There was a busy programme of events, masterclasses, workshops, networking, dinners and banter over the two and a half days of the visit by a dozen or so entrepreneurs from Silicon Valley. I attended a number of the formal sessions and the dinner at the Masters Lodge at Trinity College. Apart from the energy and buzz which is so typical of events that gather together entrepreneurs - especially those with credibility what else did I get?
A conference with entrepreneurs is soooo much more fun, educational, exciting, stimulating for opportunities and positive thinking - no one even mentioned the recession/credit crunch/difficulties or any such negative challenges. Was this because we mixed Silicon Valley with Silicon Fen? Maybe.
There were specifics - such as - where and when can you succeed as a small company innovating against a giant - "when you keep out of the spotlight of the big company". I like the use of such language rather than the dry business speak of professionals.
To partner with large companies as an entrepreneurial firm - find yourself an internal champion, get past the gatekeeper to the decision makers (never overestimate the clout of your contact)because decisions in large firms requires the buy-in of many stakeholders.
Before you think that partnering is key to your business strategy ask yourself - why can't you just Go For It?
To build internet businesses - some key tips:
Ensure that you build a fabulous user experience - just think of the simplicity of the google front page.
Ask is it scalable and try and establish that fact early in the business cycle.
Set yourself tight milestones and make sure you hit them.
There were two great sound bites that I took away
SMEs die of indigestion rather than starvation
Never become half pregnant
There was a lot to learn from the two days of oxygen filled events - so a big thank you to everyone that took part in all their different roles. There are an increasing number of pictures, videos, blogs, news items all over the internet. If you are hungry enough - please follow via svc2c.com
Pictures on http://www.flickr.com/search/?q=svc2c