Mike Longo: Nantucket Valet
We started the first officially licensed valet parking service on Nantucket Island in the summer of 2011. After completing the business plan and projections using many of the methods I learned in Middlebury Entrepreneurs, we were still faced with the task of convincing the town council to approve our service. It took a lot of work, but they eventually granted us the opportunity to provide valet parking to downtown Nantucket.
It was a rough start, as almost no one had heard of us (the lack of notice meant we could do very little advertising), but the service soon picked up steam and we had a great end to the summer. The most valuable thing that I am continually learning from Nantucket Valet is how to deal with different types of people. From municipal politics to wealthy retirees, we deal with a wide range of individuals who all have different motivations and priorities. It is essential to our business that we learn how to work best with these different types of people.
Last year, we provided valet parking for downtown Nantucket, however, this year, we pivoted to focus solely on private parties. This aspect of the business is both more lucrative and a more enjoyable way to offer valet parking to the island of Nantucket. I am grateful to have taken Middlebury Entrepreneurs because it taught me to set up a plan, but more importantly, how to adapt he skills that he learned there that helped with the business.
Midd Entrepreneurs gave me the tools to write the entire business plan. This plan was essential in convincing the Board of Selectmen to approve our project for the summer. They were very impressed with the sophistication of our business plan given that we were only college kids and I could not have done this without the skills I learned in Midd Entrepreneurs. The public speaking training that I received in the class also helped in my presentation to the town council on Nantucket.