Jon M. Huntsman School of Business

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Friday, January 24, 2014

Jeff Clark the Risk-taker, Challenger, Motivator

By Klydi Heywood

As I listened intently to a remarkable man who grew his companies into the billions, I inferred three facts: this man believes in himself, his wife and the people around him.

One of the themes Jeff Clark centered around at the Entrepreneurial Lecture Series on Wednesday night was the principle that we all come to a “changing of the guards” moment in our lives that can alter everything.

Eventually, “you’re able look back and start to realize everything you have done to this point is preparing you for that next period,” Mr. Clark said.

Another valuable theme Mr. Clark taught was the importance of treating your employees well.

“If your greatest asset rides an elevator, invest in it heavily,” Mr. Clark said. He wanted to build a positive culture within his company where he could grow his business purely by having his satisfied clients refer their partners and competitors to his firm.

“We won because as we looked around, we had really happy employees,” Mr. Clark said. “Competitors were trying to figure out how we could get so much done, by so few people.”

He invested in his employees concerns and interests and “made them feel like business owners.”

The final lesson Mr. Clark taught was that of confidence. He attributed much of his young confidence to working hard and doing what he knew was right, always.

“One thing I learned while I was not getting what I wanted was that I was still getting experience and I figured out a way to do it better,” he said. “I think that entrepreneurs are actually, more often than not, born out of some degree or some job where they go and have great focus on what they are trying to do and accomplish for their employer, but at the same time have this panoramic vision where they look around and say, ‘Wait a minute. If we do this, that or the other, we could do it better.’”

Jeff Clark presenting in the 2014 ELS

 For more information on upcoming Entrepreneurial Lecture Series speakers visit

By Klydi Heywood

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