Veteran Entrepreneur: Jim Newenhouse

Written by: Brady Drake

Photo by Hilary Ehlen

Home Innovation Holdings LLC (Opened 2017) and Door Stud LLC (Opened May 2019)

My business started in 2017 as Home Innovation Holdings, LLC and released its first product, Door Stud ®, in the spring of 2018. Door Stud, LLC was started as its own company in May 2019. HIH is a product development company that designs, develops and builds high-quality products for the construction industry. The Door Stud is the first series of products to be released, hence, its own brand and company. If you take a few minutes to review each of the websites, we think it is clear what we do and also what we stand for.

Jim Newenhouse

Branch: Army, Army Reserve & National Guard

Years Served: 17

First Job After Service: Design Engineer

Did you use military benefits when starting Door Stud?
Educational Benefits & Home Loan

Military skill most used in business: Leadership & Strategic Planning

What words of encouragement do you have for fellow veteran entrepreneurs?
Starting a company takes quite a lot of energy and diverse resources. Growth and change are inevitable and can occur in small or large ways on a daily basis. Being resilient is required.  In the beginning, it worked well for us to look online at the local and state level towards existing programs to leverage the current aid available for our start-up, this also helped in our planning and eventual growth. It is important to be critical of your ideas and look for others to do the same, along with encouraging you to try different approaches when needed.  It is vital to take the time early on, research your idea and value proposition or opportunity in the market, both independently, as well as against your competitors.  Try to define what separates you from others i.e. why people will choose your product at the price-point. 

Many veterans struggle with finding a sense of purpose when reintegrating into the civilian world. How can getting involved in the business community help with that reintegration process?
My advice is to be genuine and transparent, network with the team that is out there for you, most people love to see veterans succeed. There is a very high probability that you know or will run into someone, that has made the same sacrifice or commitment to service that you did, which is a credit to our population and the fabric of our society.  Fellow citizen-soldiers can be a great help, they already have an understanding of what you went through from a commitment perspective, and they know what you offer in experience.  Use this prior-service team or audience to your advantage in networking with the larger group that is available and interested in helping you. People generally do not turn others away when asking for help.  People are generally afraid to ask for help.

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Brady is the Editorial Director at Spotlight Media in Fargo, ND.