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Start Your Business Success Stories

Construction Startup Seizes Opportunity In Difficult Economy

entrepreneur ODC Construction Fleet / Credit: ODC Construction | Isaac Lidsky

Anyone who doesn’t believe that timing can play an important role in the success of a business should look no further than Isaac Lidsky and ODC Construction. 

"My Harvard roommate and I were looking for a good business opportunity at the end of 2010, beginning of 2011," said Lidsky, CEO and partner of ODC Construction. "We thought it was a great time to get into residential construction in light of the once-in-a-lifetime low, which that industry was experiencing." 

Today, that company is one of the largest commercial construction companies in the Orlando, Fla., area. Lidsky has been able to accomplish this despite suffering from retinitis pigmentosa, an eye disease that caused him to lose his sight between the ages of 12 and 25.  BusinessNewsDaily spoke with Lidsky about his motivation to start his business and the importance of having the right team in place in business.

[How to Start a Business: Step-by-Step]

BusinessNewsDaily: What did you want to be when you grew up?

Isaac Lidsky: An actor.

BND: What did your parents do for a living?

I.L.: My father was an attorney who started his own firm and grew it to 10 lawyers. My mother is professional fundraiser for the nonprofit Hope for Vision.

BND: Can you talk a little about your businesses and how you got your start?

I.L.: My college roommate and I bought the assets of a construction company in town with a third partner, Tony Hartsgrove, who brought construction expertise to the table.  That's how ODC Construction was born.  Today we are the state's largest residential turnkey shell contractor.  We build the foundations, masonry and framing — the structural envelope, or "shell" for 3,500 homes per year.

BND: What's the best part of owning your own business?

I.L.: Having a hand in setting the culture and atmosphere of the company. Recognizing the talent and effort of my incredible team. We work hard, but have a lot of fun and don't take ourselves too seriously.

BND: What's the biggest mistake you've made as an entrepreneur?

I.L.: We strayed from our core business early on and paid for it with losses in a business segment where we had no business operating.

BND: What was your main motivation in starting this business?

I.L.: My business partners and I wanted to be part of building an excellent, growing business from the ground up.  We thought the dramatic market conditions would enable us to add great value for our customers while scaling up our business rapidly.

BND: What previous experiences helped you in that journey?

I.L.: Every day brings lessons worth learning for life and for business if one pays attention.  In particular, I learned a lot as an actor when I was growing up, as an Internet entrepreneur and as a litigator before starting up ODC Construction.

BND: What was the biggest challenge you encountered and how did you overcome it?

I.L.: I progressively lost my vision to a retinal degenerative disease from ages 12 to 25.  I learned to focus on real solutions to real problems, not dark imaginings, and to remain zealously aware of my great blessings in life.

BND: What is the best bit of advice you have for other entrepreneurs?

I.L.: Just dive in and work hard.  Surround yourself with talented, motivated people and constantly express your appreciation of their efforts.  If you want to do something excellent, your entire team needs to feel part of doing something excellent.

Originally published on BusinessNewsDaily.

Dave Mielach

Dave started writing for BusinessNewsDaily as a freelance writer in May 2011 and was hired as a staff writer in October 2011. He graduated from Marist College with a B.A. in Communication and a business minor. Prior to writing for BusinessNewsDaily, he interned at The Poughkeepsie Journal and two Marist College publications. To find out what his latest project is, you can follow Dave on .