What I Learned at Start Up Weekend Portland, Maine
If you EVER have the opportunity to attend a Start Up Weekend anywhere in the world – GO!!! I guarantee, if you attend with an open mind, it will change your life and your business. You’ll be challenged (sometimes pushed) to get out of your comfort zone, you’ll be inspired and you’ll learn what it really takes to get a business idea ready to go to market. This is one of the best events for entrepreneurs I’ve ever been part of.
What I Learned at Start Up Weekend Portland, ME:
1.We only grow when we step out of our comfort zone. Their were 45 people who pitched ideas Friday night – many of whom had never pitched a business idea in their life. Yet they did it. They stepped up to the plate and shared their idea. Whether their idea won or not – they grew as the result of stepping out.
2. People truly do want to help. I was blown away by the amount of help we had. We had more volunteers than we needed. The people who showed not only gave their time – they gave their talents and expertise freely and without expectation of anything in return.
3. There is not one right way to do anything. Each group and each idea took on a life of it’s own over the weekend. Teams tried on many ideas and sometimes instead of finding the best choice – they just had to choose one.
4. Things happen quicker when you ask for help. Each and every person in attendance this weekend more than likely has the skills to start their own business by themselves Yet when they came together as a team of experts for a solid weekend – they produced results far greater than anything they could have accomplished alone. It really is good to ask for help.
5. Conflict is part of life. I watched teams struggle, individuals get frustrated and some even walked away. Yet that’s life. When we work with people – there will be conflict. It’s unavoidable. Success comes only when we are willing to deal with and walk through conflict.
6. You will not always win. But does it matter? I don’t believe winning is the most important thing. I believe each and every team could start the business they worked on this weekend right now. Winning or losing isn’t the important thing – it’s what the team did Monday morning that counts. Continued action and persistence are more important that a trophy.
7. Creating a business is fun. When people share their ideas and/or work on creating a new business there’s lots of POSITIVE ENERGY. It’s exciting, challenging and can be all-consuming. What would happen to our world if could take that same energy and apply it to the problems we face each day? I believe we would be unstoppable.
Here is the website for this past weekend’s event: http://portlandmaine.startupweekend.org/
If you were at the event this weekend, what did you learn?