Entrepreneurship Series: Consulting & Entrepreneurship: Two Sides of the Same Coin
Winter Quarter 2015 Entrepreneurship Seminar Series
Featuring Neil Sahota, IBM Certified Consultant and Senior Project Manager, IBM - Global Business Services
Neil Sahota (萨冠军) is an IBM Master Inventor and Ecosystem Engagement Manager in the IBM Watson Group. With over 15+ years of experience in business, he works with high growth business partners to ideate next generation products/solutions powered by Watson. Parts of Neil’s responsibilities include identifying target markets, developing business cases, and creating the market launch strategy. Prior to this role, he was a Thought Leader Consultant and Practice Leader in IBM Global Business Services where he was responsible for the sales and delivery of complex consulting engagements spanning business strategy, new product development, revenue optimization, process improvement, and business and system integration. His work experience spans multiple industries including healthcare, life sciences, retail, travel and transportation, energy and utilities, automotive, telecommunications, media/communication, and government. Moreover, Neil is one of the few IBMers selected for IBM's Corporate Service Corps leadership program that pairs leaders with NGOs to perform community-driven economic development projects. For his assignment, Neil lived and worked in Ningbo, China where he partnered with Chinese corporate CEOs to create a leadership development program.
Neil is also an active volunteer in IBM’s Academic Initiative program that creates partnership opportunities between the IBM and the country’s top universities. He also serves as a business mentor for IBM’s Extreme Blue program that is an incubator for new product ideas. With Neil’s guidance, IBM developed new products and services in the areas of Business Analytics, Smarter Healthcare, Smarter Energy, Mobile Channel Development, and Social Media Solutions.
In addition, Neil partners with entrepreneurs to define their products, establish their target markets, and structure their companies. He is a member of the Tech Coast Angels and assists startups with investor funding. Neil also serves as a judge in the Butterworth Product Competition, mentor in the K5 Launch accelerator program, and coach for various start up competitions.
In addition to his professional work, Neil actively volunteers his time to help nonprofits and foundations with event management, fund raising, grant reviews, and site visits. Neil is also a dedicated member of the University of California, Irvine (UCI) Alumni Association and a former member on the UCI Alumni Board of Directors and Executive Committee. As the former VP of Programs, he developed the Anteater MeetUps, Virtual Roundtables, and cross-school partnerships for joint events. Neil also serves on the Board of Directors for the Orange County Marathon and actively supports their work with the OC Kids program in fighting childhood obesity.
The Entrepreneurship Seminar Series provides a real-world introduction to the theory and practice of entrepreneurship. Through a series of presentations by prestigious entrepreneurs and industry leaders, participants will explore the various organizational, strategic and financial challenges facing successful and unsuccessful entrepreneurs. Topics include start-up strategies, business idea evaluation, business plan writing, and introduction to venture capital. Free and open to the public.
For a complete listing of Entrepreneurship Seminar Series guest speakers, please visit http://www.eng.uci.edu/events/entseminars.