Approximately 70 students, parents and teachers from Burbank High School stayed after school on Friday, December 8, for the first in a series of TILE talks held in the school library. The event featured Chad Billmyer, CEO of Panjo, an online marketplace for hobbyists and market enthusiasts, and was presented by the Burbank High chapter of TILE (Talks in Innovation, Leadership and Entrepreneurship.)
TILE Content Coordinator Vivian Vasquez interviewed Billmyer for the first part of the program. They talked about topics such as: “How can innovation, leadership and entrepreneurship be used as a force for positive change?” and “How do you create a good team culture?”
“The most important part of any company is the team,” said Billmyer.
“He also said that in any company endeavor, we should be like ‘cockroaches’ and ‘stick through to survive through the low-lows’ even if it means facing obstacles and laying low under the ‘kitchen counter’ for the time being,” added Vasquez.
After the interview portion of the event, a Q & A session was held.
In response to one student’s question of “How do you crush your competitors?”, Billmyer responded, “It is not about crushing your competitors. It is about finding ways to consistently differentiate yourself from your competitors.”
TILE “is an organization with the goal of making conversations with innovators, leaders and entrepreneurs accessible to everyone,” said Vasquez. “The typical student from Portland, Burbank or Belgrade has no way to engage in live conversations with their idols.”
“They have no way to hear their stories, ask burning questions, understand their perspective and learn from their experiences. These conversations are often too expensive, too selective and simply unsuitable for youth.”
“What TILE does is give every student access to free, live, participatory, conversations with the luminaries they look up to,” she added. “Working with passionate students around the world, we organize free conversation series that brings together notable guests for monthly, hour long conversations. Part of every event is dedicated to discussing ethical and thoughtful decision making.”
The Burbank Entrepreneurs Club at Burbank High School started the TILE chapter in October 2017 and is entirely student-run. In addition to Vasquez as the Content Coordinator, Jonah Goldman is the Marketing Coordinator and Pawee Akharachotmongkhol is the Logistics Coordinator.
“Each of the coordinators lead a team of three students who make the events possible through a process of reaching out to entrepreneurs and CEOs in the greater Los Angeles area, marketing events to local news sources and on social media, and making sure that the event runs smoothly by communicating with network of supporters, volunteers, speakers, and attendees,” explained Vasquez.
“We started the TILE Burbank Chapter with the vision of spreading youth empowerment and an entrepreneurial spirit to high-schoolers in Burbank,” she also said. “Entrepreneurship is topic that is rarely covered in Burbank high-schools despite it being one of the main proprietors of innovation and human advancement. Our TILE Chapter wants to change that.”
The BHS TILE chapter is planning more one-hour-long TILE talks for the remainder of the 2017-18 school year, featuring executives from McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams and Snapchat.