The Power of Referrals

Starting a business from the ground up is not for the faint of heart.

As a young entrepreneur, Pierre Sleiman (MBA ’13) was in the midst of launching his business Go Green Agriculture and was looking for some insight on how to grow his business.

“When I was considering business schools, I was looking for a school that shared the same enthusiasm and emphasis on creativity and innovation as I did,” he said. ”When I came across Rady, I felt that Rady was itself a startup and inherently shared the same level of high energy and pursuit of innovation.”

More than three years have passed since Sleiman graduated from the Rady School, and his sustainable farming business continues to flourish.

“When I started at Rady, I had just launched my company, had four employees and revenues under $100K,” he said. “Today, we have close to 50 full time employees and revenues in the millions.”

After Sleiman’s positive experience, he knew he had to spread the word to help others start down the path to success. When the Rady referral program was launched last year, Sleiman immediately knew who to reach out to.

“Luis Rodriguez was my childhood best,” he said. “We each went our own ways during college and the years after, each of us pursuing unique startup and entrepreneurial endeavors.”

Sleiman learned that Rodriguez was interested in exploring his options regarding MBA programs, but was leaning toward programs with a strong entrepreneurial focus.

“When I he was looking for an MBA program, it was obvious to me that Rady would be the right fit,” Sleiman said. “I truly believe that Rady’s entrepreneurial spirit is unmatched.”

A recommendation from a good friend and successful business owner sealed the deal for Rodriguez, who is currently a member of the ’17 MBA cohort.

“His referral carried a lot of weight because of our relationship, but a really important factor was the support for his business he claimed to find through the Rady community,” Rodriguez said. “Ultimately, the proof was in the results, because he has really been able to take his business to the next level thanks to some of the foundations and relationships he built at this school.”

Why refer?

The referral program is open to all members of the Rady School community, including current students, alumni, faculty and staff. Community members are encouraged to refer friends, family or colleagues who may be able to benefit from a program at the Rady School.

“Rady is a diverse community of individuals with a wide breadth of experiences,” Sleiman said. “The success of the community as a whole increases with each new member who joins and contributes to the family. The referral process is extremely important because it is the organic way to build the Rady community and to the success of our family.”

According to students and alumni who have participated, the process is quick and simple.

“It’s very simple: share your experience at Rady and why you loved it,” Sleiman said. “Then connect your referral directly to a Rady staff member who can tell them more about it and invite them to an informational session. It’s as easy as that.”

Interested in participating in the referral program? Learn more about the initiative and refer a student.

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