Collaboration through community: Q&A with young entrepreneur Nic Von Schneider

Nic Von Schneider is a Midland native, turned MIT student, turned serial entrepreneur, who has an intrinsic desire to teach others through his own experiences, failures and success. Driven by purposeful branding, he’s created multiple businesses and workshops to bring the community together in collaboration and working toward individual goals.

Von Schneider is the founder of the branding studio, Glyph Collective, and cofounder of The Ashmont Group, a consulting firm that partners with corporate companies and startups to scale long-term growth by maximizing existing systems.

We caught up with Nic to chat about his mentality, mission and sights for Midland in 2018 and beyond.

Q: What events are you facilitating to inspire entrepreneurship and ideation in the community?

A: Getting entrepreneurs together and throwing ideas around is one of my passion, so I've helped start something called Energize Workspace where we host events every week and they are often free for anyone to join. The goal of these “think tank” environments is to communicate the idea of collaboration and community. The events create an environment that inspires as much peer collaboration as possible, where people genuinely want to help each other.

We aim to provide participants with many different ways of connecting with each other in a way that is both social and helpful. We have social meet-ups that are challenge based, the group is presented with a real problem at a real company and they work together to solve it. This way, they gain insight and perspectives from various thought processes.

The group also hosts “Business Battles” which are meet-ups where the group is split into two separate teams and given ideas to build a company around. We really see some great collaboration going from these activities.

Additionally, we host one workshop per month where various business tools are broken down on topics like branding, Google analytics, sales objectives, etc. We use resources from Google ventures and bring in different leaders from the community to lead them. Often, we will use these combined resources to do what we call a “Startup Sprint” to help people get their ideas off the ground.

I think that positive community makes positive relationships, and all of the events are built off this foundation.

Q: That sounds awesome! How can people get connected to this event?

A: There are multiple ways to connect with us! We have an email list where people can learn what we’re doing and can also sign up for activities. We’re active on LinkedIn and other social media platforms including Facebook and Instagram as well.

Q: For newbie investors and entrepreneurs, where is the best place to get started?

A: Understand the fundamentals of investing first, which are all about watching, learning and making a goal for yourself. Objectively, you have to make a plan for what you want to do, so get connected to a financial advisor. Make your goals measurable and monitor your targets.

One of the most successful habits you can have as an entrepreneur is to always be challenging yourself and seeking to learn new things. When I was running my first startup, I was as much the janitor as I was the sales guy as much as I was willing to code. You’re not just building a product or service but you’re building yourself and that same mentality is true in investing. A lot of newbies forget to educate themselves, but self-growth is huge. I've found it helpful to constantly keep reading and learning.

Q: Interesting! So, Bitcoin. If I'm just starting out, what do I need to know? 

A: It’s very volatile, but I’ve been actively trading for two years. I would suggest it is important for new users to be conscientious of a few things first:

Know the differences between a fiat currency and a digital currency and they fundamentally work differently. The reason that Bitcoin is becoming more valuable is because it’s based on a technology that can be updated, and is actively being improved as time progresses. It is still in its infancy, but you have to be aware that it’s risky.

Get in touch with a financial advisor and if you have money leftover, you might want to try putting it in Bitcoin. More and more companies like Disney and Microsoft are accepting crypto-currency as a form of payment, so my take is the future is likely bright.
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