Virginia Zuber discusses how her participation in the Small Business Leadership Academy has benefited her business, Diamond Underground Construction Corp.
Small Business Leadership Academy Past Participant:
Diamond Underground Construction Corp.
Tell us about your business: Diamond Underground is a dry utility contractor that specializes in trenchless methods, or directional drilling, to place conduit underground for the purpose of housing wire or cable for power and communications use. The intent of directional drilling is to install the conduit in a less intrusive manner and to leave the majority of the property undisturbed.
Year of participation in SBLA: 2008
What was the most important thing you learned from SBLA? The most important idea that I learned from SBLA is that I am not an island. There are so many of my colleagues that face the same decisions that I do and sharing them with other entrepreneurs was a wonderful outreach. Also, the formal instruction offered at ASU opened my eyes to looking at things differently, to check out how largely successful companies keep their employees loyal, for example. Another benefit was that I was reminded to identify what my bottom line is, my ’walk away’ point, before I walk into a negotiation.
How have you changed the way you do business based on what you learned during SBLA? I would say informally that I have changed the way I do business. I cannot pinpoint one specific topic that is obvious from the class, but I think the way I approach everyday life as an entrepreneur has definitely been positively affected through my involvement with SBLA, the formal instruction, and the continual re-enforcement that I get from the monthly (alumni) meetings.
How has the SBLA alumni community been helpful to you since you went through the program? I look forward to their continuous support and insightfulness. Just recently, I was having a moment, peeling off another layer of struggle that I was experiencing, and just sharing it with the group, and absorbing their feedback was priceless.
What aspects of SBLA do you consider most valuable for other small business owners in Phoenix? Networking with similar businesses has been invaluable. It has allowed us to focus on real problems and come up with solutions to move our business forward. The training we received in class has allowed us to minimize mistakes and maximize our opportunities.
Virginia Zuber is the President of Diamond Underground Construction Corp.
[stextbox id="grey"]The next Small Business Leadership Academy program will begin Wednesday, August 31, 2011.
For more information about the program, including admission requirements, please visit SBLA’s website. [/stextbox]