By Sarah Parrish, Intern
Andrew Lambert is a name you may be familiar with; he’s the talkative, charismatic president of Lambert Consulting. He’s an action movie buff, and an Indiana University basketball super-fan. Lambert comes across as laid-back, but beneath that is 20 years of experience and a story about building a successful business out of nothing.
“A lot of people, their story begins with this happiness, this legacy, if you will.” Lambert said, “Mine is like fire and brimstone.”
Lambert Consulting rose from the ashes of the Small Business Development Center, which was connected to Ivy Tech, a local community college in Bloomington. When this center dissolved unceremoniously, Lambert took the opportunity to reach out to some of the contacts he’d met through the center.
“I started my business because I really cared about the people I was helping,” Lambert said, “And for me, watching that particular office fall apart was so disheartening. I knew I could not leave these other entrepreneurs, these people who really were trying to start video businesses or DJ businesses or bakeries, or coffee shops out in the lurch.”
Lambert takes an education-focused approach to working with clients, he wants to help people understand how to grow their business. His emphasis on education looks not only at the present, but also the future. “I want them to come and actually walk away, not only seeing business growth, but being able to take the information or the packages that we put together for them and train their staff so that this generation of growth keeps going.”
One tip Lambert has for aspiring entrepreneurs is to start a nonprofit, and to try to run it successfully for a few years to get a business sense.
“I believe in a phrase,” Lambert said, “called being ‘Selfishly Selfless’.” In essence, this means working with nonprofits in the area. He put an emphasis on getting involved with the community and bettering the lives of those around you. “I think ‘Selfishly Selfless’ allows you to see and challenge yourself to personal growth while positively impacting other people.”
When Lambert started this company, he had two major goals. The first was to employ a group of people and help support them as a way of giving forward. The second was to expand across the US. While Lambert Consulting’s midwestern footprint is growing, the company also has an employee set up in Washington state in anticipation of expansion.
“My hope is that as my company grows,” Lambert said, “and the next generation of employees, and clients and business partners come in, we start to build this big circle of just good community people, who are not only trying to impact their bottom line, but also trying to impact all the people around them.”