Brad Feld of the Foundry Group, one of the founders of TechStars in Boulder, Colorado, posted on peHUB last week on How to Create a Sustainable Entrepreneurial Community. To begin:
- It’s a 20-year journey, with a half-dozen leaders committed to providing leadership over that entire 20-year span
- You shouldn’t try to be Silicon Valley, but look to how Silicon Valley played to its own strengths in building its startup community, and do the same.
Feld says that this is just table stakes. You need more. The first thing, he says, is to do things that engage the entire entrepreneurial community:
You need to… create real events that have entrepreneurs work together on a regular basis. Meetups and Open Coffee Club type events that occur on a regular basis are a great start. Hackathons, Startup Weekend, and Open Angel Forum events are the next level. Events at the local university, such as CU Boulder’s Silicon Flatirons programs, including Entrepreneurs Unplugged and Entrepreneurial Roundtables, involve the entrepreneurial community with students who are the future entrepreneurs in the community. And programs like TechStars — which engage the entire entrepreneurial community for 90 days a year — are the icing on the cake.
We couldn’t agree more. Events are the key to a connected and sustainable entrepreneurial community. Not only do you need to create these events, but you have to get the word out about the events entire entrepreneurial ecosystem. This is the idea behind the Business Calendar Network – get all the different organizations and groups in the region working collaboratively and transparently to build a stronger startup scene.