Our Islands, Our Future

LanaiTabura-RMaui Economic Development Board (MEDB) presented an Entrepreneurs’ Toolkit Bootcamp for Lanai residents on June 25th and 26th. The intense two-day workshop was part of the MEDB Innovation Series, a grassroots effort to help small businesses establish strong systems, processes, tools, and best practices to build a solid foundation for success. The free event provided attendees with helpful tips and resources to assist in launching their startups or boosting their existing businesses.

The workshop opened with keynote speaker Lanai Tabura. A Lanai native, Tabura is a well known entrepreneur, radio DJ, comedian, and actor. “Treating others with aloha is the way to cultivate relationships with everyone you meet,” Tabura said. “Adaptability and innovation are also a critical trait for an entrepreneur to possess. We adapt by our readiness to take every opportunity that comes to us, and the ability to innovate on the fly points to resourcefulness and creativity.” Lanai’s brother, Chef Adam Tabura, spoke to the group about his entrepreneurial journey and his newest business ventures. In 2013, the two brothers, teamed with Shaun Felipe, took first place on the Food Television Network’s “The Great Food Truck Race”. Additionally, Adam hosted a pau hana Saturday afternoon featuring some of his winning food truck creations.

During the two-day workshop, participants learned the basics of business startup creation using the Lean Startup method with the Lean Startup Canvas (LSC) – think of it as a roadmap. Omar Sultan, Luke Tucker, and Meli James of Sultan Ventures led the workshop. Attendees worked in teams to create a fictional startup or use an idea they created using the LSC, presenting their business plans for feedback. On the second day, the teams pitched their ideas before the workshop team, giving them valuable feedback to ensure the lessons they learned about the Lean Startup method were reinforced. “We were taught how to use the Lean Canvas, an actionable and entrepreneur-focused business plan, which gave us insight into whether we have a solid and effective venture,” said workshop participant Clay Richardson. Lanai resident Jina Lopez added, “This workshop helped me to understand aspects of business I formerly didn’t know how to use, such as creating a business plan. It’s given me a different viewpoint on how to be a leader and implement ideas.”

This event was amazing! The whole weekend gave people inspiration and resources that you pay for in college. My brother Adam and I hope to be a part of many more MEDB Entrepreneur Toolkit Workshops.

Lanai Tabura – Entrepreneur, radio DJ, comedian, actor, and 2013 winner of The Great Food Truck Race (reality television show)