Kyle LaFond, American Provenance
IB’s Professional of the Week is the premier way to meet Dane County’s professionals. This week features Kyle LaFond, founder, American Provenance.
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What are the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your job and why?
Managing growth and the challenges of scaling up are daunting tasks. We’re very fortunate to be a high-growth company, but navigating the nuances of growing while staying true to our mission is increasingly difficult.
I am extremely grateful to be working with talented colleagues who share my values and vision for our company. I love having co-workers and customers who are passionate about what we do and how we do it.
Who do you look up to or admire in business and why?
I really look up to my Michelle Somes-Booher. She is the director of the Small Business Development Center at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Michelle has been absolutely instrumental in helping me start and grow my business.
I also look up to anyone who is willing to take a chance and start his or her own business. I’m motivated every day by what I see from other innovators.
What has been the high point of your career so far?
The high point of my career has been launching my own business while working with people I admire and respect. I’ve been very fortunate to work with people from all walks of life who readily contribute their talents, experiences, and insight to our team.
Thinking back on your career, what advice would you give your 21-year-old self?
Think it. Communicate it. Do it. Any successful venture really comes down to two simple things: vision and leadership. You need to know where you want to go and how to convince others to follow you.