Navy Spouse Shares Advice on Building a Global Company
An active duty Navy spouse herself, Jennifer Pilcher knows firsthand what’s important to our military men and women and their families. That’s why she founded and leads MilitaryOneClick (MOC), a premier online resource for active duty military, reservists, veterans, and their families.
Her company reaches over 2 million people a month in 70 countries. She recently expanded that reach by joining Secor Group, a global moving firm that helps relocate Vets. As president of the merged company, SECOR-MOC, LLC, Pilcher keeps her MOC brand and leverages Secor’s global resources and full scale operation capable of reaching millions of people daily.
At the beginning, Pilcher knew she needed advice on how to start a business and succeed as an entrepreneur so she connected with the Women Veteran Entrepreneur Corps (WVEC). “The help I received from the WVEC program was incredible—I often referred to it as a mini-MBA course. I had no formal business degree—my background is a Master of Arts in Speech-Language Pathology—and I worked for years in various settings across the country where we were stationed. The WVEC program brought me together with women of similar background and experiences and we all shared the same goal—to build successful businesses. We spent a lot of time getting to know each other and I believe the camaraderie of the group and the connections made through WVEC are truly unique,” Pilcher explained.
“After our WVEC course ended, a group of us in the D.C. area who also work in the government space continued meeting on a regular monthly basis to create a WVEC Government Contracting Group to share best practices, leads and teaming opportunities. WVEC provided the foundation on which my company incurred massive growth during and after the program ended. I still always have these WVEC ‘sisters’ to call on.”
Thinking of starting your own business?
Learn from someone who’s been there. Pilcher shares five of the key lessons she learned while building a successful business:
- Go for it—you just need to jump in and start. Begin building your team one person at a time as soon as you can. I run a world-wide remote military spouse team and it all started with just one. Your team is the most important part of your company—find and hire the best and keep them happy. Everything else will work out.
- It's a constant roller coaster ride. So many ups and downs, good days and bad days—so make sure you have a peer mentor—a "WVEC" sister or someone you can call who understands what running a company is like—someone who is in the trenches too and just "gets it!"
- Keep great records. I hired our CFO as soon as I could because I knew this was not my strength—but still a necessity. Know your numbers and hire the right person to run them.
- Turn off the phone and the computer. I struggled with this one the most—and still do. It's a constant battle but I need to give my family as much one-on-one time as I give my clients and team, if not more.