Barbara Corcoran's Favorite 'Shark Tank' Entrepreneurs Share The Most Important Lesson She's Taught Them
A fundamental aspect of growing a profitable business is carrying yourself in a way that convinces others you are worth their time and money.
The brother-and-sister duo, Jeff and Jen Martin, finalized a deal with Corcoran last November for a $200,000 investment in exchange for 10% equity and a 10% draw from their salaries.
Last year, Pipsnacks pulled in just under $800,000 in revenue, and Jeff tells Business Insider that in 2015 the company's sales could increase as much as eight- or nine-fold.
In a short time since closing the deal, Corcoran has become a mentor to the Martins and has connected them with a contact who could bring Pipsnacks' gourmet popcorn into big-box stores across the US. The biggest thing they've learned from Corcoran, however, is that before you can make it big, you need to believe you're worthy of doing so.
Pipsnacks is the first business that Jeff, 29, and Jen, 26, have started, and they initially felt like "it was hard to be taken seriously in an industry that is run by a couple giants," Jeff says.
Corcoran realized early in her career that her belief in herself was paramount, especially as a woman.
Jeff says that when Corcoran enters a room to discuss a business deal, "you know that she can do it and has done it and will do it," referring to the tangible and reassuring self-confidence she has in her abilities and company.
Corcoran also gains the respect and attention of her audience by focusing intensely on whoever she's speaking with, giving the impression that they are the most important thing to her that day no matter how busy her schedule is. "She can just switch gears into a meeting with you and within five minutes have six better ideas than any you've ever thought of," Jeff says.
The Martins used to be intimidated walking into a negotiation with a major distributor. "After meeting Barbara, we go into these meetings now, and we can negotiate with the best of 'em. We get what we want," Jeff says.
"And we can kind of flip the script around," he continues. "Where before we'd go in to see what we could do for them, now we're able to demand what could you do for us."
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