The HaneyBiz Project

A Moment with Mark Haney

Question: What’s the inspiration behind your program?


Mark: I'm on a mission to ignite an entrepreneurial revolution right here in our hometown of Sacramento. I believe that entrepreneurs are the heroes of American capitalism. When you talk to my son a little bit earlier he is a Purple Heart, he inspires me to do what I can do. I built a few small businesses along the way so it's like what can I do to help my hometown of Sacramento. So that's what the show is all about. 


Question: When people are looking at starting a business, what advice would you have for them? 

Mark: The first thing is start with something that is a big dream and I think a lot of people have these little things that might be interesting but they're not that excited about it. So I would say, 

if it's not keeping you up at night- if you're taking notes about it in every waking moment, that maybe you're not ready quite ready to start. The other thing I would say is, if you're not in that stage yet, the perfect place to come is someplace like here in the Golden One Center, we're at the global impact venture summit, this is a great place to socialize your ideas, see if anything sticks and who knows you might meet a great business partner. 


Question: How how important is a network when you're starting out a company? 


Mark: A network is all about a team, so in my mind, nobody can build a company alone of any significance. So I think starting off for me it's been the right business partner. I've been the chief dreaming officer of my endeavor, so I always want to have somebody alongside me who knows the product really well. I need somebody who's created all the finances and then I'm a pretty good sales guy, so I'll bring the sales and marketing to the effort. So I think you have to have the right team, the network beyond the business that will come in time. 


Question: What's the format of the HaneyBiz Project Radio Show? 


Mark: Each show is a little bit different. We recorded a show today with Mike Teal, he is the owner of Raley's/Nob Hill/Bel Air. He's one of the most successful guys in the Sacramento area. We told his story- it was very revealing. He shared the real world story of trying to turn around this enormous grocery store chain. It was revealing because nobody goes through life undefeated so a lot of times we'll connect to the most successful people. [One week] I'll share the story of Dale Carlsen of Sleep-Train which is now the Mattress Firm. He built that company, so these real success stories are inspirational in a way. Another week I may share the story of a startup who's trying to get funding and maybe a second guest might be a venture capitalist and we'll talk to him about what it's like to go pitch your idea and all the things that are stressful in that world. It's really all over the board but the idea is to hopefully have on each show have somebody in the audience take away something that advances them and their dream. 


Question: If person comes to you and says, 'I'd like to start a business, is this a good time?' 


Mark: It depends. I think right now in Sacramento it's a great time to launch a business but I think every entrepreneur is it a different stage in life. If you are one of those people that is obsessed with something and you just can't turn it off, it probably is a good time for you. And I think you could start it anywhere in the world, but this is my hometown and I like the idea of building around my family, building around my friends and building around my hometown of Sacramento. So yes, in many cases, this is the time! 

Check out The HaneyBiz Project Radio Show on Talk 650 Saturday Mornings at 9:00am in the Sacramento Area

Edited for Concision and Clarity

Copyright © Greenstein, Rogoff, Olsen & Co. (GROCO)