Stupid and Stubborn
It’s Sunday night and tomorrow we start production for the 3rd edition of UPRISE Festival. In just over one year we are moving at crazy speed while also setting up the 4th edition in Dublin in October 19–20th. It’s been a tough year from high to low and back to normality.
Here’s hoping this all goes to plan with this edition since the last edition was a massive learning curve on what i don’t want to do again. Building festivals and especially managing a team is a still for me a game to get used to. Bullishly arguing and combatively approaching topics isn’t always the best way to approach new teams discovering how to sell this mammoth to companies and startups. I’m getting better at it but it goes slow.
It’s important for me we keep the ethos of inclusivity while making sure the festival makes money. I’ve a tendency to say ‘We’re not a charity we are a business’ but I also need to feel that the festival reaches as many people as possible as I have an agenda to make sure we bring the talent that conjures solutions to our everyday problems to the people that experience those everyday problems. I do think there is a massive disconnect between these two groups and I really really want to see the divide lessen even a tad.
It’s been difficult reaching out in the Netherlands to the public and even harder to startups who are a demanding bunch but creating a strong value proposition is very much key. If you can sell to Startups in the Netherlands and they buy it then you are on a winner.
We go to the new location tomorrow to build something i think has a feeling of freshness and adaptability and will make huge changes every edition we make I think it’s worth pursuing every 6 months. I just hope and pray to my heathen gods that people visiting don’t sit back with their ipads and phones and avoid talking to each other but connect and start relationships from unexpected corners. It would make me sad and waste what I think is a great breeding ground for talent and engaged minds to argue, inspire and maybe even start something together. The spark of opportunity is there for the people that recognise and take it.
I realise I tend to come across a critical mother fucker (of which i am alot)but I think below the surface I’m a guarded optimist full of hope for where I am and what we build as UPRISE and what it helps to do in pushing forward the Netherlands into more inclusivity and embracing more people into it’s fold for tech and maybe even build a sense of community.
So say we all. (Points for guessing the nerd reference)