160 episodes

Telling the stories of entrepreneurship and builders in Cleveland and throughout Northeast Ohio. Every Thursday, Jeffrey Stern helps map the Cleveland/NEO business ecosystem by talking to founders, investors, and community builders to learn what makes Cleveland/NEO special.

Lay of The Land Jeffrey Stern

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 26 Ratings

Telling the stories of entrepreneurship and builders in Cleveland and throughout Northeast Ohio. Every Thursday, Jeffrey Stern helps map the Cleveland/NEO business ecosystem by talking to founders, investors, and community builders to learn what makes Cleveland/NEO special.

    #155: Ethan Holmes (Holmes Mouthwatering)

    #155: Ethan Holmes (Holmes Mouthwatering)

    Ethan Holmes — founder and CEO of Holmes Mouthwatering, a Cleveland-based manufacturer of all-natural applesauce, made with Ohio-grown apples, pears, and local apple cider. 
    To date, over 50,000 customers have purchased and consumed Holmes’ products, processing over 500,000 pounds of apples and delivering over 250,000 units to consumers across the US. Holmes Mouthwatering applesauce can be found in retailers including Heinen's, Whole Foods Market, Kroger and Giant Eagle, among others.
    Inspired by his Grandfather who had always made food at home from scratch, when Ethan was 15 years old, he asked him how to make applesauce and this passion was born. Armed with 100 pounds of apples that his parents gifted him for Christmas, Ethan chopped, cooked, and experimented until his recipe was perfect.
    Over a decade later, with national expansion, ~$800,000 in capital from programs like Cleveland Chain Reaction and the Chobani Incubator, it was a ton of fun to hear from Ethan about his journey building Holmes Mouthwatering and the work he’s doing to inspire the next generation of Cleveland entrepreneurs through his own initiative!
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    SPONSORS: John Carroll University Boler College of Business || Impact Architects & Ninety
    John Carroll University Boler College of Business: https://business.jcu.edu/ As we’ve heard time and time again from entrepreneurs on Lay of The Land — many of whom are proud alumni of John Carroll University —  success in this ever-changing world of business requires a dynamic and innovative mindset, deep understanding of emerging technology and systems, strong ethics, leadership prowess, acute business acumen… all qualities nurtured through the Boler College of Business!
    With 4 different MBA programs of study — spanning Professional, Online, Hybrid, and 1-Year-Flexible — The Boler College of Business provides flexible timelines and various class structures for each MBA Track — including online, in-person, hybrid and asynchronous — to offer the most effective options for you, in addition to the ability to participate in an elective International Study Tour, providing unparalleled opportunities to expand your global business knowledge by networking with local companies overseas and experiencing a new culture.
    The career impact of a Boler MBA is formative and will help prepare you for this future of business and get more out of your career. To learn more about John Carroll University’s Boler MBA programs, please go to business.jcu.edu
    The Boler College of Business is fully accredited by AACSB International, the highest accreditation a College of Business can have.
    Impact Architects & NinetyLay of The Land is brought to you by Ninety. As a Lay of The Land listener, you can leverage a free trial with Ninety, the platform that helps teams build great companies and the only officially licensed software for EOS® — used by over 7,000 companies and 100,000 users!
    This episode is brought to you by Impact Architects. As we share the stories of entrepreneurs building incredible organizations throughout NEO, Impact Architects helps those leaders — many of whom we’ve heard from as guests on Lay of The Land — realize their visions and build great organizations. I believe in Impact Architects and the people behind it so much, that I have actually joined them personally in their mission to help leaders gain focus, align together, and thrive by doing what they love! As a listener, you can sit down for a free consultation with Impact Architects by visiting ia.layoftheland.fm!
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    LINKS:
    Connect with Ethan Holmes on Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ethan-holmes-2b5b0124/Holmes Mouthwatering: https://holmesmouthwatering.com/Follow Holmes Mouthwatering on X: https://twitter.com/holmesasauceFollow Holmes Mouthwatering on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/holmesmouthwatering
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    Past guests include Justi

    • 32 min
    #154: Mohamed Kamara (InovCares)

    #154: Mohamed Kamara (InovCares)

    Mohamed Kamara, founder and CEO of InovCares.
    Grounded in a sobering reality: The United States has the highest rates of maternal mortality in the industrialized world. In May 2017, having lost both his sister and aunt to preventable pregnancy-related causes, Mo found himself in a place with the motivation and determination to confront this maternal mortality crisis head-on.
    Mo ultimately founded InovCares to this end — to address the concerns of women of color who are, unfortunately, often dismissed in healthcare settings. Where in addition, many of them do not receive culturally humble and competent care that promotes trust between patients and providers. The cumulative effect of these dynamics is diminished confidence in healthcare, misdiagnosis, improper treatment, and, ultimately, worse outcomes for women of color and their babies — amounting to over $32B in total maternal morbidity costs across US births.
    InovCares’ platform — which has already supported over 5,000 women of color with over 10,000 virtual consultations so far and is backed by organizations like Andreessen Horowitz TxO Fund, Ohio Impact Fund, and Jumpstart Foundry — is designed to minimize common barriers faced by pregnant and post-partum women by reducing costs, wait times and transportation needs, improving patient access to essential testing and prescriptions, providing a range of culturally competent specialists, and empowering and educating patients through easy access to online content.
    Mo’s story is incredibly inspiring and it was a real pleasure to learn more about his journey so far.
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    SPONSORS: JumpStart
    JumpStartLay of the Land is brought to you by JumpStart, providing services and resources to fuel the growth of technology startups across Ohio. JumpStart’s experienced advisors offer personalized business services to help you overcome challenges and prepare to raise capital. With 1:1 advising, workshops, and accelerator programs, JumpStart has helped thousands of entrepreneurs — many of whom we’ve heard from here on Lay of The Land — transition from the early growth stage to venture-readiness. Additionally, founders can tap into a network of resources in marketing, software development, finance, and talent recruitment to drive their companies forward. to learn more about JumpStart please go to JumpStartInc.org/startups to get started today.
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    LINKS:
    InovCares Website: https://www.inovcares.com/Connect with Mo: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mohamedkamara/InovCares on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/inovcares
    -----
    Stay up to date by signing up for Lay of The Land's weekly newsletter — sign up here.
    Past guests include Justin Bibb (Mayor of Cleveland), Pat Conway (Great Lakes Brewing), Steve Potash (OverDrive), Umberto P. Fedeli (The Fedeli Group), Lila Mills (Signal Cleveland), Stewart Kohl (The Riverside Company), Mitch Kroll (Findaway — Acquired by Spotify), and many more.
    Connect with Jeffrey Stern on LinkedIn — https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffreypstern/
    Follow Jeffrey Stern on X @sternJefe — https://twitter.com/sternjefe
    Follow Lay of The Land on X @podlayoftheland
    https://www.jeffreys.page/

    • 47 min
    #153: David Tirpak (Miracle K9 Training)

    #153: David Tirpak (Miracle K9 Training)

    David Tirpak, founder of Miracle K9 Training — Since founding the company in 2019, David has grown Miracle K9 Training to a thriving 15-person organization, a multi-million-dollar top-line revenue business, and one of the most respected dog training centers in Northeast Ohio! 
    David's dog training story started when he got his very first dog, Vera. As someone who has never had dogs growing up and didn't really know what he was doing with one, the first logical step seemed like finding a dog trainer to learn everything he could from. After working with three different dog trainers and working under another for over two years, he started to realize that there was a huge gap in the dog training world for true behavioral rehabilitation.
    Shortly after David started his first dog training company, Heights Canine Dog Training, he spent the next three years traveling the country to meet other world-renowned dog trainers and dedicated himself to creating dog training programs geared towards helping the everyday dog owner to be successful long term with dogs that have more serious behavioral issues. In those three years, David helped to build Heights Canine into a thriving business with three locations across Ohio gaining national recognition for the work they were doing.
    In January 2019, David left the company to get back to what he loves doing — training dogs — and formed Miracle K9 Training, a specialized dog training facility that was first and foremost, a dog training center, which meant more specialized staff, a larger group of trainers, and additional services like daycare, boarding, and grooming that have an emphasis on keeping the dogs mentally stimulated and structured during their stay.
    David (recent Forbes 30 Under 30 Cleveland winner) has such a genuine passion and enthusiasm for this work, it was a real joy to learn more about his journey, philosophy on dogs, growth as an entrepreneur, and impact here in Northeast Ohio.
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    SPONSORS: John Carroll University Boler College of Business || Impact Architects & Ninety
    John Carroll University Boler College of Business: https://business.jcu.edu/ As we’ve heard time and time again from entrepreneurs on Lay of The Land — many of whom are proud alumni of John Carroll University —  success in this ever-changing world of business requires a dynamic and innovative mindset, deep understanding of emerging technology and systems, strong ethics, leadership prowess, acute business acumen… all qualities nurtured through the Boler College of Business!
    With 4 different MBA programs of study — spanning Professional, Online, Hybrid, and 1-Year-Flexible — The Boler College of Business provides flexible timelines and various class structures for each MBA Track — including online, in-person, hybrid and asynchronous — to offer the most effective options for you, in addition to the ability to participate in an elective International Study Tour, providing unparalleled opportunities to expand your global business knowledge by networking with local companies overseas and experiencing a new culture.
    The career impact of a Boler MBA is formative and will help prepare you for this future of business and get more out of your career. To learn more about John Carroll University’s Boler MBA programs, please go to business.jcu.edu
    The Boler College of Business is fully accredited by AACSB International, the highest accreditation a College of Business can have.
    Impact Architects & NinetyLay of The Land is brought to you by Ninety. As a Lay of The Land listener, you can leverage a free trial with Ninety, the platform that helps teams build great companies and the only officially licensed software for EOS® — used by over 7,000 companies and 100,000 users!
    This episode is brought to you by Impact Architects. As we share the stories of entrepreneurs building incredible organizations throughout NEO, Impact Architects helps those leaders — many of whom we’ve heard from as guests

    • 1 hr 15 min
    #152: Jim Pshock (Bravo Wellness)

    #152: Jim Pshock (Bravo Wellness)

    Jim Pshock, Founder of Bravo Wellness, which he successfully exited to Medical Mutual in 2020.
    After 20 years working in the insurance industry, Jim observed a need and a niche for employee wellness incentives, as health claims data indicated that the vast majority of healthcare spending is related to lifestyle-influenced & largely preventable claims. Health risks such as obesity, tobacco use, and low participation in health screenings that provide early detection of problems were directly correlated with rising costs in healthcare and a poorer quality of life for millions of people.
    In 2008, Jim founded Bravo Wellness to improve these lifestyle numbers, saving all parties involved a significant amount of money and improving and extending the lifespans of participating people by offering an outcomes and progress-based-incentive-program that rewards those achieving health goals and provides alternatives for those who are medically unable to meet those goals.
    From inception to acquisition, Jim grew Bravo Wellness to serve over 2 million members nationally with over 175 employees, 150 of which were here in Cleveland.
    This was an awesome conversation and Jim is an awesome person — we cover everything from the wisdom of lessons learned in kindergarten, to the power of incentives in everyday life, post-acquisition reflections, to what Jim is focused on now, with the bandwidth to invest in other entrepreneurs, advise, consult and be intentional about his work as he spends more time with his family.
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    SPONSORS: John Carroll University Boler College of Business || Impact Architects & Ninety
    John Carroll University Boler College of Business: https://business.jcu.edu/ As we’ve heard time and time again from entrepreneurs on Lay of The Land — many of whom are proud alumni of John Carroll University —  success in this ever-changing world of business requires a dynamic and innovative mindset, deep understanding of emerging technology and systems, strong ethics, leadership prowess, acute business acumen… all qualities nurtured through the Boler College of Business!
    With 4 different MBA programs of study — spanning Professional, Online, Hybrid, and 1-Year-Flexible — The Boler College of Business provides flexible timelines and various class structures for each MBA Track — including online, in-person, hybrid and asynchronous — to offer the most effective options for you, in addition to the ability to participate in an elective International Study Tour, providing unparalleled opportunities to expand your global business knowledge by networking with local companies overseas and experiencing a new culture.
    The career impact of a Boler MBA is formative and will help prepare you for this future of business and get more out of your career. To learn more about John Carroll University’s Boler MBA programs, please go to business.jcu.edu
    The Boler College of Business is fully accredited by AACSB International, the highest accreditation a College of Business can have.
    Impact Architects & NinetyLay of The Land is brought to you by Ninety. As a Lay of The Land listener, you can leverage a free trial with Ninety, the platform that helps teams build great companies and the only officially licensed software for EOS® — used by over 7,000 companies and 100,000 users!
    This episode is brought to you by Impact Architects. As we share the stories of entrepreneurs building incredible organizations throughout NEO, Impact Architects helps those leaders — many of whom we’ve heard from as guests on Lay of The Land — realize their visions and build great organizations. I believe in Impact Architects and the people behind it so much, that I have actually joined them personally in their mission to help leaders gain focus, align together, and thrive by doing what they love! As a listener, you can sit down for a free consultation with Impact Architects by visiting ia.layoftheland.fm!
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    LINKS:https://www.linkedin.com/in/jim-pshock-034

    • 1 hr 6 min
    #151: Kaleb Dumot (Integrity Power Search)

    #151: Kaleb Dumot (Integrity Power Search)

    Kaleb Dumot — founder of Integrity Power Search here in Cleveland, a boutique search firm for technology companies all across the US and Canada.
    Since starting Integrity Power Search out of his parent’s basement in 2012, Kaleb has drastically grown the firm, successfully executing over 2,000+ retained searches with client companies that have collectively created $100’s billions of value in exits, many of whose stories we’ve shared here on Lay of The Land like Dallas Hogensen from Felux (Episode 86), AC Evans from Drips (Episode 39), and others like RVShare (Episode 10). In addition, Integrity Power Search has worked with many other prominent organizations like Klarna, StockX, Duolingo, and over a hundred others, backed by many of the top-tier funds and investors in the industry!
    In our conversation today, we unpack Kaleb’s journey building IPS — taking it from a garage startup to the full-stack search firm for high-growth startups and technology companies that it has become today, and we cover recruiting, entrepreneurship, and all things talent. Kaleb has awesome perspective on these topics having worked with so many startups over their stages of growth and been a direct witness to the evolution of Cleveland, Northeast Ohio, Ohio, and the larger Midwest startup ecosystems over the last decade.
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    SPONSORS: John Carroll University Boler College of Business || Impact Architects & Ninety
    John Carroll University Boler College of Business: https://business.jcu.edu/ As we’ve heard time and time again from entrepreneurs on Lay of The Land — many of whom are proud alumni of John Carroll University —  success in this ever-changing world of business requires a dynamic and innovative mindset, deep understanding of emerging technology and systems, strong ethics, leadership prowess, acute business acumen… all qualities nurtured through the Boler College of Business!
    With 4 different MBA programs of study — spanning Professional, Online, Hybrid, and 1-Year-Flexible — The Boler College of Business provides flexible timelines and various class structures for each MBA Track — including online, in-person, hybrid and asynchronous — to offer the most effective options for you, in addition to the ability to participate in an elective International Study Tour, providing unparalleled opportunities to expand your global business knowledge by networking with local companies overseas and experiencing a new culture.
    The career impact of a Boler MBA is formative and will help prepare you for this future of business and get more out of your career. To learn more about John Carroll University’s Boler MBA programs, please go to business.jcu.edu
    The Boler College of Business is fully accredited by AACSB International, the highest accreditation a College of Business can have.
    Impact Architects & NinetyLay of The Land is brought to you by Ninety. As a Lay of The Land listener, you can leverage a free trial with Ninety, the platform that helps teams build great companies and the only officially licensed software for EOS® — used by over 7,000 companies and 100,000 users!
    This episode is brought to you by Impact Architects. As we share the stories of entrepreneurs building incredible organizations throughout NEO, Impact Architects helps those leaders — many of whom we’ve heard from as guests on Lay of The Land — realize their visions and build great organizations. I believe in Impact Architects and the people behind it so much, that I have actually joined them personally in their mission to help leaders gain focus, align together, and thrive by doing what they love! As a listener, you can sit down for a free consultation with Impact Architects by visiting ia.layoftheland.fm!
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    LINKS:
    Learn more about Integrity Power Search — https://www.integritypowersearch.com/Connect with Kaleb Dumot on LinkedIn — https://www.linkedin.com/in/kalebdumot/
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    • 50 min
    #150: Jeffrey Stern on Entrepreneurship, Product Management, Investing, Passion & Ambition, the Race to the Bottom of Attention, Founding Insights, Flanuering and lots more (Wisdom, Wealth, and Wellness Podcast)

    #150: Jeffrey Stern on Entrepreneurship, Product Management, Investing, Passion & Ambition, the Race to the Bottom of Attention, Founding Insights, Flanuering and lots more (Wisdom, Wealth, and Wellness Podcast)

    Every 50th episode on Lay of The Land thus far, I’ve tried to honor the request I occasionally get, that from time to time, listeners would like to hear more of my own thoughts and flip the proverbial script from host to guest.
    ...On the 50th episode, I explored my own professional journey, the concept of startup ecosystems, and what it takes to get the entrepreneurial flywheel going
    …On the 100th episode, I reflected on what universal lessons I think we can take with us from Lay of The Land: what are the patterns and commonalities across all of the stories we’ve heard from people trying to build great things — from what inspires and motivates founders to pursue entrepreneurship in the first place, to where founding ideas actually come from, to the meaning and importance of culture.
    Which brings us to episode 150. Personally, I’m much more a fan of listening than I am of speaking; to reference the greatest Cleveland entrepreneur of all time, who unfortunately we won’t get the opportunity to ever have on the podcast as he passed away in 1937, but fortunately, there is quite a lot written and documented about John D. Rockefeller — he often recited a poem that reads:

    A wise old owl lived in an oakthe more he saw the less he spokethe less he spoke, the more he heardwhy aren’t we all like that wise old bird?For me, this poem resonates deeply. Lay of The Land has become my Oak Tree in that regard as it allows me to hear, to listen, and to learn! With that said, for the 150th episode of Lay of The Land, I’ll continue the tradition of taking a deliberate pause, deviating from the wisdom of the owl, and share some of my own thinking.
    Fortunately, my friend Jonathan Satovsky runs his own podcast called Wisdom, Wealth, and Wellness and hosted me as a guest there where I got to share some of this thinking… and really in great company as he’s featured many far wiser than myself on his podcast like:
    Dan Ariely, one of the pioneers of behavioral economics, Greg Harden, an executive and performance coach to folks like Tom Brady and Michael Phelps, Joel Greenblatt, a renowned value investor and author of one of the books actually that got me into investing many years ago… and many others! In our episode, which I’m resharing on Lay of The Land today, I get to unpack a whole variety of unfettered reflections on entrepreneurship, product management, investing, passion and ambition, the race to the bottom of attention, founding insights, flanuering and a lot more! I really enjoyed being the guest on the podcast for once… So with that, I hope you all enjoy this conversation as much as I did — and if you do, I encourage you check out other episodes from Jonathan’s podcast as well !

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    Stay up to date by signing up for Lay of The Land's weekly newsletter — sign up here.
    Past guests include Justin Bibb (Mayor of Cleveland), Pat Conway (Great Lakes Brewing), Steve Potash (OverDrive), Umberto P. Fedeli (The Fedeli Group), Lila Mills (Signal Cleveland), Stewart Kohl (The Riverside Company), Mitch Kroll (Findaway — Acquired by Spotify), and many more.
    Connect with Jeffrey Stern on LinkedIn — https://www.linkedin.com/in/jeffreypstern/
    Follow Jeffrey Stern on X @sternJefe — https://twitter.com/sternjefe
    Follow Lay of The Land on X @podlayoftheland
    https://www.jeffreys.page/

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
26 Ratings

26 Ratings

MJ Hyr ,

Jeffrey is a skilled interviewer :)

Always enjoy listening each week and learning about interesting folks doing interesting things in The Land. Thanks Jeffrey!

Emmy_shmemmy ,

Great podcast that’s filling a void

I’ve really enjoyed the interviews and conversations that have been had on the podcast so far! It’s great to hear the perspective and experiences of different individuals in the Cleveland entrepreneurial and start up scene. The podcast provides helpful information for current entrepreneurs in The Land or those considering an entrepreneurial venture. There have been so many great take always in just the few episodes I’ve listened to.

ClaraOro ,

Wonderful intro!

As a new Clevelander (and non-boomerang!), this podcast has been an incredible way to get to know what’s happening on the city. Each voice and guest is unique, but as it goes on a clearer picture of the local fabric is forming for me. Thank you for putting this together!

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