HOW TO: 100 New tech companies in 10 years for Burlington
So how do you make shit happen in the state with the smallest population, 635K people, East of the Mississippi?
- Continuity for graduates into the pipeline: We need to get every and all companies in the area working with career services at local colleges. And we need them to know what we are hiring for and looking for skill wise as well as to show them what our culture is like. We do not do this and we need to. Why? Because it freaking works very well to keep an indigenous labor force populated and to keep people interested in firms.
HOW? By hosting them(career services , software engieneering chairs and professors, TAs, Grad students, assitants, deans, whoever) to our spaces and talking about our stack, what the hell we do and what sort of roles we want to hire for,
2. Places for risktakers to work and live : Craft Game Developers and Entreprenerds need a place to crash and a place to work out of. Matt Dunne , the bad ass Ex Googler that I’m voting for governor, spoke earlier this week about having tech houses so that firms can execute and get live in a space while they work on their project. Brad Feld did this when Kansas City got fiber. Guess what? We have a shit ton of fiber in Burlington running at speeds FASTER THAN GOOGLE FIBER! 10 Gigs FTW.
3. People need to learn to ask for Advice not capital: Earlier this year I got to meet with John Abele about our project VitalVr.co. Who? John — founded and built Boston Scientific that makes heart stents and 10,000s of other devices — Abele. Respeck. He sat with us for an hour and offered unfiltered feedback on what we were doing and specific challenges as to what we are working on. It was an awesome moment because a. the dude is really smart, b. he gets entrepreneurs, medicine, doctors, devices, and getting it done and c. he challenged us and was willing to continue talking to us about our progress. He is one of many people here in Vermont who have been absolutely approachable. Seriously I love this state because I can call the governor and he will answer his own phone. Try it. (802) 828–3333
4. Create groups of Multi vertical influences not single vertical : The ability to get access people outside of the standard university or corporate tribe. When in doubt, create a meetup or invite others from outside to check out what the problems or projects are that you want to work on. Seriously do it. I would love to see Champlain partner with Middlebury and UVM on a project say on a mobile web application startup . There are such interesting strengths of the various student, professor and professional populations that it is amazing to see it when they come together.
5. Fight the old white guy problem via COIN/LIC engagement: There are a lot of people here who do not want to see changes happen. The biggest problem is in the business landscape where there are many entrenched firms that like making lots of money and are going to fight anyone that comes in. Getting advice from people and going around the entrenched people and engaging in new economies is the way to go .
More to come