Meet Laurie Barkman

My Purpose

My purpose is to use my skills to enable entrepreneurs to achieve their vision for improving the world.

I launched SmallDotBig to work with entrepreneurs, closely held companies, and family businesses to develop innovations that create enterprise value and transition plans to achieve their long-term goals.

My Values

  • Clarity - I help people move forward in challenging times.

  • Grounded - I'm a grounding force by being measured and knowing the why.

  • Amplify - I admire creativity, kindness, and cleverness. I look, listen, and identify value to create messages worth spreading.

  • Motivated - I reach for the top, inspire others, and support their stretch.

  • Resilient - There’s no such thing as a problem, it’s an opportunity to be solved.

My mission is guiding entrepreneurs to achieve clarity so their ideas can take flight

 CEO + Innovation 


  • More than 25 years in leadership roles:

    • technology startups 

    • privately-held and family owned businesses

    • public companies

    • corporate startups 

  • Former CEO of a closely-held company $100M subsidiary with a successful exit

  • Award-winning B2C and B2B marketer and strategist

  • Managing partner of a private equity firm focused on early-stage technology companies


Technology, Professional Services, Retail, eCommerce, Education, Venture Capital, Private Equity, Industrial and Consumer Products, Supply Chain Logistics, Non-Profit

Board Service

  • Advisory Board Member, Safety io, subsidiary of MSA Safety Inc.

  • Board Member, The Pittsburgh Promise, Marketing Committee Chair

  • Co-Chair, Women for Economic Leadership and Development Pittsburgh Chapter

  • Former President, CMU Tepper School of Business Alumni Board

Credentials + Awards

  • ​​MBA Carnegie Mellon University

  • BS Cornell University

  • Business Transition and Exit Planning Certificate, Exit Planning Institute

  • Pittsburgh Business Times Women of Influence Award

  • National Diversity Council Most Powerful and Influential Leader Award

  • American Marketing Association Pittsburgh Chapter Marketer Award 

Passion for Entrepreneurship

  • Startup Mentor: Alpha Lab, McGinnis Competition, Randall Big Idea 

SmallDotBig works with entrepreneurs, private companies, and family businesses for innovation, transition, and growth strategies to create value and achieve their long-term goals.

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