Most entrepreneurs dread hearing a ‘no’ or a negative comment for their business ideas. If you too, like a majority of mankind, do not like to hear a ‘no’, read on to know what Mr. Mazzaro, has to say about his business, his beliefs, philosophies, and, success mantra.
Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business.
Lighthouse Graphics is a family business with a big corporate feel. The aim of our business is to help you get your name, logo or event out there in the public eye through various promotional items like business cards, customized corporate stationery like mouse pads and key boards, custom trophies and many more. All our printing is done on eco-friendly recycled paper and soy/vegetable based inks is used for printing. We take orders from all over the country and we are proud to say that most of our business comes from referrals. We also frame budget-based marketing ideas for small businesses.
Kindly give us a brief description about yourself.
Hi, I am Lorenzo Mazzaro. When I was 6, my family moved to Florida from Belgium, to live the American dream. They started with a restaurant serving Belgium waffles and later on started providing butter sculptures to upscale hotels across the country. I started helping in the family business when I was 12 years old. At 19, I moved back to Belgium for 5 years to discover my family roots and heritage. At 24, I was back in the US and helping the family business. After years of working in the family business, I realized that I wanted to start my own business and came up with Lighthouse Graphics.
What ignited the spark in you to start a new business venture?
For our family business, we found it difficult to find a company that had everything we needed to promote ourselves and also provide great customer service. To fulfill this need we started Lighthouse Graphics.
What three pieces of advice would you give to college students who want to become entrepreneurs?
My advice to college students who want to become entrepreneurs would be : Find a business you love, make customer service your number one priority and stick with it.
What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?
According to me, the skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur are – drive, discipline and motivation.
How long do you stick with an idea before giving up?
I believe that you should never give up on an idea if you truly believe in it. I say this considering the example of KFC Colonel Sanders. He was refused 1,009 times before he heard his first ‘yes.’ Yet, he did not give up on his idea. I think most people wouldn’t get past 20 No’s. Sometimes, this is what it takes to succeed.
How many hours do you work a week on an average?
On an average, I work 60 hours a week.
How has being an entrepreneur affected your family life?
Being an entrepreneur has allowed me to spend more time with my family and also given me more control over the quality of time spent.
What motivates you?
I am motivated with the thought of making our business successful.
How do you generate new ideas?
I talk to and listen to my customers. Most of my ideas are outcomes of conversations with my customers.
How do you define success?
For me success implies – good health, a happy family and financial freedom.
What is the best way to achieve long-term success?
The best way to achieve long-term success is to have a business plan and be prepared to make adjustments, if needed
How do you build a successful customer base?
Our customer base is built by our great products at great prices, and, providing the best customer service, every time.
Which book has inspired you the most?
The National Book Award winning work of maritime history by Nathaniel Philbrick, In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whale ship Essex.
What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
My most favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur is the freedom and sense of control it affords me.
To whom do you most attribute your success?
I attribute my success to Julie, my business partner and wife.
What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
Seeing our hard work pay off has been the most satisfying moment in our business.
What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?
I feel entrepreneurs are more willing to take chances while those who work for others are more conservative in their approach.
How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
Word of mouth or referrals has been the most successful form of marketing for my business. I also communicate a lot, on a one-to-one personal basis, with my potential customers.
In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur.
What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
I am an outdoors person. In my free time, I prefer to go hiking and camping with my family.
Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?
I admire search engine giant Google, a lot.
Where do you see yourself and your business in 10 years? 20 years?
In 10 years, I see my business having hundreds of happy employees and providing services to millions of satisfied customers.
If you could talk to one person from history, who would it be and why?
I would like to meet Colonel Sanders of KFC. His story of never giving up is inspiring.