We have started thinking about Startup Iceland 2014. The overarching mission of Startup Iceland is to build a sustainable/antifragile startup ecosystem in Iceland and maybe that could serve as a model for other communities, this experiment is based on Brad Feld’s hypothesis from his book “Startup Communities“. I have continued to think and act in building a sustainable startup community here in Iceland, it is a long road and I am reminded of poem by Robert Frost
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
It is poignant and apt, I relate to the poem to take a breather and take stock every year during Startup Iceland Conference to see how far we have come here in this tiny island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. We have seen many success stories come out and a number of people being inspired to take on the road of Entrepreneurship and start their new venture or continue to build their startup. I see really young people, actually making choices of doing their own startup as opposed to joining a big company or looking for a job. I see big companies in Iceland completely oblivious to the transformation that is happening and how they are going to be impacted by it. I see the struggle every single day as a CEO of GreenQloud that is transitioning from being a Startup to being a small company. I see the challenges in the policy machine called the Government of Iceland and in all these struggles and posturing, one thing always remains… my fundamental mission of helping entrepreneurs and of being of service to my tribe. Yes, I feel connected with my tribe of Entrepreneurs the brave, the few, the crazy ones. Brad has this notion of give before you get something… this has always been my give. I give time to serve my tribe. I have absolutely nothing that I want to get other than see another entrepreneur or startup from Iceland cross the chasm and succeed.
I want to see this feeling take shape in the next Startup Iceland Conference. We have not decided on the date or theme yet, but it will be in the last week of May or first week of June. The last 2 years it was driven by Brad Feld and Amy Bachelor’s schedule… I know I know I have mentioned Brad’s name a couple of times in this blog. Brad has mentioned in his blog that he is not going to travel for business in 2014, I just asked him. So fingers crossed…
The ask for this blog post is do you have ideas for speakers or themes you would like to see covered in the event? We are going to be ambitious and see if we can cross the 500 people attendance threshold. The last 2 years we had about 250 to 300 participants. Lets see if we can do better this year.