I just finished reading Brad Feld’s new book, called “Startup Communities.” I read it cover-to-cover in one sitting during a trip back from NYC. It’s that good.
I really like the following points he made:
- Entrepreneurs have to lead the startup community, not investors, government or service providers
- Government is ill-equipped to lead entrepreneurship. Politicians are forced to be too short-term in their time horizons because of the election cycles
- VCs are “feeders” to entrepreneurs and the startup communities. Investors cannot be gatekeepers to entrepreneurship nor lead the community
- Giving back to the community is critical. We need to help and mentor entrepreneurs even if there isn’t immediate “value” to us as individuals. The goal is to create a thriving community and foster a tide that raises all boats. A zero sum mentality suppresses the community
The anecdotes and examples really make the book come alive. For example, Brad really captures the Web 1.0 Bubble and Crash and how the events affected the startup communities. He also charts the evolution of Boulder, Colorado, from a small city to a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem. Pretty cool stuff.
This book is a must-read, IMO. I hope whoever is elected President reads it. We have a real jobs crisis.