Connections 2017

Goldsboro News Argus - Progress Edition

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54 Owner Zak Fein takes an order from a customer on Thursday, Feb. 2, at Goldsboro Brew Works in downtown Goldsboro. Airmen BLEACHER SEATING TICKETS BLEACHER SEATING TICKETS CHECK US OUT AT WWW.WINGSOVERWAYNE.COM creative, and she said the idea to create a diaper cake business came from her desire to make something that was both artistic and practical. All entrepreneurs face them, but starting up a new business after spend- ing years in the structured environment of the Air Force presents a unique set of challenges. Fein and Clark were still active duty airmen while they planned their busi- ness, working long hours on hectic schedules which afforded them precious little free time to plan. "We were working full time, brewing beer all weekend, and then trying to work on this with whatever single moment of free time we had," Fein said. "And we were F-15 mechanics –– it's not like we were made of free time." After leaving her work in Air Force logistics, Mrs. Gambrell entered the more personal world of small retail business. Going from a regimented lifestyle to dealing with the inconsistencies of civilian life proved a challenge. "There have been multiple times when people have placed orders and then not shown up to get them," she said. "At the beginning, I was so excited to start that I would just go do it the second the order came in, and then they wouldn't show up." Mrs. Gambrell now requires a 50 per- cent deposit on all orders to make sure customers follow through on their com- mitments. Learning to rely on her customers has come with the realization that trust is a two-way street. "People have been burned by so many people in the past, so they want to know they can trust you," she said. "People want to put a face to the name." For Fein and Clark, getting to know the community was instrumental in making Goldsboro Brew Works happen. "We were very lucky when we chose Goldsboro as the place we were going to do this. Goldsboro loves their mili- tary," Clark said. "Us starting a business here, I can't tell you how many times somebody would hear what we were doing over at city hall in the planning department or inspections, and they'd say, 'You stayed in Golds- boro? Thank you.' That made life so much easier." Air Force experi- ence also goes a long way toward helping former airmen transition to civilian life. Mrs. Gam- brell's logistics experience has been instrumental in helping her coordinate her business. "The Air Force taught me how to be structured, how to network," she said. "It taught me to take the good with the bad and find common ground with people." Mrs. Gambrell said her Air Force experience also clued her in to the more technical aspects of running a business, Continued from 53 See AIRMEN, Page 55

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