Operations Exec | Legal Advisor | Entrepreneur
Office Hours: By appointment only
Areas of Expertise: Art, Legal, Technology
Michael is able to help his clients find creative solutions and bring a strategic approach to projects – eager to roll up his sleeves, unafraid to ask tough questions, and able to approach problems from multiple perspectives.
Before founding Boon Legal, Michael was an attorney with Baker Donelson where he was a member of the Emerging Companies team within the Corporate Finance and Securities Group.
Prior to law school, Michael was an entrepreneur and visionary leader with a strong people-first philosophy. He built a strong record of accomplishment in driving innovation and development of businesses, product lines, interactive consumer products, and mobile and web applications.
Throughout his career, Michael designed, directed, or substantially contributed to the development of more than 50 interactive software titles, most coupled with large license IP products. He developed military training simulators, large-scale motion-control rides/simulators, state-scaled education platforms, and innovative business and enterprise applications.
Michael is actively involved in the technology, film, transmedia, video game, and entrepreneur communities in Nashville. He is a proud board member of the Nashville Shakespeare Festival.
Q. What excites you most about the Wond’ry?
A.The fact that there are work spaces to allow students to build things. It is so important in the creation process to have the tools and place to work on prototyping the idea. That’s a part of the process that a lot of the other incubators have left out.
Q. What do you feel are the most important skills you have to offer in your role as a mentor?
A. I have had the experience of getting a product from idea to shelf for more than 20 years. I’ve also led teams of creatives and technologists to bring ideas to life while balancing things like budgets, timelines, and resources. Having been an entrepreneur myself, I also know the value of boot strapping and the joy of building somethings.
Q. What has been your proudest moment in your career?
A. It would be a tie between the few times that I have had a mentee return to me to say that what I did to help them mattered in their lives.
Q. What has surprised you most about your job?
A. That I love to learn. In school, I always thought that the process sucked. As I began my career, I realized that I really enjoy the process, just not the structure of formal education (which, I believe, is actually really bad at teaching and inspiring the love of learning).
Q. If you could do everything over again, would you make the same career choices?
A.No. I would have taken on a larger role sooner so that I could become more of a driving force in the decisions that affected my life. I have often been left feeling that I stepped up just a bit too late.
Q. In your opinion, what is the most important quality for success?
A. It’s a tie between (qualified) persistence and the desire to make more mistakes. (Qualified) persistence. That is the commitment to be the best at what you do, coupled with the wisdom to be flexible and know that sometimes the quickest path to your goal is a wiggly line.Desire to make mistakes (early and often). The unwavering commitment Michael Woolf to try again and again knowing that failure is not bad. Failure is the best way to find the result of this experiment so that you can find the right path.
Q. When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A. A film actor and director.