Jermaine Carter is an Army Veteran who has a B.S. in Information Systems Management, an M.S. in Project Management and an MBA from the University of Maryland University College (UMUC).
He is the founder and CEO of Maximum Business Potential, a business consulting firm specializing in Quality Management and Business Strategy. The firm’s methodology is based on his experience as a MPEA Sr. Examiner and being a proponent of the U.S. Baldridge Performance Excellence Program.
He is also currently the Business and Economic Chairperson for the National Black MBA Association, DC Chapter and an adjunct teacher at UMUC.
In this interview, Jermaine shares how he wants to help business owners learn fundamental business knowledge to become successful. After absorbing his biggest motivators, goals and key to success - be sure to follow Jermaine on Twitter!
What motivated you to start Maximum Business Potential? Did you see a way to serve customers better than your competitors?I started Maximum Business Potential because I wanted to provide business owners with fundamental business knowledge that sometimes can be difficult to find or expensive to get, especially for minority owners.
I think having a similar understanding of the business environment and background of many of the owners I come across allows me to better understand their perspective and provide them with better service. It’s more of relationship to help each other than a strict business transaction.
How have your motivations changed since you first started Maximum Business Potential? Is there an area that you have grown most?My motivations have not changed. I still want to help as many owners as I can be successful. When they are successful it feels like “our” business was successful and that feels good.
I feel I have grown the most with my networking efforts. I realized I had to get out in the world and meet people to grow as a business and not just for clients but for my own knowledge and growth.
What do you consider the biggest milestone that you have hit with your business? How did you get there?I think the biggest milestone for me was going from an idea of a business to finally starting the business. The biggest hurdles to overcome were all the excesses for not starting.
Who has been your greatest influencer along your entrepreneurial journey? How did they shape Maximum Business Potential?I have been lucky to meet and get words of wisdom from numerous successful business people and entrepreneurs who have listen to my ideas and been willing to give me feedback and advice. Their advice has allowed me to continue to move my brand in a positive direction.
What’s your most unforgettable experience as an entrepreneur?The first time I handed my business card to a CEO of another company. In a weird way it made me feel like we were on the same level, we weren’t, but it felt good.
What’s the biggest thing you struggle with as a business owner? Do you have any advice for how future entrepreneurs can overcome it?No guarantees and you are responsible for everything. Find your “happy place” and visit as needed. There is no easy answer.
Are you using any Apps that help you stay on track every day?Not a big App guy, I still use pen and paper.
How does being an entrepreneur affect your relationships with your friends and family?It only really affects my kids who think going to work only means getting up, getting dressed and going someplace till dinner time. You’re not really working if your home so at some point I can take them to the playground right?
Looking back, what’s one thing you would do differently with Maximum Business Potential? Why would you change it?I would make my mistakes faster to speed up my learning curve for what works and what doesn’t.
What advice would you give to our readers who want to start a business in Washington? Where should they start?Network. Network. Network. Get out and meet people to see what business solutions they are looking for and what business solutions you can provide. Don’t go out and sell your product, build relationships, people buy from who they know and trust and they will become another marketing tool for your brand, YOU!