"Who's Hot?" Interview
By: Omar Cook
This week's "Who's Hot?" Entrepreneur of the Week is Maurice Woodard, owner of Champ System Clothing and Shoe Compnay! Maurice hails from Kansas City, Missouri and is a graduate of Lincoln University in Missouri. Champ System opened up its 1st location in Kansas City, Missouri and features multiple sectors such as sports apparel, shoes, and accessories which is available for sports teams and for personal use. This brand also features lifestyle wear, and urban wear and is slowly moving into producing casual wear. This Spring and summer, Maurice plans on releasing and adding more colorways to his signature collection tennis shoes called the signature1s.
Aside from running his own business, Maurice doubles up as a professional football player internationally where he has played in Europe and also in China. In the off season, he focuses in on his business and also works as a stunt double for sports movies, commercials, and TV shows. Some of his work includes working as a motion capture actor for the Madden video game series with EA Sports!
We talked with Maurice Woodard in an exclusive interview, check it out below!
QUESTION: What sparked you to start your business? How did the idea come about?
Maurice: The idea of champ system came about in college. I used to create T shirts that matched the upcoming tennis shoes that were releasing so people would buy custom T shirts, then match up their tennis shoes. People always ask me how do you become the Champ and I would always say this is a system. That is how I came up with Champ system. In college a lot of people thought it was a joke as far as my brand. I would also say I didn't take it as serious as I should have until my 1st season playing in Europe and I began to hear the fans ask for my apparel. I began to get a high demand internationally that's when I really realized that I had something special.
QUESTION: What advice would you give to young people looking to start their own business?
Maurice: To never give up and if it's your dream and something you love go after it. There will be a lot of bumps in the road however do not give up.
QUESTION: What are some of the necessary skills that you've seen are needed to run a successful business?
Maurice: Some necessary skills I will have to say are leadership, great commitment skills, good marketing skills, good communication skills, and some problem solving skills.
QUESTION: What have been some of your failures, and what have you learned from them?
Maurice: I have ran into a quite a few failures ,well I don’t consider them failures because I overcame them but there were times that I was scammed. There were times where people told me my brand was not good enough to be showcased.
QUESTION: What motivates you?
Maurice: My family friends and peers and let's not forget my fans is to motivate me the most.
QUESTION: What are some things your business does in the community?
Maurice: We give back a lot to our community especially to youth sports teams and organizations.
QUESTION: How do you define success?
Maurice: I would define success as creating a dream, chasing a dream and not giving up on a dream. I would also define success as overcoming any failure or bump. Completing the task at hand.
QUESTION: How do you build a successful customer base?
Maurice: I believe that building a successful customer base is supplying them with great customer service in a product that can not be duplicated. Creating that special moment for their customer.
QUESTION: Do you believe there is a formula to being a successful entrepreneur?
Maurice: Yes I believe that there is a formula, however, I believe everyone has their own formula because everyone's path is different.
QUESTION: Who is your greatest inspiration?
Maurice: My parents are my greatest inspiration.
QUESTION: What is your favorite aspect of being a business owner?
Maurice: My favorite aspect of being a business owner is that it is mine. I created it and no one will ever be able to take that away from me.
QUESTION: How do you go about marketing your business?
Maurice: We market a lot of our business through social media, word of mouth and fashion shows.
QUESTION: What sacrifices have you had to make to keep your business running?
Maurice: I've made a lot of sacrifices financially for my business and I've missed out on quite a few things, such as special moments with my family of friends.
QUESTION: What company or business do you admire most other than yours and why?
Maurice: The company that I admire the most is Amazon. I think it is genius .
QUESTION: Where do you see yourself and your business in 10 years?
Maurice: I definitely see in 10 years Champ System clothing and shoe company being a major competitor in our market.