Category

Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

Joining The B Team

For a long time I’ve been fascinated by the intersection between entrepreneurship and social change. When I say that I’m not describing social entrepreneurship (a term I really don’t like; it’s not a subset of entrepreneurship, it’s simply “entrepreneurship”) or impact investing, at least not as they’re commonly understood in the current business lexicon. I really mean two things: The first is the application of entrepreneurial principles and startup techniques to solving critical, basic needs problems around the world (many of the companies I’ve worked with as a founding board member at the Unreasoanble Institute fall into this category, as one example). The second is that all businesses, regardless of the product or service they produce, can work to create…

The Community Foundation, EFCO and Pledge 1%

Cross posting this article I wrote for The Community Foundation of Colorado. As many of my readers know, I’ve been passionate about the intersection of startups and community for years. And specifically developing a worldwide movement of startups giving back to their local communities from their very founding. I blog a lot about community: entrepreneurial, local, national, international, social, etc. The short takeaway is that a group of people acting together towards a common goal can have a far greater impact than they expect – and certainly more than they would acting alone. I often use a great scene in the movie Office Space to illustrate this point. An outgrowth of The Community Foundation’s EFCO initiative – Entrepreneurs Foundation of…

The Importance of Robust Angel Ecosystems

Earlier this week I gave the keynote address at the Colorado Angel Capital Summit. While the audience was Colorado focused, the overall message I delivered about the angel ecosystem is very relevant to all entrepreneurial communities. I thought I’d share both the presentation and the key thoughts here. The overall trend around angel investing is a pretty interesting one. I’ve talked about this trend before – specifically the acceleration of angel investing in 2011-2014. I think what we’re really seeing here is market excitement around angel investing leading to a quick surge, followed by (I hope) a more normal and sustained level of activity. The sharp rise in angel activity also coincided with the raise of platforms such as AngelList which more easily…

Entrepreneurial Density

I’ve been throwing this term around for a while and thought it was worth writing about, as I believe that understanding entrepreneurial how density can shape an entrepreneurial ecosystem is very important. But first, a link back to some ideas around entrepreneurial communities in general. My partner Brad literally wrote the book about this (highly recommended if you haven’t read it already). But the very quick summary is that great entrepreneurial communities are build on the basis of a few key tenets (Brad writes about these in much more detail in the book, which – again – you should read) – Startup Communities Take Time. Think 20 years. And they don’t happen overnight (despite what you may have heard about Boulder…