Startup Soiree is a monthly meetup focused on creating meaningful conversations among entrepreneurs and leaders within the local startup community. Each time I enter a SS event (I’ve been twice), I feel like something great is bound to happen. I’m not sure why or how, but for some strange reason I feel extremely optimistic and hopeful about how people will perceive and respond to me and my ideas.
This month, the soiree was held at Columbus Center and featured Michael McDevitt, CEO of Terra’s Kitchen speaking on “Turning Innovation Into Execution”.
It was affirming to hear someone in the space of entrepreneurship share concepts that I could relate to, like executing while figuring out solutions along the way. Being fearless and allowing your audience to provide impactful feedback. Even better, Michael was wearing jeans! Yes. I love jeans. That’s the type of CEO I want to be.
As a self proclaimed introvert and awkwardly kind person, I pride myself on taking the first step to introduce myself and dialogue with new people. As an entrepreneur embarking on a multidimensional project it’s imperative that I collect as many perspectives from people who think differently and some alike, so that I am producing an authentic and relatable experience reflective of the diversity of my audience.
SS makes this incredibly easy to do with a multitude of entrepreneurs and creatives all blended and mixed into one interesting and stimulating space. This space lacks pretention and cultivates a sense of community and familiarity that is often absent in the day-to-day solitude of entrepreneurship.
For a long time I’ve searched for the perfect conversation starter, outside of “So, what do you do?”. I abhor that question! And finally, for the first time, it came to me while attending this most recent SS event. In the most authentic and real moment of conversation with an absolute stranger I asked, “So what are you good at?”, and that was it — I had my opener. People’s eyes light up when you ask them what they’re good at. Everyone’s good at something, and I want to know what you’re good at so that we can trade good stuff. What you do for a paycheck may not correspond with your strengths and that’s okay! I get it. I’ve spent 18 years working and doing a little of what I’m good at here and there, but now I’m doing what I’m great at. The key now is to make a living off of being great, and I’m pretty confident that I will make it happen. As a creative and introspective thinker, I yearn for spaces outside of myself to share ideas and come together with people. For the first time in a long time I feel that SS has cultivated and nurtured such space month after month. They’ve got me. I’m sold.
The night ended with the Light City U parade culminating at pier 6 which was pretty energetic and indicative of the energy that this event has brought to the city.
All the best,
Creative Community Builders, LLC