Daniel Ball-Program Manager at Hub101
What did you do before working at Hub101?
Daniel has been working with entrepreneur programs for years, dedicating his time in the evenings and weekends to working with start-ups. For the past year, he has since left the corporate world to commit full-time to working with young companies. In February of 2016, he joined the Hub101 team after moving to the area, starting a start-up meet-up group in Westlake Village with over 400 current members and working with the university to bring his programs to students.
I worked in a lot of health care companies like Amgen biotechnology here in Thousand Oaks, to Kaiser Permanente and other companies. I developed products for them. As a product manager, I both created products and managed them once we launched them to market. Ultimately, we try to grow the business. I’m able to bring that big company experience to help smaller companies figure out how to formalize their idea and, when they’re ready, how to scale it into a large business.
2. What does a typical day in your shoes look like?
Daniel manages programs at Hub101, including the newest Incubator program for new start-ups. More often than not, he is a team player and helps out where he can and goes where he’s needed.
A typical day for me is balancing being a therapist for entrepreneurs while also helping them figure out how to get customers. I run around and help them solve whatever problem they are having. We have worked with a lot of entrepreneurs here to help them with their pitch deck for investors, how to get customers and how to segment the market. It’s a mix of strategy and tactics. We also do a lot of connections. A lot of what I do is relationship building and finding people who can help them.
3. Could you tell me a bit about the Incubator Program at Hub101?
Daniel has been running programs like the Incubator for the past 4 years. This is the first time he will be spearheading the program in full swing at Hub101.
The Incubator program is a cohort of 10 start-ups that come in and work together for 13 weeks. It is a mentor-driven program which means every day we are bringing in new mentors in a particular field. We cycle their knowledge back into the teams and it culminates over 13 weeks into a Shark Tank-Style Demo Day at the end where they pitch to real inventors.
4. What does Hub101 and its community mean to you?
Hub101 as a space is incredibly vibrant, we’ve grown so much in the past 5 months. We’ve grown from 12 members to 80 members. We’ve had people successful in raising money, and it hasn’t gotten to their head. They still sit down and talk about what worked and what didn’t. They are willing to recycle their energy back into the space. On a personal level, I think it’s important to be part of a community. It can be really welcoming. I mean, we have free coffee but [the people here] don’t come for the coffee, they come for the relationships they’re building. Our events are also bringing in over 100 people, which is exciting. They may be a student, they may be people with a day job, but we get to introduce them into this ecosystem. They may not know what being an entrepreneur is like.
5. What, for you, has been the most exciting development at Hub101?
Personally, the most exciting development in the space is that sense of community. I like working with start-ups and I like seeing them be successful. I think I take the most satisfaction in the relationships that we’re building here. I think what we’re doing is very exciting. It’s a very safe place to experiment being an entrepreneur, to learn, to grow, to execute and to be successful. I’m very excited for the events we have here and the programs we run here, and I can’t wait to see the future of the space.
Our next season kicks off in August 2016! To apply to be a part of our incubator program visit Hub101.LA