Congratulations to Chris Martine, Lehigh ISE '10 '11G who just started his own company, DrinkLynk, after 4 1/2 years as a Senior Financial Services Consultant at IBM! From his LinkedIn page: "DrinkLynk is an efficient online marketplace and app where nightlife venues bid on customers in real-time based on price, location, time, & service." I supervised Chris's independent study project on revenue management in the music industry in his last semester as an undergraduate. Back then he was already talking about launching his own startup along a similar theme, involving online apps and restaurants/bars. I am so happy to see his dream became a reality after all.
It is easy for young graduates to get sidetracked once they enter the workforce and forget what they really love to do because they have college loans to pay back or the salary at their current job is hard to turn down or their parents don't want them to quit their secure job. In the other extreme, it is also tempting for young graduates who are not happy with their job in industry to decide to become entrepreneurs because being their own bosses sounds more appealing than dealing with superiors (leaving the problem of reaching customers for some other day, as well as issues of political intelligence and personal growth).
Hence, I find it wonderful to see someone who had been passionate about leadership and entrepreneurship back in college not give up on his dream but also not give up his job simply to get away from something, and instead make the jump five years after graduation, after he has successfully gathered business experience through top consulting assignments and has the skills and perspective to make his startup a success. Knowing Chris, I expect great things from his startup.
Learn more on DrinkLynk's Facebook page.