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By Earl Gregorich

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first article in our new column, Mansplaining, which debuted in our Fall 2021 issue. We invited one brave fellow to share his thoughts on the back page of each issue of The F-Suite.

“So, how does a man end up writing a column in a female-centric publication promoting entrepreneurship among women?”

That was the question I was asked with a chuckle from a business acquaintance. I knew the immediate answer, but it got me to thinking. It’s more than a “who-you-know” story. I was recruited for this column because of the history I share with the editor and other contributors and business owners featured in the issues preceding me. We’re all infected with the same disease! We suffer from entrepreneurialism … and fortunately, there is no cure.

I don’t know exactly how old I was when it was discovered that I was afflicted with this bug. But I have an early memory of me cruising the neighborhood seeking unsuspecting clients in one of those steel pedal cars. I sold “injury insurance” to kids in the neighborhood. They coughed up loose change and I would provide a Band-Aid and a few cents any time they came to me with a “claim,” which was proven by showing me their skinned elbows or knees. What can I say? My dad was in insurance and I was a quick study.

It turned out to be a lousy business model because 6-year-old kids fall off bikes and skateboards and generally do crazy things all the time. I quickly ran out of bandages and money, but I was hooked. From those early beginnings as a grade-school insurance agent (an independent agent, I might add!) to a small business owner three times over, I proudly stand in good company with those who work on or are featured in The F-Suite.

My career has given me many experiences and varied knowledge of a wide array of businesses, from technology management to retail and wholesale, and even e-commerce. I’ve worked for the government, in the private sector, for a utility company and in a family-owned operation. But my favorite position has always been entrepreneur.

I hope my stories and observations (and even the occasional rant) will be helpful and entertaining. I’m looking forward to being “that guy” who weighs in from the male perspective. It’s humbling to be given the opportunity to have the last word ­– something no guy is used to. I always try to consider other viewpoints before adding my two cents. I offer F-Suite readers my appreciation for taking the time to read my opinions and viewpoints, and I hope you find them more valuable than a couple pennies. And I look forward to reading your comments and questions, so plan to participate. I’ll do my best to keep you engaged. Even if I am just one man’s voice in a female-centric magazine.

Send your comments and questions to: [email protected].