By: Kathryn Tanner
People often say do what you love and turn that into your career. Joe Hathaway found a way to do just that as a sophomore in high school. He started his own business where people would pay him to play video games for them, so that they could advance to the higher levels and acquire the fun gear. This just goes to show, there’s a market for every business. Joe Hathaway is a 2018 graduate from Rockhurst High School. While in high school he was the entrepreneurship club president, student council treasurer, a member of the lacrosse team, and participated in Most Entrepreneurial Community in America (MECA). When the faculty at Rockhurst saw how much of an interest Joe had in entrepreneurship they decided to create a class for all the entrepreneurial-minded students there.
He is currently in the 2018 Young Entrepreneur Program Kansas City (YEP KC) class for the summer. Joe was first informed about YEP KC from his calculus teacher, who knew about Joe’s interest in entrepreneurship, and thought that Joe could benefit from the program.
YEP KC partnered Joe with C2FO for the summer. C2FO is a startup company located in Kansas City, whose main focus is to generate early payments between buyers and suppliers. He is working in the sales department on the Supplier Relationship Management (SRM) team. He said that at C2FO he felt like an important part of the company, and that he was given real work right from the start. The SRM team also had a new hire starting the same week as Joe. They went through the same training, and were both making calls to potential clients by the end of his first week. He feels honored that as an intern he was given the same work as someone that would be working for the company full time. As a part of SRM, Joe learned how to do sales, and work with other members on his team to break down a big task.
Joe is extremely grateful for the opportunity YEP KC has given him. Through his internship at C2FO Joe has learned things that will stay with him throughout his life. The most important thing that stuck with him was a saying he heard someone from the sales team say:
“build your brand, and build your network because no matter what career field you go into, those two things will always be important”.
Getting to see how all of the different departments in company work together to run the company was new to Joe. He’s thankful for the warm welcome and mentorship he received from his fellow colleagues. He believes that the relaxed work environment helps contribute to the high work ethic of the C2FO employees. He felt a sense of companionship between him and the other members of the SRM team. Meeting Sandy Kemper, CEO of C2FO, was one of highlights of this YEP experience because he has managed to build multiple successful startup companies, and in ten years Joe says that he could see himself at the head of his own startup company.