In order to better get-to-know our members, we thought it was best we shared who we are are and how we came to Entrepreneurs Geelong.
Find out a little bit more about one of our board members Christine McCure below.
What was your first experience with Entrepreneurs Geelong?
I attended the Bennett Merriman breakfast in November and was instantly impressed with the quality of the event. I have been to so many networking events over the years all across the country and none of them have provided as much value as I found this event to.
And how did you hear about it?
The wonderful Stephanie Beitzel, CEO of Technology Geelong introduced me to Matthew Fletcher and the rest is history.
What’s been your favourite memory of an EG event?
So far I have enjoyed it all. Everyone is really friendly and supportive. Both Bennett Merriman and Shane Young have been really enjoyable and insightful guests to have.
Why did you decide to join the board?
I have been in business for 11 years now and I find myself often meeting people at the very beginning of their business journey. I joined the board because I wanted to be able to give support to those driven enough to take the jump from being an employee to an entrepreneur. It’s a wild ride but a very rewarding one.
Tell us a little bit about your business.
I founded BKM Print in 2006. BKM Print specialises in the highest quality printing and cutting edge graphic design at affordable prices. Over the years I have developed an online print ordering system that is ideal for multiple-outlet businesses. It includes the ability to edit artwork online and send to print within custom branded storefronts. Over the years I have worked with national franchised brands including Shingle Inn Cafés (55 stores), Salts of the Earth (25 stores), Stellarossa (30 stores), Blow Dry Bar (8 stores), Coffee Club, Jim’s Bookkeeping & Coles Myer’s chain of hospitality venues.
What’s your mantra as an entrepreneur?
Early to bed, early to rise, work like hell and advertise – Ted Turner (Founder of CNN).
I’ve lived by this mantra for years.
What’s your biggest piece of advice for new entrepreneurs?
Never say no!
Some of the best opportunities I have had over the years have been from saying yes to jobs that aren’t so straightforward. I think many entrepreneurs get offered work but decline it as it seems like it isn’t directly what they do day-to-day so it seems too hard. Often those opportunities expand your business offering and in turn increase your revenue.
When was the moment you felt most challenged as a small business and how did you overcome it?
I think the early days of business are often the most challenging because you don’t know what will happen next. Often there is a lack of solid confidence and it is easy to be rattled. I started my business and then the GFC hit and many businesses that were similar to mine could not remain solvent. I was nervous but determined not to have that same fate and sought large contracts to ensure my longevity. It worked!
Times of expansion or relocation are also hard. I moved from Brisbane to Melbourne four years ago and it was tricky as I had to ensure enough systems were in place in Brisbane so I could remotely manage staff and contractors from Melbourne. I had to take a big step back, look at the business as though it wasn’t mine and brutally make changes. Whilst this was one of the hardest things I have had to do whilst being in business it is one that I am grateful happened as my entire business model changed for the better.
Who are three fellow Geelong small businesses you’d like to shout out?
Elf Squad is a completely voluntary organisation that I am a part of this year. We are collecting donated toys, treats and tech to donate to 109 families in need this Christmas. Donating trees are located at Creative Geelong. Please please please donate 😊
Uncle Donut….. need I say more. These guys have brought the most delicious donuts to Geelong and I can’t get enough of them. The ultimate meeting snack. It is safe to say if I have a meeting with you – I’m bringing Uncle Donut with me.
Salts of the Earth at Newtown – thanks for keeping us well over the winter! If you haven’t tried salt therapy yet – make sure you do!
Read about our other board members here.