Peter Gierlach is a young entrepreneur and highly driven person that accepts responsibility for creating his own experiences and opportunities in life. He is a creative person that identifies when something does not exist, or can be improved upon, and he works tirelessly to create it! In high school Peter’s band released an album, he authored and self-published a book, and he created a website where people could find and make a real difference in this world. That is when he launched his company LocallyU, which has the daunting mission of identifying the companies that provide a great product or service, while benefiting community and not destroying the earth. He is going to share his story, what drives him and the difference between average and greatness.
What is the difference between average and greatness?
Peter declares that the difference between average and greatness is the willingness to be vulnerable. Most people settle for average because it does not involve taking risks. It does not involve putting in work, or putting your beliefs out there, and risking failing or being ridiculed for different ideas. You have to understand to achieve greatness you have to do things that could fail. You have to be willing to be vulnerable and accept the potential consequences that come with failure and having new ideas; it’s part of the path to greatness.
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The Struggle is Real:
- Early on their greatest challenge was getting companies to be open to the idea of being sponsored on LocallyU, for FREE! The companies that Peter reached out to where incredibly skeptical at first. “How are these companies not as excited about this as we are?!” was the question he and his team were struggling with. After reflecting on their situation they realized that their vision was skewed because they were operating in a tight network of like-minded people, and dealing with a market that had not seen anything like LocallyU.
Celebrate the Victories:
- One of the victories that Peter shares is how well received his idea and company have been supported by Binghamton University. BU is a best-in-class establishment with supporting entrepreneurs and start-ups. They provided a tremendous suite of resources from mock interviews, to connection to investors, networking opportunities, and access to mentors.
If I knew Then:
- Peter has learned that early on his team casted two wide of a net. Like most entrepreneurs they pitched to anyone and everyone because they didn’t clearly understand their target market. The issue he identified with doing this is that he didn’t spend enough dedicated time with the people that were the ideal market. For any entrepreneur there is an ideal person that will have the greatest impact on their organization, and it is critical to identify them and spend your time focusing on them.
That ONE Thing:
- If you are going to achieve your objective you have to learn to take a large task and break it down into smaller, more manageable, tasks. He learned this himself when his objective was to contact all restaurants in Manhattan. When he googled restaurants in Manhattan, he was overwhelmed by all of the little red dots that popped up! He then broke the region into manageable territories and assigned deadlines for each. He was able to work through this, while keeping morale up and reinforcing positive behaviors.
- Website: LocallyU
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org