Chaos Theory: Inside the Mind of an Entrepreneur
Rogers, Franci, Baylor Business Review
IMANY WAYS. BEN LAMM WAS A TYPICAL I BAYLOR STUDENT. THE FINANCE AND ACCOUNTING MAJOR (WITH A CONCENTRATION IN PERFORMANCE IMPROVEMENT TECHNOLOGY) ENJOYED SPENDING TIME WITH HIS FRIENDS. HE JOINED A FRATERNITY AND PARTICIPATED IN EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES. HE STUDIED. GOT TO KNOW HIS PROFESSORS AND WENT ON A SUMMER INTERNSHIP. BUT, UNLIKE MOST BAYLOR STUDENTS. LAMM RETURNED FROM HIS INTERNSHIP AS AN ENTREPRENEUR.
"I was able to create training courses at a higher quality and a faster pace than their current San Francisco-bay contractor," Lamm said of the California biotech company where he interned. "When I left, they awarded me a pretty large contract to continue this work.
AT THAT POINT, I HAD TO START A BUSINESS."
So, while still a student, Lamm started Simply Interactive, an interactive marketing and e-learning services company that would be his first business venture. He partnered with now retired business professor James Moshinskie (most often referred to as "Dr. Mo"), to create the company, which retained the biotech company as a long-term client and added many more, including Fortune 100 companies, along the way.
"Obviously, I learned a lot from Dr. Mo," Lamm said, "but I learned a lot from all my professors. They were supportive of what I was doing, and they continued to challenge me in other areas of my business education."
But for someone like Lamm, the most important thing about the business school was the way he was being taught."
The focus of my course work was mostly project-based," he said. "Anyone can take a test, but not everyone can build and deliver a project. It teaches students how to work with a team and be competitive at the same time."
Those project-building skills and competitive spirit, Lamm said, have helped him to understand how to make his businesses more successful.
"In addition to skills, I also learned how to be creative," he said. "Professors at Baylor didn't just give us anything for free. They would give us some knowledge and expect us to go use it, expand on it. It was an interesting opportunity to help us to apply what we learned."
Lamm turned those creative projects and his newly created business into a major success, even before graduation.
"My senior year at Baylor, I went to seven [job] interviews, thinking I would work in private banking or private consulting for a few years and then go out on my own," Lamm said. "But I think deep down I knew I would never make it working for someone else."
Simply Interactive was already doing better than he had imagined, and the profits were higher than all of the offers he received from places he had interviewed.
He eventually sold Simply Interactive and has now turned his full attention to his newest venture: Chaotic Moon Studios in Austin, Texas.
Along with Dr. Mo and two other partners, Mike Erwin and William Hurley, Lamm created the mobile application development company, where he serves as chief executive officer.
Chaotic Moon Studios has an impressive and growing list of clients, including the Discovery Channel, Groupon, Microsoft, Hello Kitty, HTC and Sesame Street. Most recently, they launched the first-ever, fully digital, tablet-only, daily publication designed specifically for the iPad, called The Daily, for News Corporation.
"It's a very interesting company," Lamm said. "We offer several core services, including custom application development, mobile strategy and content publishing that can work for any client from a startup company to a Fortune 100 company."
In addition to creating and developing a company's mobile presence in the marketplace, Chaotic Moon Studios also specializes in helping companies that have previously attempted marketing their own applications and been unsuccessful, through a process they call Application Resurrection. …