In a recent interview with IdeaMensch, Anthony Toma, founder and CEO of Nine9, a new kind of entertainment firm that calls itself an “UnAgency,” talked about his successes and failures in the business world. According to Toma, he was inspired to start up Nine9 as a result of his experiences in the food retailing. It was during this stint in the grocery business that he first got involved in entertainment, becoming a franchisee of an Orlando-based outfit and opening locations all over the country.
With the knowledge he gained as a franchisee, Toma set out to build a new option for budding actors and models. His concept was an “UnAgency,” a business that puts the client first and that was dedicated to investing in the development of the 99% of talent that isn’t represented by agencies. Toma realized that a lot great talent was never making it to audiences because of the outdated and money-oriented culture at most agencies. By founding Nine9, he sought to build a business around by using cutting-edge technology to help find the untapped potential in that other 99%.
One key to Anthony Toma’s success is that believes in lifelong learning. A big part of this is his belief that the number one business skill is the ability to listen carefully. Unfortunately, listening is a skill that aspiring entrepreneurs often gloss over, but according to Toma, it’s just as important as being an effective communicator and learn more about Nine9.
Another piece of advise that Toma offers those who want to be successful in business is not to fear failure. Unfortunately, most people are so fazed by the experience of failure that they don’t learn from it. Toma believes that it has been his ability to learn and grow as a result of repeated failures that has led to the success of Nine9.
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