“If you can make this print a name tag, MassChallenge would pay to use it for our 1,400 person awards dinner in October” said Cory Bolotsky on a cool fall night this past September. I had recently debuted Sign in App (now Attendware) to the NU Entrepreneurs Club to track attendance and get real-time data on how members are engaging with the organization. At the time, the prototype had nothing to do with name tags. “Here, I even drew up how the admin panel could work if we tracked attendance like this” Cory jumped in and pulled up two mock ups in Photoshop on his laptop. I respond, “Cory this is amazing, thank you so much for putting it together. I don’t really know how to make it print a name tag, but I’ll give it a shot.”
Cory saw the potential in the early version of Attendware and pushed me to grow it. Where I initially saw a side project, Cory saw a business. It was his encouragement and support that took Attendware to our first paying customer. Over the past few years, Cory and I have become great mentors to each other. He joined the NU Entrepreneurs Club as a freshman and got involved in the Husky Startup Challenge (I was the Director at the time). The following year, Cory took over my role as Director when I went on to lead the organization as President. Then I recruited him to join the Student Fellowship at .406 Ventures, where time and again he has demonstrated leadership.
Entrepreneurs need people like Cory to get them across hurdles. People like Cory are an entrepreneur’s cheering section, sounding board and sometimes even become early customers or investors. Cory is a great mentor because he provides tangible feedback and ideas (with mockups!) and is willing to eat his own dog food (use the product for himself and be a real test case). I’m honored to have Cory as a key part of the Attendware story and I know we’ll go on to make him proud.