Ziad Moukheiber is a successful entrepreneur who is CEO of the Boston Harbor Angels, a group of Angel Investors who came together in 2004 to help promising entrepreneurs get their start. He also founded SilverSword, a successful IT consulting company, acquired by NSK INC, that provides an outstanding customer service experience for their New England area clients. We met Ziad last year when we honored the Boston Harbor Angels at BUILDFest and invited him to join the gala’s Host Committee.
It turns out that sitting in Host Committee meetings isn’t exactly Ziad’s style. He found his true place in the BUILD family when he attended a guest mentoring session and saw the promise in our students. Ziad realized that he wanted a deeper relationship with BUILD’s young entrepreneurs – something that couldn’t be accomplished in just one session.
He signed up to mentor one of our ninth grade teams at the Community Academy of Science and Health in Dorchester. He meets with his team of 7 students once a week at their school. His job is to help them launch and run a successful micro-business. His team is “Emerge Kit” and their product is an affordable roadside emergency kit for stranded drivers.
Ziad said that mentoring is as beneficial to him as it is to his students. He thinks that every entrepreneur could benefit from mentoring a BUILD team. Mentoring is satisfying because it gives you a chance to teach and inspire young people who may not have strong role models. “It’s not easy,” he admits, “but it’s worth it.”
For Ziad, the biggest challenge of mentoring isn’t turning a group of 14 year-olds into young entrepreneurs. “The biggest challenge of mentoring is earning their respect,” says Ziad. He added that mentoring isn’t just about sharing your expertise, it’s about building a relationship with your students. “We’re failing them, as adults, if we don’t take the time to get to know them.”
Do you want to join Ziad in his life-changing work as a BUILD mentor? We’re already recruiting mentors for the 2017-2018 school year. Learn more here.