SCOTT ROUSE • Occupation: PitchFixer
How long have you worked at the Nashville Entrepreneur Center?
3 Years. I’m 3rd in line after Michael #1, and Sam #2, I’m #3. There was 1 guy before me, but he left before we moved to the new EC.
What are your greatest achievements so far at the EC?
#1- Helping people who are shy, reserved and embarrassed easily, realize they the last thing they need to worry about is what someone else thinks about them. My Father always says “What people think of you, is none of your business.”
#2- Helping entrepreneurs get funding for their dream. For me, there’s nothing like seeing and entrepreneur pitch correctly, and and from that moment on, getting the attention and respect they need to get funding.
What challenges do you face working at the EC?
My biggest challenge is expediting the understanding that we are here to help. When I begin training an entrepreneur in body language and creating a pitch, they’re usually under the impression I’m wasting their time. After they realize I can see what specific team member bothers them and what slides they’re unsure about, just by decoding their body language, they come around very quickly. It’s then they come to the understanding the EC is very serious about helping them bring their idea into reality.
What's your workspace like?
I’m lucky. I’ve got Johnathan as my “Roomie” and he’s funny, smart, and knows everything that’s happening anywhere in the building. On my side of our office, everything is fairly organized and clean. However, Johnathan’s side looks like a cross between a high-end computer-tech-photography store and a burnt out Vietnamese village. When I describe it I like to say “It looks like a giant robot geek threw up on a desk.”
What do you listen to while you work?
Nothing. I can’t concentrate if there’s music or talking. I know, I know... But it’s true.
Do you have a favorite to-do list manager?
I have 2. The first one is “Things” by https://culturedcode.com/things/ Cultured Code, and “Todo” by http://www.appigo.com/todo-task-and-to-do-list.html Appigo. I catch everything in Todo, and execute the “NOW” items as they come up. When I need to research a task or to-do,
or gather info and intel on that specific task or to-do, I use Things. It changed my life. It’s like a miniature version of http://www.literatureandlatte.com/scrivener.php Scrivener.
Besides your phone and computer, what gadget can't you live without?
My hand held white board. It a game changer when trying to relate an intricate idea or process properly.
Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert?
I’m more of an introvert. Most people are under the impression I’m an extrovert because of my skill set; pitch training, interrogation training, and body language training. But in reality, if I’m around too many people, and I’m not teaching or training them, I shut down.
What's your daily routine like?
I have 2 very specific types of days, each with its own routine. The 1st type of day goes like this: I arrive at the EC between 5 and 6 a.m. I prepare, grade, and update, the pitch decks and slides of the startups I’m working with. I edit videos of the previous day’s pitches to show to the
startups their body language and how they look and sound when answering questions post pitch rehearsal. I do that until 9:30 - 10:00. After that I have my first meeting of the day with a startup. The rest of the day is spent teaching and training the startups, helping them
decipher all of the information they’ve gathered from their classes and mentor meetings, and then working through the interpersonal team problems they may be experiencing. I leave the EC around 6 or 8 depending on the needs of the startups.
The 2nd type of day goes like this: I get in at 8:00 / 9:00 a.m. I work on decks and video for the online classes until 11. Then I start meetings with our mentors that want me to sit in on their meetings, or meet with members from past or present cohorts and walk them through what their 1st investor meeting will probably be like, or train them in body language so they’ll know what cues to look for in a possible new team member or partnership. Or work with a startup on connecting to someone they need to talk to, or should talk to, or should meet, concerning their business. I leave the EC around 5:00 - 5:30.
What everyday thing are you better at than anyone else?
Understanding what someone is going to do next, and why.
What's the best advice you've ever received?
I have 2 pieces actually. Both from my Father, a doctor for more than 50 years. #1- “Keep in mind, it’s a big old boat, and we’re not driving.”
#2- “God will forgive you for anything... Mother Nature? She forgives nothing.”
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
Every morning in the very early a.m., when it’s still dark outside with just a trace of fog lightly touching the giant, empty, parking lot, I unlock and walk through the front door of the EC. I realize how massive it is. I see how clean, professional, and powerful looking it is, coupled with that awe inspiring silence... that familiar silence like when you’re standing in the middle of an open field, alone in the middle of the night... and I know... its as quiet as it will be all day... And in my heart of hearts, I know, beyond a shadow of any doubt... I will never get used to the “Hey buddy!” from Michael that scares the living shit out of me EVERY time.