Five Tips from Fords on Friday: Ryan Frankel ’06 Founder, EduPlated

Five Tips from Fords on Friday: Ryan Frankel ’06 Founder, EduPlated

Ryan Frankel ’06

Founder, EduPlated

Economics & Spanish Double Major


About Ryan Frankel: 

Ryan Frankel is the founder of EduPlated, an online nutrition coaching platform. Previously, he was the CEO and Co-Founder of VerbalizeIt, a language translation platform for businesses which was acquired in 2016. VerbalizeIt was incubated in TechStars and featured on the ABC TV series, Shark Tank. VerbalizeIt was honored by PhoCusWright as the 2013 Travel Startup of the Year and in 2014, Ryan was named by Inc. Magazine as a Top 35 Under 35 entrepreneur.

He is an MBA graduate of The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a proud undergraduate alumnus of Haverford College where he studied Economics and Spanish and pitched for the varsity baseball team.

Prior to Wharton, Ryan was a financial analyst at Goldman Sachs in the Special Situations Group in New York City where he focused on middle market private equity transactions and the operational management of the portfolio companies.

He is also a recipient of the 2013 Class of 35 Top Travel Innovators and a frequent columnist in Forbes, Inc. Magazine, Wharton, and OPEN Forum by American Express.

Ryan is an endurance enthusiast who has enjoyed competing in an Ironman triathlon and multiple marathons.

He lives in Philadelphia with his wife, Golden Retriever, and pair of running shoes.


Five Tips for the Fords on Friday Talk:

  1. You don’t need an MBA to practice business. You need an MD to practice medicine, but business professionals can come from any background with (or without!) any degree. MBAs can be great for rebranding yourself and filling in knowledge gaps that you weren’t able to fill through your undergraduate program and early work experience, but they aren’t required.
  2. Business school is an awesome way to make connections. According to Ryan, the coursework during grad school was practical and very helpful, but it was the connections he made at Wharton, both with professors and peers that made a tremendous impact on him and his business practices.
  3. Remember to have “alligator skin.” When pitching your idea to potential investors, expect criticism and be prepared for rejection. If you believe in your product, don’t be swayed by negative feedback. Use what is constructive, and keep a thick “alligator” skin to deflect what isn’t. Then try again!
  4. If you’re not failing, you’re not trying hard enough. Most successful businesses failed 99 times before they succeeded. Failure is an important part of growth and it is necessary to take risks before you can succeed.
  5. The quality of your team matters more than the industry. Businesses will change. Fantastic ideas change shape and an initial concept can look very different by the time it is a successful product or business. Because of this, it is critical that you invest time and energy into creating the best team you can, rather than perfecting an idea at the start of a project. Partners will determine the success of a business.