The Turbo Traction Lab

Published on 08 August 2019

Tamara Loehr and Elize Hattin sitting on a couch in front of the SmartHub logo

Becoming an entrepreneur is an intimidating thought to some, but owning your own business is a dream held by many. For those who are willing to put in the hard work, becoming an entrepreneur has the potential to radically change and improve your life. In order to help as many people as possible achieve their dreams the Turbo-Traction Lab was created, and it gives entrepreneurs the best possible chance of success in business. In a recent Hub Live, SmartHub Business Manager Elize Hattin sat down with wellness entrepreneur and Turbo-Traction Lab mentor Tamara Loehr, to discuss what exactly the Turbo-Traction Lab had to offer.

What is the Turbo-Traction Lab?

In 2017, Elize found herself on a phone call with a federal government official who told her of some matched funding opportunities that were available that would allow the SmartHub to run an incredible program. This program was designed to help people – business owners, entrepreneurs and those who want to create their own business. This program became the Turbo-Traction Lab.

From that phone call, the Turbo-Traction Lab has grown into an extraordinary hands-on program with world-class experts such as Tamara. The program provides everything that an entrepreneur could need to build their business from the ground up over an 80-day course. Valued at over $160,000 it is mind blowing that this course is available for free! Making it accessible to any entrepreneur. “Take 20 years of my business learnings, and my agency with all the marketing, and my connections I’ve built up over 20 years, you just put that down in 80 days. It’s a head spinner, but my gosh, they’re fast tracked. What an opportunity,” said Tamara.

What will I learn?

The Turbo-Traction Lab covers everything that an entrepreneur needs to know in order to successfully create and scale a business. Over the 16-week program, participants can expect to learn things like funding their Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and how to get their first sale, all the way to managing products, finance and the legal side of owning a business. With world-class experts on-hand across a range of business topics, the experts share their knowledge with the participants and their support ensures that creating a successful business becomes a reality, and not a dream.

One member of the Turbo-Traction Lab who has found success is Jade, the founder of Two Green Stones. Jade was already selling her beautiful line of handcrafted ethical jewellery to family and friends, but Tamara knew she could improve. “Selling to family and friends isn’t correct validation, so we took the product to the market properly. Jade really wanted to focus on online sales, but we also explored what other opportunities were out there. If you want to get over a million dollars in sales, you really want several channels. She didn’t know where to start with any of that,” Tamara explained.

Tamara and Jade then worked on Jade’s strategy together, starting with the end in mind. “I told Jade that my dream for her was to have a business and have her earrings sold internationally in alignment with beautiful brands. You have to dream big, figure out what that looks like, then we go all the way back and we say, how do we chip away to get to that point?”

“For Jade, she’s just finishing up the Turbo-Traction Lab, and she’s already got a mentor in the US who has 40 jewellery stores, which is a connection I had. She’s just been to a trade show and she got stockists and did orders both in Australia and overseas, which is fantastic. I also hooked her up with another friend of mine who was a fashion designer in America who sells in high-end boutiques. She’s really getting into that market too, which is unbelievable,” she said.

In just 80 days, Jade has created a successful business, not just with connections and sales, but with the systems and processes behind it that will allow her to scale with success. The Turbo-Traction Lab allowed Jade and the other participants to find success and it has also built a community of fine entrepreneurs to support each other. “We’re all on a WhatsApp group. We talk daily, and we’re all supporting each other. And when Jade won all those orders at the trade show, we all sent her videos of us dancing,” said Tamara. “Having that support is really, really important, and nobody knows what it’s like to be an entrepreneur unless you’re one yourself. You can go home and talk to your cat or your husband, but at the end of the day you need like-minded people around you who know what it takes.”

Experts on offer

One thing that sets the Turbo-Traction Lab apart from other programs is the quality of the experts on hand who mentor and nurture the businesses created in the program. Some of these experts are Rockhampton locals and understand our region. Others, including Tamara, are flown in from across Australia in order to share their knowledge and expertise with the participants.

With so many experts on hand, the Turbo-Traction Lab can offer personalised support for your specific business and the issues that come along with it, rather than a one-size-fits-all approach. “We’ve got an app, we’ve got Jade with her beautiful products, we’ve got service space businesses as well. There’s a real mixture of people in the room and what you need to remember is it doesn’t matter if you buy a book or do a course. Every single business is unique and therefore every business needs its own strategy and its own why,” Tamara said. “You can try and self-help yourself, but the reason I’ve been successful is not because of me, it’s about all the great people I’ve had around me over the years.”

Not only has Tamara brought her own expertise, but she shares her network with the participants as well, helping these entrepreneurs to find key contacts to help grow their business. “I’ve been through so many suppliers to get these amazing people, so when these guys in the Lab need something I just go, “Here, just use this person.” They’re not just getting me; they’re getting my team supporting them through their journey.”

The other experts are just as passionate about helping the Turbo-Traction Lab participants shine as Tamara is. Some of these experts include Dean Dobson, an ex-employee of Microsoft who is an expert with product management. Shaun Restorick-Barton of Law Squared who understands the legal side of business and helps the entrepreneurs to structure their businesses right. Chris Harris is an accountant with CT Harris Chartered Accountants and is an expert in accounting, taxation and general business management. Phil Martin is a local tech business owner who grew his own business from the SmartHub, who is on hand to help set up the technology in your business.

“I pay top dollar for all these experts in my business, and they’re all here every time you have a problem,” Tamara said. “Just put your hand up and you’ve got an expert to work with you. The problem’s fixed and it’s all set up. It’s pretty amazing stuff.”

Make your entrepreneurial dreams a reality!

Applications for round 2 of the Turbo-Traction Lab are due to close on the 19th of August and will help you build your dream business from the ground up. The program is free and only requires a SmartHub membership which grants such benefits as free Wi-Fi, free printing, access to mentors and free entry to workshops and events.

“At the end of the day, all you need to do is put your hand up and say, “I want to play this game of business. I think I’m worthy. I’ve got the drive and I see that this is a massive opportunity.” That’s all you need to start with,” Tamara said. “If you know someone who lives in another state who has a great business idea and they want to make it happen, then jump on a plane because there’s nothing like this in the world. I’ve travelled to a lot of countries and seen a lot of incubator centres and there’s nothing like the Turbo-Traction Lab.”

“The business journey is so much fun, and it’s just taking that first step. I cannot stress how wonderful it is to be in business and to be in this community, and to have the freedom and the opportunities. If you think that this is something you want to do in life, then don’t be the person on your deathbed saying that you regret not doing it. Because guess what? You’re one decision away from changing your life, and you can always go back to plan b, which is just to get your job back,” She continued. “This is a safe area, there’s no scary entrepreneur classroom stuff. We’re all in this together, we’re all friends.”

If you’re interested in joining the Turbo-Traction Lab, applications close on the 19th of August. This Lab is the second of three Labs that will be held, so if you’re interested, don’t wait! Click here to apply.

For more information, please contact the SmartHub Rockhampton via email at or phone 4936 8444.

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