Jeremy Katusak

Professional Engineer and founder of a small consulting firm, Cold Eyes, PLLC. My objective is to provide advice for engineering, operations, and high-level strategy based on my experience in manufacturing, international coordination, construction and commissioning, process modeling and optimization, and strategy planning.

Recent Answers

This may be an unpopular opinion, but I would take a second look at what your limitations on capital actually are. Software development has this reputation of being extremely expensive, but my (limited) experience has shown that you can hire developers at very low costs if you are willing to do a few things.

1. You have to be willing to learn enough about coding to not be taken advantage of and to be able to communicate effectively with a developer. You want to do this anyways so that you can really know your product.

2. You have to be willing to look into the global market for developers. You might be surprised at the low cost you can find by exploring options in other countries.

3. You have to be flexible. The first developer I worked with was least for the first 80% of the software. After that, I had to renegotiate how much he would be paid (ended up paying only 50%) and move on to a different developer to finish the software. This approach only worked because I understood the software and existing code well enough to forecast how much the completion would cost.

Feel free to give me a call. We can go over the financials and your background. You probably have more options than simply giving equity away.

Several great responses so far, but there are two additional points that I think are worth noting.

If you have previous work experience, you may want to take a look at what unemployment benefits you are eligible. It's certainly not a hand-out as you have paid into this system through your income tax. An additional benefit is the accountability that the unemployment system creates. In order to receive the unemployment benefits, you have to show that you are actively pursuing job opportunities. This helped a colleague of mine get her resume to absolutely every open opportunity and ended up with her landing a much higher paying job than she previously held.

A second piece of advice would be to set realistic expectations and understand that your next step isn't where you will be "stuck" for the rest of your life. In other words, if you had to choose between a minimum wage job and no job at all, the minimum wage job is the way to go. By creating an income stream and managing your time appropriately, you will be able to move on to bigger and better things in no time at all!

Feel free to reach out to discuss this further. I'd be happy to have a free call to help.

We would need to calculate the total running wattage. It would also be useful to have the starting wattage for each component as it could restrict the number of components that can be turned on at once (or even the order in which they are turned on).

Feel free to give me a call and we can walk through the generator sizing calculations.

The first considerations would be based around your specific requirements. Are you going for the toughest bag? The lightest? Something that has a ton of tech built in? Those types of questions have a tendency to lead you to your competition. You can then use the materials of choice from your competition as your baseline.

From here, you can start looking at materials that would beat or at least match your competition. A comparison of the materials should include the technical aspects, as well as the commercial. How much is it? But also, where is it readily available? That will start to guide you to manufacturers. Of course, there is shipping to consider from the manufacturer to your distribution center. So you'll want to compare if it's cheaper to use a manufacturer closer to your distribution at the cost of shipping the raw material or if it's cheaper to use a manufacturer further away and pay to ship the finished product.

Sorry, that ended up being a bit longer of an answer than I was originally aiming for. As you can see, there are a lot of questions that need to be answered to guide you towards your material selection and manufacturer selection. Feel free to reach out to discuss this with me further. I have a few manufacturers in North Mexico who have textile/sewing operations. I'd be interested in seeing how your business develops!

This is a great question. One of my associates works for a software company that is deploying an "in-house" solution for a major cement provider. The client had previously been working with commercial solution but quickly determined that a customized solution was more appropriate for their needs.

As I'm sure you've seen from a quick Google search, Tenna, Linxup, Verizon, CloudHawk, and Asset Panda are all fairly well regarded.

In your case, I think we would need to discuss the number of assets to be tracked, what preferences you have for tracking technology, and what additional information needs to be provided (since you had mentioned processes). From here, I'd be happy to do a commercial bid evaluation of existing solutions, as well as point you towards the costs of developing a customized solution built specifically for your solution.

Please let me know if I can help.

Jeremy Katusak, P.E.

Without additional information, it's hard to provide any input as far as what you should expect.

The first question I would be asking is "what impact does this product launch have on the community?" PR is about the specific area you are targeting, as opposed to general marketing which can cover much larger geographic areas. Is this product made in your local area? Does it echo some value of the community? Or is it something that meets a specific need of the community? All of these aspects can lead to higher conversion rates for those within the area, which you can then quantify against the cost.

As far as cost, I'm again going to have to say that there isn't enough information provided. In some cases, PR can be free. Just providing the story to local journalists can be a decent start. In other cases, you're paying membership fees for the local chamber of commerce, etc.

Sorry I can't give you more detailed information without knowing more about your product and community. Feel free to reach out for a follow up call.

The short answer (with respects to problems) is everything that comes along with capital. The good news is that there is significantly less red tape to cut through for innovation!

In my journey from working at a Fortune 100 firm to starting my own company, I had a "transition" working with a medium sized company.

As I moved from the large firm to the medium company, I noticed the number of resources drop off significantly and really gained an appreciation for how much information is free when you know how to look for it. In this setting, I found that I was actually able to be more innovative as I still had access to capital for innovation experiments and there were fewer barriers as far as corporate policies.

Moving from the medium company to my own startup, the resources obviously dropped off even further, this time with respect to capital. Of course, there is no problem as far as making the go/no-go decision on pursuing an innovative effort, but I also have to be clever with what type of front end studies are performed.

Innovation as a startup is essential and it's great fun when you figure out how cheaply evaluate efforts to determine if making a larger investment is viable. Feel free to reach out to me to discuss further!

The first question I would be asking is how this program lines up with the strategic vision of the company. Does this program line up with existing competitive advantages or would you be putting additional resources into building up new competitive advantages for the sake of the program?
You would want to take some time to consider the impact of the new program on existing products/services.

If the new program does not have the potential to cannibalize other aspects of the business, you would then look at if it is consistent with your company's brand.

Obviously, these areas are only starting points and understanding the detail of the existing business and potential new program would be necessary to discuss what is applicable to your specific scenario. Feel free to contact me to discuss further. During my time at a manufacturing services company, I introduced a consulting business line, allowing us to bring in revenue from clients who choose to work with a competitor for the manufacturing services project!

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