Connecting With Budding Entrepreneurs at TMU Networking Social

Connecting with the Bright Minds of Aspiring Entrepreneurs at TMU

This past November, Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU), a higher learning institution renowned as an innovation-driven university, celebrated Global Entrepreneurship Week from Nov. 13 to Nov. 17.

In addition to the myriad of events put on, including the launch of a video game created by a member of the university’s Transmedia Zone (TZ), an insightful panel discussion on transforming your passion project into a tangible business, and a rigorous pitch competition, MAKO Design + Invent’s President, Kevin Mako, served as the special guest for a Networking Social at the DMZ Sandbox.

On Nov. 16, Mako joined TMU students, educators, and administrators in the Sheldon and Tracy Levy Student Learning Centre to share the wealth of insight he has accumulated while growing MAKO Design + Invent into the flourishing product development firm it is today.

Kevin Mako speaking at TMU's GEW Networking Social on his experiences as an established entrepreneur.
Kevin Mako speaking at TMU’s GEW Networking Social on his experiences as an established entrepreneur.

Having established his company over 20 years ago, he understands the position that today’s aspiring entrepreneurs are in extensively, as well as the impact of connecting and exchanging ideas with someone who has achieved resounding success in their entrepreneurial efforts – especially in such a niche field.

Start Driving Your Startup Forward Today

Although some institutions strive to reinforce the belief that following a linear path that starts with getting a quality education and leads toward establishing a business is the optimal way to develop into an industry-leading professional, Mako encourages students to pour time and effort into their startup ideas while completing their education.

Lending credence to this notion is the fact that he diligently built the foundation of MAKO Design + Invent as a high school student. The company was officially incorporated during his university studies, and he is not the first entrepreneur to take this route.

Kevin Mako serving as the special guest for TMU's GEW Networking Social event put on for staff and young entrepreneurs.
Kevin Mako served as the special guest for TMU’s GEW Networking Social event put on for staff and young entrepreneurs.

A number of prominent industry giants constructed the bare bones of their enterprises while completing their academic studies. The most famous example of this is, of course, Mark Zuckerberg, who started building Facebook in his university dorm room.

Similarly, Matt Mullenweg, the founder of WordPress, created the highly successful content management platform – which we use for writing and publishing our own articles – when he was 19, just like Zuckerberg.

Mullenweg went on to establish Automattic Inc., a holding company with a mission to increase consumers’ accessibility to publishing and e-commerce tools that gifted us numerous open-source platforms, including WooCommerce, Tumblr, and Longreads.

Figuring out the first steps to take with your invention or startup idea can be daunting; however, there are hundreds of resources you can draw on to make the initial leap easier. MAKO offers a free product development guide on our website, for example, based on our years of experience collaborating with inventors that covers the entire product development process.

Ultimately, the most important resources you will need are the self-belief to realize your idea and the urgency to start doing so today.

Core Tenets of Entrepreneurship

Mako also emphasized that one of the most impactful things you can do to maximize your success as a young entrepreneur is to be unwaveringly consistent. Chase your goals with infallible grit!

Have the courage to keep pushing forward and trying to realize your vision regardless of the setbacks that may arise or constraints you may face. There will always be another way forward. You just need to commit to your idea long enough to find it.

Attending events like TMU’s Networking Social and the wide range of inspiring opportunities that the rapidly developing institution puts on for its students and staff during Global Entrepreneurship Week is so important for this very reason. These are fantastic ways to connect with people who are trekking a similar journey, find potential partnerships, and maintain confidence in your entrepreneurial vision.

Students and TMU staff engaging with Kevin Mako following his guest speech
Mako emphasized that one of the most impactful things you can do to maximize your success as a young entrepreneur is to be unwaveringly consistent.

To gather more insight into how to make your invention idea real, the manufacturing process, the latest product design trends, and more, check out our blog! We systematically delve into an array of topics salient to industrial design, prototyping, patenting, and product development.

About: MAKO Design + Invent is the original firm providing world-class consumer product development services tailored to startups, small manufacturers, and inventors. Simply put, we are the leading one-stop-shop for developing your physical product from idea to store shelves, all in a high-quality, cost-effective, and timely manner. We operate as one powerhouse 30-person product design team spread across 4 offices to serve you (Austin, Miami, San Francisco, & Toronto). We have full-stack in-house industrial designmechanical engineeringelectrical engineeringpatent referralprototyping, and manufacturing services. To assist our startup and inventor clients, in addition to above, we help with business strategy, product strategy, marketing, and sales/distribution for all consumer product categories. Also, our founder Kevin Mako hosts The Product Startup Podcast, the industry's leading hardware podcast. Check it out for tips, interviews, and best practices for hardware startups, inventors, and product developers. Click HERE to learn more about MAKO Design + Invent!

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