3 Things Needed to Cultivate a strong Startup Community..It's a mission statement
Tallahassee has been trying to inject a startup culture similar to Boulder, Austin, and of course Silicon Valley for several years now. Several organizations have tried and tried. The question is why hasn’t the culture taken hold? Here are a few “must have” ingredients needed and hopefully together we can make this happen.
- Strong Computer Science department. Computer Science graduates from the Top 20 schools are among the most sought after demographic for companies of all sizes…they also are the highest percentage of degrees found among the elite startups globally. Why is this? Computer Science is the foundation around majority of software applications. With the barrier of entry to creating products with software decreasing by the year, this by far represents the greatest percentage of newly formed businesses. Tallahassee needs to make sure we invest not only in the CS department itself but also in marketing it to the rest of the world. If companies think they can find strong tech talent from our CS program, they will start companies and bring companies here.
- Investment dollars AND mentorship. Most of the time, if a “mentor” that doesn’t have capital to actually invest in a startup is trying to help it…that mentor may not really have the chops the founders need. The reason behind the success of Y-Combinator and other major accelerators has little to do with the combination of advice from people who have successfully founded companies as well as can actually put their $$ where their mouth is.
- Plug and play services. While this the least important, its still important. Founders in startup “Mecca’s” like Austin can get cheap co-working office space with all the perks without signing a lease. If we really want to make Tally work for startups, Tally has to be willing to work for startups!