Mile High City, Mile High Ambitions
That’s what we always tell our young children when they are just starting on their life path. My daughter recently turned 1.5 years old and many, including myself, have told her to dream big and don’t let anything get in the way. Somehow, as you grow older, you hear fewer people telling you to dream big. But last week, as an Ambassador of Denver Startup Week, I was challenged to have aggressive ambitions, dream big, and imagine the impossible.
Denver is an amazing place - not only because of the entrepreneurs who make this city vibrant but the community that embraces diversity and encourages ambitions, helping each other be more successful as a collective whole. As an Ambassador, I felt inspired and encouraged to be a better founder of my own company but also learned a ton from other Ambassadors and leaders from the companies we visited. Here are some of my learnings that really resonated with me:
- Building a complex financial product is all about building trust and transparency, thanks John Swigart, Mike Gionfriddo, Pie Insurance
- The key to fostering successful culture is NOT about formulating a set of values that people fit into, but finding and bringing on board people who ADD their own diverse values, thanks Brian Egan, Evolve Vacation Rental
- There ARE successful business models built on serving the underserved and underdogs, thanks Terrence Cummings, Bijal Shah, Rachel Carlson, Guild Education
- To do big and unthinkable things, you first need to create a safe space where the underdogs and large institutions can co-exist, thanks Mike Biselli, Catalyst HTI
- You CAN build successful products for millennials, thanks Luke Swanson Ibotta, Inc.
- The first step to a successful multi-billion dollar business is scribbling the idea on a napkin, and then executing, thanks Southwest Airlines
Thank you Denver and Denver Startup Week for your mile-high ambitions. I’m addicted and will be back for more.
CEO and Founder, Loom