First-Call August 2021 Newsletter with NVSBC
The National Veteran Small Business Coalition (NVSBC) is the largest non-profit association in the country representing Veteran Owned and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business. The NVSBC works to make sure that Veteran-Owned Small Businesses are given first consideration for federal prime and subcontract procurement opportunities, as well as nationally recognized training, networking, and advocacy within the federal market to ensure that they are procurement ready.
In the August issue of their "First-Call" Newsletter, Black Box Safety President, Jackson Dalton, speaks with the NVSBC about what it takes to be a Disabled-Veteran Small-Business owner in the federal marketplace.
What motivated you to start your own business?
"While serving in the Marine Corps I was injured in a training accident. I went through 3 leg surgeries, couldn’t walk for a year, and was medically retired from the Marine Corps. From this experience, I made it my mission in life to ensure that others aren’t hurt at work, so that they can continue to do the things they love to do with the people that they love to do those things with. At Black Box Safety, we provide products that save lives and reduce exposure to occupational hazards."
What has been your biggest challenge(s) in the Federal marketplace and how did you overcome them?
"Our biggest challenge is competing against entrenched incumbents that have long-term contract vehicles, established relationships with Federal customers and suppliers, and experienced teams adept at winning and maintaining government contracts. We are overcoming this challenge through a combination of grit, perseverance and the responsible management of our cash flow."
What advice would you give to other veteran business small owners?
- "Take advantage of free resources including the GI Bill or the Dept. of Veterans Affairs Vocational Rehabilitation Ch.31 program, business courses offered through the Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE), your local Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC), Small Business Development Center (SBDC), and finally an often-overlooked resource that proved to be of great value and benefit to me; Shark Tank, YouTube and podcasts such as GovCon Giants."
- "Join an incubator that is composed of veteran business owners. I went through this incubator 3 years ago and I am still close friends with many of the other business owners. Camaraderie is necessary when starting a business and is the number one thing that veterans miss when transitioning out of the military."
- "If you can do so, start your business now. Most can be started out of your home with a phone, a laptop and a lot of determination. As General George S. Patton used to say, “A good plan executed right now, is far better than a perfect plan executed next week”.
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