He sent his sketches to prospective employers, and after 300 rejection letters McFarland got a job freelancing for Marvel Comics. Working many hours for low pay, he made a name for himself and by 1990 was the highest-paid comic book artist in the industry. Frustrated over creative differences and his desire to own the rights to his characters, McFarland quit, took six other artists with him, and started his own company. He went from artist to entrepreneur overnight. While industry experts predicted he would last less than a year, McFarland didn’t even think about the future.
Spawn, his first comic, sold 1. 7 million copies. Entrepreneurship rewards individuals willing to take risks. In Todd McFarland case, the need to control his destiny drove his aspirations. His path is similar to that taken by many: receiving training at a large company, and then leaving when he decided he could provide a better product on his own. Today’s dynamic business environment has a tremendous effect on the success or failure of entrepreneurs like Todd McFarland. Economics plays a key role at the McFarland Companies.
The firm must protect the many intellectual properties it creates and licenses. The business Uses technology to support and spark creativity in developing new products. The competitive environment drives quality at McFarland, which produces high-quality products even if they cost ore and thus gains an edge over competitors. The CEO uses the Web to interact with his key demographic, or as he puts it, the freaks with long hair and cool tattoos. Spawn. Com provides a place where fans can interact with each other and with the company.
Finally, the global influence on business impacts all the other environments. Knowing he can’t control the global environment, McFarland focuses on managing what he can control. Todd McFarland purchase of Mark Maguire’s 70th home run ball for $3 million illustrates his willingness to take a risk and focus on what he controls. While any thought he was crazy, McFarland saw an opportunity. He combined the ball with several others hit by McGuire and Sammy Ass to create the McFarland Collection, which was displayed in every major league stadium and garnered enormous publicity.
A portion of the proceeds was donated to the Lou Gerri Foundation. Most significant, McFarland began a relationship with professional sports that led to his obtaining the exclusive rights to nearly every professional sports team toy license. Questions for Discussion 1 . What personality traits do entrepreneurs like Todd McFarland possess that extinguish them from other individuals? Individuals like Todd McFarland possess traits like willingness to take a risk and focus on what he controls, entrepreneurship, and effective leadership skills.
These skills long with his creative decisions from being a comic book creator, and many other things he has created, helped him gain the success he possesses because he had to will to take risks. 2. How have global competition and technology advances changed business conditions and leadership challenges? “In the past, most countries kept their businesses in each country. Everyone was more secular. With the advent of imputer technology, it has brought all worlds together.