From the Blog

A Conversation with Joshua Conran on His 40 Under 40 Award

We are excited to announce that Deksia’s very own Senior Partner, Joshua Conran​, is being honored as one of 2018’s 40 Under 40 by the Grand Rapids Business Journal.

Each year since 2002, the awards recognize 40 young professionals making a difference in West Michigan through business success, entrepreneurial leadership, and community service.

In honor of this achievement, we sat down with Joshua himself to discuss the entrepreneurial spirit.

1. What are your goals for after 40?

After 40, I’m hoping to continue the growth of my ventures. But I’d also like to consciously take more time for family and pick up hobbies I’ve neglected for the past 20 years.  

 

2. What’s the biggest challenge for entrepreneurs in today’s economic climate?

The economy is doing pretty well and opportunity is everywhere. The most challenging thing is finding people. Unemployment is low and talent is scarce or expensive, making it difficult for entrepreneurs to grow. Even if they have the sales, they may not have the people to deliver.

 

3. What are some ways for young entrepreneurs to engage and support their communities?

Find something you believe in and get involved with leadership. Being a member with some charitable organization is great. But the real change happens when you grow into the leadership of that organization and expand your influence to positively influence the thing you care about.

 

4. What’s a mistake you’ve learned a lot from?

You can’t be the best at everything in your company, so don’t even try. If you are the best at everything, you need to hire better.

 

5. How has Deksia shaped your entrepreneurial career?

Deksia has actually allowed me to focus in a funny way. I have always kept myself busy with a lot of projects. With Deksia I get to work with dozens of other business owners on their projects. So even though I’m busy with a lot of different things, I’m always focused on Deksia’s WHY: helping small businesses succeed.     

 

6. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

My high school aptitude test said I should be a garbage man — so I bought a couple of garbage companies in the past few years!

 

7. What advice would you give to a young entrepreneur?

Seek the advice of others you respect and trust. Build a plan, work it, measure it, and adjust as needed. This sounds basic, but all too often, entrepreneurs get caught up in the vision without connecting the dots from A to Z.

 

The Grand Rapids Business Journal will recognize Joshua at the 40 Under 40 event on Wednesday, October 17th. For ticket information and event details, visit the event page.