October 2018
Letter from the Executive Director
If I had a realistic job description, it would include:
  • Ensure that the paychecks never bounce; 
  • Bring home the QEDC display tablecloth to wash after events; and 
  • Remind staff to put plastics and paper in the correct recycling bins.

In addition to these tasks, I teach a few classes -- it keeps me out in the world and connected to clients. Each month, I teach New Ideas to New Ventures, our introduction class for those thinking of going the entrepreneurship route. I tell participants: "Tonight we're going to discuss a few commonsense things to think about before anyone spends a cent." I talk about the need to be a self-starter, the importance of being disciplined and organized, the challenge of making decisions rapidly, and most importantly, integrity and honesty.

I always quote a line attributed to Mark Twain: "If you tell the truth you don't have to remember anything." Because as we all know -- sometimes after finding out the hard way -- that lying takes more effort than telling the truth. Inevitably, we get lost and confused and go down the low road. But being human, we sometimes stray from the path. Maybe we do it out of ignorance; maybe to be expeditious; or maybe not to hurt someone's feelings. I note that the only acceptable fib is responding to the question "Does this make me look heavy?" with an emphatic "No, of course not!"

When it comes to starting a business, it's crucial to be brutally honest with yourself and your clients. Common lapses are misstating facts, promising something that can't be delivered, and false representation. If this happens early on in a business venture, you can basically kiss it good bye. Dishonesty leads directly to the loss of integrity. Despite our high tech -- or maybe because of it with so much social networking -- news spreads fast. The predilection to let the world know that we have been the victim of a lie spreads even faster.

Unfortunately, we're living in an era when some of the great and mighty spew forth falsehoods on a regular basis. They become models of leadership to those who are ignorant and unquestioning. It's easy to follow their lead and go down the low road, but eventually these models and their minions will fall into their own muck and be forever stuck. In business and in life, oftentimes it's more difficult to ascend uphill. But that's the only direction to go if you want to be successful.

You never get lost when you take the high road.


Seth Bornstein
Executive Director
News You Can Use
More than 150 local residents -- representing about 70 countries -- gathered at the Unisphere for a photo by Jonathan Kane on June 9. Entitled "A Great Day in Queens," the image shows the borough's diversity, unity, and tolerance. It also pays homage to Jonathan's father, Art Kane, who took a world famous photo of 57 jazz legends in front of a Harlem brownstone 60 years ago. Jonathan recently gave a signed copy of a "Great Day" poster to Borough President Melinda Katz. The Queens Tourism Council is selling the poster for $10 each ($20 with shipping). Click here to order a copy. In photo are (l-to-r) QEDC Deputy Director Ricardi Calixte, QTC Director Rob MacKay, Kane, Katz, QEDC Marketing and Communications Manager Erika Campoverde, QEDC Executive Director Seth Bornstein, and Peter Mendez from Mendez Printing .
When the Pilotworks food incubator in Brooklyn closed suddenly last week, QEDC's Entrepreneur Space and six other local incubators united to assist the displaced businesses. All affected companies and other foodpreneurs can click here for a form to find a new home. The E-Space's Kathrine Gregory and New York Small Scale Food Processors Association have been in contact with licensing agencies to alleviate fees and fines that they might accrue due to being displaced from their original licensed facility .
Business Forum Breakfast
Queens College hosts Beyond Millennials: Advertising in the Age of New Media at the Student Union Ballroom on Friday, Nov. 9, at 8 am. Four industry leaders -- from AMC Networks, Hulu, Leadership Consulting, and the college faculty -- will participate in the panel discussion moderated by NBC Universal's Alan Wurtzel.
Queens Borough Hall
120-55 Queens Blvd., Ste. 309 Kew Gardens, NY 11424
718-263-0546   |   www.queensny.org
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