Chris McCann's Personal Blog

Life's too short to not do awesome things

Entering a Startup Community

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You moved to Silicon Valley, NYC, Vancouver, Seattle, or another worldwide startup hub to follow your dream of starting your own company, you’re new to the scene or new to the area. How do you get started?

If you’re like most entrepreneurs you spend a lot of time alone or with your small team, working long days and nights on your product for 14 hours every day. You don’t have the time or luxury to spend a lot of time away from your company and even less for meeting others.

The truth is, no matter how old you are, how smart you are, how good your product is, or how big your target market is you need help and support from others. Events are one of the easiest ways to get plugged into the startup eco-system.

Startup events can range from industry specific events, which are great for customer feedback, to general entrepreneurial gatherings which can inspire the continued drive within you. Each event has its own unique flavor, focusing on founders, hackers, college students, getting funding, or embracing failure and depending on your situation certain events may be more fitting to your tastes.

Here are 5 reasons why I think the best way to enter a startup community is through startup events:

  1. Startup life can be a lonely endeavor
    Just the simple act of surrounding yourself with other entrepreneurs going through similar situations can help tremendously with your persistence and sanity. Plus the added benefits of surrounding yourself around other passionate driven individuals and groups can create an infinite realm of possibilities.
  2. Startup events are one of the few places the eco-system converges
    I can’t think of any other instance besides startup events where the whole entrepreneurial eco-system consistently comes together and is easily visible. All good startups events though should aim to bring the whole startup eco-system under one roof including: potential employees, potential co-founders, investors, potential customers service providers, and mentors.
  3. Startups need continuous feedback and to find those early adopters
    There are only a few customers and companies crazy enough to buy products and give initial feedback on alpha/beta versions. Events are a very easy and efficient place to pitch your initial product or concept to a wide group of individuals with startup experience and develop some initial assumptions of who their customers are
  4. Startup events can lead to unexpected randomness
    I can’t even begin to describe the unexpected randomness I experience at events which leads to a whole new path in my life. In fact I can point my whole entrepreneurial journey to one event at my University where I was inspired and empowered to develop my own unique life path.

I love startup events so much that my own company the “[Startup Digest]” is dedicated to delivering you the best startup events in your city once a week. The goal is to save you the time and hassle of finding these events yourself, and to be the empowering force that brings startup communities together worldwide.

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One Response

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  1. Spot on! I seem to have stumbled on this trick accidentally. Recently moved to San Francisco from Los Angeles after spending 6 months straight in our cave building iSpy. I’ve met hundreds of really bright people at local events up here. Many of which are providing awesome feedback, hooking me up with people in their network and some have even become company advisers. This never would have happened in LA.

    At first I used Meetup.com and Plancast.com but now Startup Digest is a must. So anyway, go out and mingle. You never know who you’ll bump into.

    Greg G.

    March 8, 2010 at 5:49 pm


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