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Open to the Opportunity

Yisroel Besser

Meny Hoffman knows a good idea when he sees one. He sold printing services online when no one thought it would fly, quickly branching out his Ptex business into call centers and marketing. Now he’s onto something completely different, encouraging Yidden to follow their business dreams, one seminar at a time.

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Michael Port shakes his head as he comes off the stage. “I mean, I did my homework and this is not what I expected.” The best-selling author, speaker, and small-business consultant takes a sip of water and reflects. “Others in the industry told me that I shouldn’t expect questions from an Orthodox Jewish crowd, that the audience would sit in the last three rows, as far from the stage as possible. They told me the people would listen carefully and take notes, but they wouldn’t be engaged.” He wipes his brow. “They were wrong. Big time.” The crowd filing out of the elegant ballroom stops to thank the speaker, ask a question, or clarify a point. “Let’s Talk Business” is the formal name of the day-long summit, held at a New Jersey country club for 1,000 participants; the caliber of speakers, the upscale venue, and sophisticated program all indicate that someone, somewhere, takes the concept of frum entrepreneurship very seriously. Port, a former actor with a shaved head and a bright smile, shrugs. “I was like, ‘Hey, I’m a motivational speaker, I can motivate anyone, even Hassidic Jews.’ But it turns out, everyone here is already motivated.”

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