Daymond John, also known as “the People’s Shark” from his time at the hit show ‘Shark Tank” is sharing his time and talent with the Heroes to CEOs contest for veteran entrepreneurs hosted by Bob Evans Farms. This will be the third time John has joined the contest.

John is an admired business owner and investor who knows what it takes to succeed in business from his time as the founder and CEO of FUBU, a hip hop clothing company.

The Heroes to CEOs competition is open to veteran entrepreneurs only. Three finalists will meet John for some mentoring in New York. The grand prize winner will receive a business grant worth $30,000 and additional coaching sessions with John.

Last year’s winner, U.S. Air Force veteran Charlynda Scales, used the grant money to increase production of “Mutt’s Sauce,” the all-purpose, tomato-based sauce from the recipe of her grandfather, Charlie “Mutt” Ferrell, Jr.

Veterans’ unique set of challenges

John knows that veterans have much to offer but many are hesitant to reveal their background.

Some people think that veterans have “some baggage that is not beneficial to the relationship,” John said.

Another difficulty for veterans is overcoming their “other’s first” mindset which make them forget to prioritize their own needs. They have to adjust to the mindset that an entrepreneur needs to place themselves and their business first.

Veterans’ distinctive strengths

John noted that veterans bring with them a number of factors that make them ideal entrepreneurs and business owners such as their wide network of other veterans and expertise in completing tasks on time.

John also mentioned that veterans have experience in taking inventory of a situation and making tough decisions to overcome obstacles. John added that veterans are also team players.

Tips are for any budding entrepreneurs

John said that his business-related  guidance for veterans is also applicable to any business owner. He advises entrepreneurs  to draw from their innate resources as well as other people’s resources – whether manpower, manufacturing or marketing.

U.S. military veteran entrepreneurs who are interested in joining the Heroes to CEOs contest should submit a video about their business idea and plans from February 18 up to March 20.

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