what

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manufacturers are doing to help close the gender gap.

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So it is based on a survey that they did just in June and July of this year with

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190 responses from various people in different manufacturer sectors.

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So really interesting report.

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It's 28 pages long, so not quite 52 pages too long.

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And I also found out that so I I went to the Manufacturing Institute because they

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have a new initiative that is called Women Make America, and it's a 35 x 30 campaign.

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So their goal is to help increase the

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women's percentage of the manufacturing workforce to 35% by 2030.

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It would be really cool to have somebody

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on the show who could speak to the survey and about this campaign.

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So I'll be working on that. More to come.

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Awesome. Love it.

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All right, Matthew, can you finish the sentence?

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I just learned that well, I just.

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Learned that in about six months soon, neurolink will be implanting their

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first implant in a human for a human trial.

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And if you have about 2 hours of time, I highly recommend that you watch their show

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and tell on YouTube that they just released.

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And I know they're getting a lot of backlash right now, but the technology and

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the processes that they're using for manufacturing these devices is pretty

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outstanding and very innovative and exciting.

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And they share a lot of information on

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their manufacturing practices in the YouTube and the show intel.

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They have their lead engineers.

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They would be a great asset for the show to speak on that a little bit.

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But what they're doing at Neuralink, I think, will help so many Americans that

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are disabled, that can't walk, that can't see, and without no spoiler alert.

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But it's a very small device, and they

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have all of these threads that get implanted in different areas of the brain,

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and they show us how they can, like a chimpanzee can control it and

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actually play pong on a computer screen just by thinking Where that pong is going.

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And I really believe in their technology.

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They've taken it from they're going to change healthcare in that regard soon.

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I think there will be a lot of news coming out on Neuralink in this upcoming years.

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I'm pretty excited about it.

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So if you have 2 hours of time, highly recommend that you sit down and watch it.

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All right, thank you for that.

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That's one of those things that I see

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scrolling in the headlines and I don't really dive into.

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So it's good to know that there's a

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resource where I can get some deeper information

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just right alongside AI and all these other innovations that are coming on.

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So much more quickly, I think, that we would have even anticipated, I say even

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six months ago, then we really need to pay attention.

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So thank you for flagging that for us.

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Absolutely.

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And I had never heard of them, so it hasn't even come up for me.

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So that's great. I'll check it out.

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But, Matthew, thank you so much for being here.

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It's been great to have you on the show.

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If people want to get in touch with you

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after listening to this, where should they go to find you?

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I would love if you add me on LinkedIn or you can go to our website,

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prototypehouse.com. You could also follow us on Instagram.

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If you'd like to email me.

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I'm always open for an email or drop by the office for coffee.

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My email is Matthewboardy at Prototype

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House.com. And feel free to call us or drop in.

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And I would love to answer any questions.

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And I really appreciate the three of you for having me on the show.

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It was really great pleasure.

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Thank you for being here.

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Thank you so much. Thank you.

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I'll include all of the links, send all

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the links to me, and I'll get them in the show notes for everyone to have access to.

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Perfect. Awesome.

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I appreciate that, Laurie.

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All right, thanks, guys.

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See you next time. This was great.

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Thanks, everyone.

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Bye.

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This wraps up today's broadcast.

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If you're looking to shake up the status

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quo at your organization or just want to connect with these broads, visit

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