Day Two: Quit Thinking About It and Start
Tuesday’s theme at the Global Innovation Summit was clear: innovative ecosystems and their components are built through collaboration of leaders pursuing a shared vision. The day was filled with conversations on how to design innovative ecosystems from scratch, case studies from organizations that have done it, and dialogue around how to build capital infrastructure.
I know, it’s the same message we hear over and over. To bring about change, one must develop buy-in. So, what makes this message different? Nothing, except this message was not communicated by researchers but by practitioners. Presenter after presenter, community leaders shared stories of how they did it; not how they heard it could be done.
The overarching message was clear: Build your team of stakeholders and just start doing. Make mistakes and learn. Don’t give up on the vision.
To take a page from Steve Blank’s book, entrepreneurs are more like artist then accountants. Accountants can learn the black and white skills necessary to be an accountant and have successful careers. Entrepreneurs, like artists, need to continue to hone their skills but also directly apply what they have learned into real world application. Entrepreneurs, like artists, must continue to work towards a vision of their potential and continue to improve themselves while creating. Today’s speakers were all entrepreneurs, primarily social entrepreneurs, and all spoke of the mistakes they made on the way to their current success.
For those interested in developing innovative ecosystems and looking to gain insight from today’s Global Innovation Summit presentations, I leave you with this:
- Build a core team.
- Develop a shared vision.
- Get out of your heads, start executing.
- Don’t be afraid of mistakes.
- Pivot when it’s appropriate.
- Grow your support network.
- Don’t stop doing.
Remember, I’ll be blogging and tweeting (@indiana_sbdc) my experience during this three day summit (February 17th-19th). Join the national conversation using #GISW14 or let’s tweet about how we can advance innovation in Indiana using #INatGISW14.