Sharon Bui lectures on entrepreneurship

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Sharon Bui lectures on entrepreneurship

Shark Tank alum and digital channel manager Sharon Bui delivered a talk on business strategies on Feb. 11.

Shark Tank alum and digital channel manager Sharon Bui delivered a talk on business strategies on Feb. 11.

Katilynn Swanson (‘21) | Chips Bureau

Shark Tank alum and digital channel manager Sharon Bui delivered a talk on business strategies on Feb. 11.

Katilynn Swanson (‘21) | Chips Bureau

Katilynn Swanson (‘21) | Chips Bureau

Shark Tank alum and digital channel manager Sharon Bui delivered a talk on business strategies on Feb. 11.

Katilynn Swanson, Staff Writer

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The business and economics departments hosted a talk by entrepreneur and digital manager Sharon Bui on Feb. 11. Bui has been featured on ABC’s Shark Tank.

The talk was  open for students and the public to attend and comprised of Bui’s experiences with starting her own business in college in 2014 and then being employed in the  corporate world.

During the presentation, Bui summarized what led to her becoming an entrepreneur and creating the sorority clothing line Frills. Bui encouraged aspiring entrepreneurs with a variety of interests to pursue their dreams.

“It’s okay to have and wear multiple hats, and to have different passions,” Bui said. “Your life is going to be a crazy ride, so sometimes you just have to go with what life throws at you and keep your chin up and a smile on.”

After selling her company, Frills, in 2016 Bui entered the corporate sector and continued to advise those who might some day do the same. She advocates for working hard in order to navigate the evolving job market.

“[Do] not stop pounding the pavement,” Bui said. “Pounding the pavement is like saying scratching and clawing to get where you want to go. Working really freaking hard, all blood sweat and tears, that’s pounding the pavement.”

Emma Schlabach (‘19), a student enrolled in the  entrepreneurship course, added that, despite not being an entrepreneur herself, Bui’s advice still applied.

“I think those skills that you have to have as an entrepreneur are just like heightened skills of how you need to be in the work world,” Schlabach said. “She really stressed that, you know, first impressions matter, and that you kinda have to just go out of your way to do things people wouldn’t expect or even if you think you’re not going to get an answer kinda thing.”

Professor of Management Tim Schweizer (‘80) who organized the talk, invited Bui to speak at his Monday night entrepreneurship class.

“I think it’s important for them to see that everybody’s path is different,” Schweizer said. “They’re all going to relate to different speakers.”

“It’s okay to have and wear multiple hats, and to have different passions. Your life is going to be a crazy ride, so sometimes you just have to go with what life throws at you and keep your chin up and a smile on.”  

– Sharon  Bui

He also believes speakers such as Bui play a key role in opening students to a larger picture.

“Part of it is just to see the connections that made by the students,” Schweizer said. “[Students] start to see how important and useful connections and networks are. They just tell their story, and that is what is so interesting: everyone’s story is just so different.”

Decorah community member, Mollika Tahsin who attended, found comfort in knowing that someone else took risks to make their dream a possibility.

“Just knowing that there’s someone out there who has gone through those experiences and is surviving, and not only surviving but surviving very well, I think that creates some hope,” Tahsin said.

“[Be]cause you’re alone in a journey and [you] oftentimes have no way of knowing how this journey is going to work out.”

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