Tomaso Veneroso began his career at the Fonderie Acciaierie Rojale “FAR Spa” in Reana del Rojale (Italy), a leading company in the production of spare parts for the mining industry, and in 1999 he was made CEO of Amcast Inc. He has senior level executive experience in restructuring operations of manufacturing and international non-profit organizations. Tomaso applies mathematics to the business world, which has helped turn Amcast’s business model into a success. Follow him @amcastinc.
Who is your hero?
Any responsible individual that put others before him or herself. One of my leaders, if I have to be specific, is Preston Tucker.
What’s the single best piece of business advice that helped shape who you are as an entrepreneur today, and why?
Own it! Always decide. No matter if it is a good or bad decision, always decide. Never stand still, always move. It took me a long time to embrace my idea of sustainability and environmental responsibility as the core for my business plan. It is not easy to be innovative in the mining industry. It took 15 years to implement a sustainable and environmental friendly machine that transforms rock by product (waste) into usable sand. We did it! We decided, and we moved on, no matter all the obstacles along the way.
What’s the biggest mistake you ever made in your business, and what did you learn from it that others can learn from too?
Being arrogant and thinking that I knew it all. Solution: acknowledge your limits and surround yourself with good team players. Ask for help! Arrogance is a huge limit to growth.
What do you do during the first hour of your business day and why?
I start my first hour by saying good morning to everybody in my organization. I am a people person and I like to start my day with a handshake.
What’s your best financial/cash-flow related tip for entrepreneurs just getting started?
Watch your expenses — acknowledge what you really need or what is not so important to buy. Get paid! Revenue only and no cash is no good. Pay all your debt on time.
What’s ONE thing you recommend ALL aspiring or current entrepreneurs do right now to take their biz to the next level?
Be innovative and creative. Do not be afraid to try. Jump in the dark. It is amazing!
What’s your definition of success? How will you know when you’ve finally “succeeded” in your business?
Success is seeing smiling faces among your team players. Success is a shake of hands from a colleague that tells you they are proud to work with you. The bar is always higher and success (in my book) cannot be reached. If you feel that you have succeeded, then you are done and your biz is going to implode.
The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.